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UP-RES Urban Planners with Renewable Energy Skills (UP-RES)

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There is a serious need to reduce energy consumption and emissions in urban areas and support sustainable development. Currently there is lack of both knowledge and usable tools combining both elements, energy and urban and regional planning. As relevant training was also missing throughout the Europe, the UP-RES project contributed to bringing awareness and comprehensive understanding on renewable energy systems among urban and regional planning professionals. The project designed and delivered training on energy issues for urban and regional planners in five partner countries. Both short workshops and long professional development programs have been organised. The trainings took place in 2011 and 2012. The project aims attracted 1000 participants in the trainings.


  • By February 2013 the partners had delivered nearly 50 short trainings in five partner countries with about 1000 participants.
  • Three comprehensive professional development training programs were completed in Finland, Spain and Hungary. The fourth training program in Germany was completed in summer 2013. More than 100 professionals have been trained in these programs.
  • Training material package of 10 modules has been translated in 10 languages and distributed to European universities and planning schools and energy utilities. About 400 readers and downloads per module (by February 2013). The material includes good practice in energy-efficient urban and regional planning and six tools to calculate e.g. energy use and emissions.
  • Review of urban and regional planning guidelines in several cities in Europe.
  • Outlining European certificate for energy competent urban and regional planners. Accredited programs in Hungary and prospects for accreditation in Finland, Germany and Spain. British short courses accredited as continuing professional development programs.

Lessons learned

  • There is a substantial need for the UP-RES subject area and related competences to be included in the training of urban and regional planners. To have high impact the projects need to have variety of expertise, both internally in the consortium and outside in the national steering groups and other advisor bodies. Also great commitment is needed due to the novelty of the competence area: different target groups and stakeholders need to be convinced of the training and competence development needs
  • Despite the different national contexts, there was evident great value in collaborating: not only could UP-RES partners learn from each other, but there was a significant transferability between materials developed in one project partner country and the other project partner countries. This was exemplified by the training materials developed for both short and long courses, and the collaborative training material package that was produced in 10 languages.
  • Communicating on the need for a change may cause resistance in the target groups. Thus, knowing the audience and building trust early in the UP-RES type of development project enables communication. Information provision is not enough as there is a lot of "noise" related to energy issues. In terms of dissemination activities, there could be potential in common dissemination activities: having several projects spreading parallel messages to their target groups would enable higher impact & coverage.

Partners and coordinator

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Contact point: 
Mrs. Anna-Maija Ahonen
+358 50 307 4934


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In brief

01/09/2010 to 28/02/2013
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