• The 9th Low Carbon City Development World Forum will be held in October 2015 in Tampere, Finland.

    Download a PDF copy ofthe latest agenda here

    For details on discounted hotel rates, please see below the forum agenda.

    This autumn's forum is titled Capabilities for Sustainable Urban Innovation and will feature two days of presentations and plenary discussion sessions followed by a third day of site visits organized by the City of Tampere. These visits offer participants an opportunity to see first-hand the interesting development underway in the region. 

    The forum will focus on core themes, addressing them from the perspective of innovation capabilities:

    • Systemic solutions for renewable energy
    • Mobility as a service vs. automotive industry
    • Ageing as a catalyst for social innovations
    • Health as platform for urban development

    The forum will also provide an international perspective on developing regional cooperation in innovation activity, offering perspectives from Finland, China, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Ireland.

    For information on this autumn's forum follow this event page and follow us on Twitter @walccorg


    Forum Highlights

    The Low-Carbon City Development World Forum was initiated by the World Alliance for Low Carbon Cities (WALCC). The Alliance is a non-profit, international association, aimed at improving the international development of low-carbon cities and facilitating communication and cooperation. The three main objectives of the WALCC are: to serve as a learning platform for members, initiate and orchestrate international research projects for low-carbon development, and be a globally active promoter of low-carbon initiatives. 

    • Catalyze business opportunities for international players in Finland and internationally
    • Provide an opportunity for exchanging ideas and networking with key people such as policy makers and business leaders
    • Reflections from world class experts on the conference topics
    • Network with renowned business figures, thought leaders, and decision makers
    • Visits to some of Tampere's leading low-carbon development related sites

    Forum Agenda: Capabilities for Sustainable Urban Innovation

    Venue: Valtatie 30, Tampere

    October 7, 2015 


    Opening address


    • Ms. Hannele Pokka, Permanent Secretary of the Finnish Ministry of the Environment

    • Ms. CHEN Wen, Political Counselor, Embassy of the PRC in Finland


    Cities as business partners

    • Mr. Pauli Välimäki, Director, City of Tampere
    • Mr. Pekka Sundman, Director, City of Turku
    • Mr. Jonas Kamleh, Head of Unit, City of Malmö

    Panel discussion




    The Climate Change collaboration initiative between UC Berkeley and Tsinghua University

    Professor KANG Feiyu, Dean, Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, Chairman, WALCC


    Cities as innovation nurturers; learning from progressive cities

    Dr. Johan Wallin, managing partner, Synocus Group, Vice-Chairman, WALCC




    Quality, efficiency, and innovation: The case of Finnish Social and Health Sector;

    Dr. Mikael Forss, Director, Kela, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland


    Parallel sessions; mini-workshops

    • Health as platform for urban development, Chairperson: Professor Sven-Olof Isacsson, Lund University
    • Mobility as a service vs. automotive industry, Chairperson: Mr. Robert Galyen, CTO, CATL
    15.30 - 16.00


    16.00 - 16.30

    People flow as innovation enabler

    Ms. Hanna Uusitalo, Environmental director, KONE 

    16:30 - 17:00

    Aging and nursing home challenges in China

    Dr. YANG Yansui, Professor, Tsinghua University


    World Alliance for Low Carbon Cities; annual general meeting


    Reception, hosted by the City of Tampere, Raatihuone


    October 8, 2015 


    Cities as orchestrators of innovation and dynamic value constellations

    Dr. Mikael Paltschik, Associate Professor, Hanken School of Economics


    Parallel sessions; mini-workshops

    • Ageing as a catalyst for social innovations, Chairperson: Professor Olli Kangas, The Social Insurance Agency (KELA)
    • Systemic solutions for renewable energy, Chairperson: Research Professor Jari Kaivooja, University of Turku

    Health implications of environmental and social resources for preadolescents in China

    Dr. LI Wanxin, Associate Professor, City University of Hong Kong




    National – regional innovation collaboration

    • The Finnish perspective, Mr. Jari Konttinen, Director, The Confederation of Finnish Industries
    • The Chinese perspective, Professor KONG Ying, Director, Division of Social Science & Management, Tsinghua University
    • The Dutch perspective, Professor Marjolein Caniëls, Open University of the Netherlands

    Panel discussion




    Plenary discussion related to panel discussion


    Concluding remarks

    KANG Feiyu & Johan Wallin


    October 9, 2015 


    Visit to various sites organized by the City of Tampere

    • Fastems, leading provider of flexible manufacturing systems and robot cells to the metal cutting industries to automate the manufacturing and finishing processes
    • Mediapolis, an international campus that concentrates on content production and information & communications technology connected to the Tampere unit of the Finnish national broadcasting company YLE
    • FinnMedi, a company providing services related to business development and clinical research in the Life Sciences sector



    Forum attendees in need of accommodation during the forum (October 6-9) are eligible for a discounted rate at the Original Sokos Hotel Ilves (Hatanpäänvaltatie 1, 33100 Tampere). A limited number of superior, single and double rooms are available at the rate of €160 / night (single) or €180 / night (double). This rate includes a complimentary breakfast and use of the hotel’s sauna facilities.

    To gain this rate mention booking code WALCC when booking. All reservations must be made before September 15th.

    Phone: 020 1234631 Website

    Download a PDF copy ofthe latest agenda here.


    The Low-Carbon City Development World Forum is the main platform for encouraging partnership and an ecosystem-approach in sustainable development. By bringing together leading experts from a variety of industries, localities, and backgrounds, all sharing a strong interest in driving the development of low-carbon cities, the Forum helps to realize the full potential of this vast international network of cities, companies and research institutes. As we face unprecedented opportunities and challenges in the coming year, we are pleased to invite your organization to participate in the Low-Carbon City Development World Forum.

  • A Living Lab in the heart of town: an exercise in collaborative planning

    "Tammelantori idästä kuvattuna" by Teme007 - Oma teos. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tammelantori_id%C3%A4st%C3%A4_kuvattuna.JPG#mediaviewer/File:Tammelantori_id%C3%A4st%C3%A4_kuvattuna.JPG Upload Complete: /images/news-posts/Tammelantori_idst_kuvattuna.jpg

    "Tammelantori idästä kuvattuna" by Teme007 - Oma teos. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons 

    Come ask questions and voice your opinion in the Tammela square from September 15-25

    Cities can be made more ecologically sound and economically sustainable by increasing the density of our communities, particularly along improved public transportation networks. Tammela is quickly becoming a part of Tampere’s city center. This rising district has been selected as the focus of an urban densification pilot.

    Housing cooperatives own the majority of land plots in Tammela and play a central role in the area’s development.  The Tammela area will be the focus of considerable development efforts in the near future. This development has sparked the interest of local residents who are eager to contribute in the area’s development. In this interest, local residents have requested a public forum for interacting with City officials and those involved in planning the area’s future development. The “Office in the heart of town” is a mobile office space which will help to develop solutions to urban densification related issues, bringing together researchers from the University of Tampere, urban planners from the City of Tampere, and local residents.

    Researchers will be present at the office from 9am to 3pm daily. The office will host a variety of themed events during which local residents can ask questions and engage in discussion on the area’s future together with city planners and visiting experts.


    The office’s opening in the square will be marked on Monday, September 15th, by a visit from children from the Soilikki day-care center who will decorate the walls of the office with murals depicting their vision for the area’s future. A comprehensive range of material related to the area’s planning will be available at the office. Visitors are welcome to leave their feedback at the marked box outside of the office. Visitors can also pick up a brochure regarding infill construction in Tampere from the viewpoint of housing cooperatives.

    The theme for Wednesday, September 17th, will be “Tammela as a part of the center”. Architect Minna Seppänen will be at the office to discuss the City’s Center Initiative with visitors and the lead architect for the City’s master plan Dani Kulonpää will be available to discuss plans for the center in the context of the master plan between 11am and 2pm. Architect Anna Hyyppä will be available to talk about city planning and the project’s Land Manager Heli Toukoniemi will answer questions concerning land-use agreements between housing cooperatives and the City.

    On Thursday, Septmber 18th, the office will host the Pirkanmaa Real Estate Federation’s Executive Director Jorma Koutonen, who will talk about decision-making and funding of housing cooperatives while Jaakko Vihola of the Tampere University of Technology will present the calculation models utilized in densification projects from 1pm to 3pm. The theme for Friday, September 19th, will be “Eco-efficient Tammela”. The EU-Gugle and ECO2 initiatives as well as an energy-conservation app designed by Schneider Electric will be on display at the office.

    Discussion at the office on Saturday, September 20th, will focus on “Visions of Tammela today and in the future”. The Deputy Mayor Pekka Salmi will be present between 2pm and 3pm. Monday, September 22nd, marks international car-free day and the office’s theme for the day will focus on issues related to transportation and parking. Tuesday, September 23rd, will be focused on Tammela’s public services, while Wednesday, September 24th, the focus will turn to green area’s and parks. On Thursday, September 25th, researchers from the University will be on hand to present interviews conducted with housing cooperatives and the results of a project carried out by architecture students as well as the District Plans currently under development.

    Join us for discussion and a cup of coffee!

    For the latest information on the office project please see the program’s Facebook page.You can find the page on Facebook by searching for “Kontti keskellä kylää”. The project is part of Tampere’s Architecture Week.

    More information:

    Helena Leino, Head Researcher, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 040 190 9751

    Markus Laine, Researcher, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 044 503 6056

    Minna Santaoja, Office project organizer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 040 531 9342


    University of Tampere, Politics of Nature and the Environment Research Group (PONTE), Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation (SASUI) research program:

    http://www.uta.fi/jkk/en/research/themes/ponte/projects/sasui.html (in Finnish)

    http://walcc.org/index.php/programs/sasui (in English)


  • The latest newsletter features a preliminary agenda for this autumn's Low Carbon City Development World Forum in Tampere (October 7-9). 

    Further updates to the agenda will be noted on the event page, this page will also include registration information as it becomes available!



  • Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa, Tampere, Oulu and Turku joined 25 other cities from six countries in Europe and Latin America in launching the Open & Agile Smart Cities initiative on March 16th. The initiative aims to facilitate the development and implementation of smart city applications and solutions in cities across the world by making systems interoperable both between cities and within a city.

    The cities, including members from Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and Brazil, will serve as a network for companies in the smart city sector to develop their technology and services, providing a large scale network though which they can test and implement their solutions. The initiative also helps the participating cities to identify the best solutions to implement by offering an opportunity to evaluate the solutions based on results of implementation and actual usage experiences.

    The six Finnish cities, Finland’s largest, make up the 6Aika – Six City Strategy initiative which shares the OASC initiative’s open-data focused approach to sustainable urban development. 

    For more information on the Open & Agile Smart Cities initiative visit the Connected Smart Cites website 

    For more on the 6Aika – Six City Strategy initiative, see the initiative’s website 

  • Researchers from the University of Tampere took to the Tammela market square this week and welcomed local residents to engage with them in developing the area’s future. Housed in a large blue shipping container, a group of researchers from the University of Tampere set up a temporary information center for area residents interested in contributing to the ambitious, urban densification plans developed by the City. Building upon an extensive development process the City released a comprehensive Master Plan in 2012 which outlined the potential for new densification projects throughout the city.

    As the first of these densification projects began to take form a group of researchers set out to engage area residents to ensure that their opinions and concerns contribute to the development of the area. Due to the large amount of land plots owned by housing cooperatives, the success of the City’s densification plans rely even more heavily on the participation and enthusiasm of the area’s residents. In an effort to expand interaction between the area’s residents and those contributing to the City’s plans, researchers from the University of Tampere’s Politics of Nature and the Environment Research Group (PONTE) developed a model which enabled interaction over the an extended period and in a less formalized environment than typically found in the open-houses or community hearings commonly held by cities undertaking such projects.

    Wednesday’s program in the square saw a group of architects and officials from the City of Tampere closely involved with the development process as well as a representative from the local residents’ organization join the research group and engage in open discussion with visitors. The day saw a steady stream of interested citizens stopping by the container and engaging in enthusiastic discussion with the staff and the visiting architects, officials, and representatives. Discussions touched on a vast range of topics of interest, including such central issues as integrating cyclists into the city’s traffic system, improving public transit, ensuring sufficient and convenient parking for area residents, retaining the city’s green spaces, as well as the practicalities of starting densification projects on the level of an individual housing cooperative.

    The container’s walls were lined with information regarding the plans, including current aerial photographs of the area as well as the proposed plans for development. This array of instantly available information, spurred local residents visiting the container to voice their opinions and engage with the planning process, giving them a real-world context for the plans at hand and an immediate outlet for their contributions. The day’s interactions brought a wide range of perspectives on the area’s future and emphasized the crucial role which citizens play in the planning process by helping to guide development through their ideas and needs.

    For more on this project you can find it on Facebook (in Finnish)!

  • The Regions of Pirkanmaa and Skåne have signed a collaboration agreement to work together in the development of new smart city solutions and technologies. The agreement was signed at the Innovation Week event in Skåne. The regions will collaborate to drive business and innovations related to smart traffic, lighting, urban densification and renewal construction, as well as open data.

    For more information regarding the agreement see the Pirkanmaa Region’s website (in Finnish)


  • Registration for this autumn's Capabilities for Sustainable Urban Innovation - 9th Low Carbon City Development World Forum is now open. Register by August 31st to qualify for the early bird fee. 

    Visit the event page for a preliminary agenda and updates on accomodation details.

  • The Systemic Transitions Towards Low-Carbon Forum in Tampere October 7-9, 2014, was the most successful WALCC event ever organized in Europe. Three important factors contributed to the success of this forum: support from the city of Tampere, support from key WALCC corporate members, and a large Chinese delegation organized by Bosum Associatoin.

    The forum was organized by WALCC together with the strong support of the City of Tampere. This support was in further evidence as the City Mayor of Tampere Dr. Anna-Kaisa Itkonen declared in her opening speech that Tampere would be interested in hosting the 2015 WALCC Forum as well.

    The forum featured a series of key-note speeches from leading international low-carbon companies, researchers and city organizations, including those by Ms. Anna-Kaisa Ikonen, City Mayor of Tampere, Mr. Yu, Qingtai, Ambassador, Embassy of the PRC in Finland, Mr. Jukka Alasentie, Vice Mayor of the Region of Pirkanmaa, alongside those by representatives from leading companies such as WALCC members Schneider Electric, Amperex Technologies Limited and Kone, as well as others such as Wärtsilä, Bosum Association, and research organizations such as Aalto University, the University of Tampere, Tsinghua University’s Shenzhen Graduate School, South Korea’s Chonnam National University.

    Alongside the forum’s key-note speeches it also featured five mini-workshops: Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Development (SASUI), Smart mobility, Revamping urban districts, Built environment and Internet of Things, and Green hospitals. These mini-workshops gave forum participants an opportunity to contribute to the discussion following brief presentations from selected experts in the respective areas.

    The forum drew over 100 participants including some 40 participants from China as well as several Chinese speakers.

    For more information on the forum see the full forum agenda and please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

    7th Low Carbon City Development World Forum 1 


  • The Mayor of Tampere Anna-Kaisa Ikonen and City Director Juha Yli-Rajala, together with representatives from the City of Tampere, traveled to Malmö on the 28th of October will continue from there to Copenhagen on the 29th to study the urban development programs ongoing in the regions. Meeting with City representatives and planning officials, the visitors hope to glean useful knowledge from the experiences of those involved in these ddevelopm4ent processes which they can then apply to Tampere’s development.

    These cities serve as good points of comparison for Tampere as it undertake urban development projects similar to those already conducted in these areas, such as designing a new arena and expanded residential areas.

    The City of Tampere will partner with the Swedish cities of Malmö and Lund under the Smart City (Älykäs kaupunki) initiative and will use this opportunity to further detail their cooperation.

    Read more: Press release from the City of Tampere (in Finnish) 

  • The 2014 Eurocities conference, held in Munich from November 5-8, highlighted Tampere’s ITS Factory among the leading examples of public – private sector cooperation in European cities. Finishing third in the conference’s Coopreation theme, the ITS Factory was selected by a panel of five independent jury members representing the host city, academia, EU institutions, media, and the third sector.

    The ITS Factory is an innovation, experimentation, and development environment operated in cooperation by the city of Tampere and companies from relevant sectors. ITS Factory offers the tools developers need to create new services, including reliable, standard transport data, and crucially, it offers Tampere’s traffic and road network as a testbed for new solutions. ITS Factory brings together a community of likeminded stakeholders, whose services are currently being used by around 2,000 people a week.

    Read more about the conferenceand the ITS Factory 

  • As cities try to spur the innovativeness of their areas, those within city organizations must look not only to themselves but to each other as well as those around them. Can we improve our own operations? Who should we collaborate with? How should the collaboration be structured to ensure that the ‘right’ issues are addressed? How can we, efficiently, identify everyone’s interests and handle them constructively? Co-creation partnerships can therefore be considered as forms of social innovation, which can help to fuel those goals we consider important; such as low-carbon transportation solutions.

    The two-year, TEKES-funded Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation (SASUI) program aims to contribute to this goal through the efforts of researchers from Aalto University’s Department of Real Estate, Planning, and Geoinformatics and University of Tampere’s Politics of nature and the environment research group (PONTE), in co-operation with the cities of Espoo and Tampere, and together with the selected sub-contractor Synocus. The program is led by Professor Raine Mäntysalo who has a strong interest in the development of the 4P model (Public – Private – People –Partnership), a model which requires understanding the interests of various parties as well as the tensions between these parties. This theme will be assessed through the development of a number of urban areas, including Otaniemi and Keilaniemi in Espoo and, in Tampere, research will focus on the urban densification project underway in the Tammela region and the development of collaboration between the various parties involved.

    Synocus responsibilities in the research program include: conducting international benchmarking studies comparing and contrasting the efforts of city regions in Sweden and China that are also faced with the same challenges. This benchmarking will highlight interesting examples and precedents of the regional and local support structures developed for driving sustainability and low-carbon innovation in urban planning which can benefit Finnish cities. Points of comparison in Finland include the ‘Innovation Garden’; an area consisting of Otaniemi, Tapiola, and Keilaniemi, providing support for the area’s development, guiding the form of co-operation, and the evolution of the area’s branding. Similarly, the SASUI program will support Tampere’s activities as the head of the Smart Cities section of the national Innovative Cities (INKA) program. The INKA program’s goal is to foster novel forms of co-operation between private sector companies and public sector organizations in developing new, commercially viable innovations and expertise for the global market.

    The SASUI program is connected to the international World Alliance for Low Carbon Cities (WALCC). The WALCC is a non-profit organization aimed at supporting the development of low-carbon cities. The alliance supports its members’ efforts to adopt low-carbon technologies by providing them with information on the industry’s latest developments and by arranging networking events. The SASUI program provides the WALCC with a source of information regarding the latest developments to support the research and development goals of its members, further collaborative initiatives spurred by the program, as well as providing updates of the program’s progress.

    The SASUI program will be represented at the 7th annual Low Carbon Development World Forum organized by the WALCC. The forum will be held at the Tampere Hall in Tampere, Finland, from October 7-9.

    Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation program details

    Duration: 2014-2015

    Budget: €620,000 (including funding from outside sources as well as the funding provided by participating universities; TEKES funding accounts for €372,000)

    Websites: http://walcc.org/index.php/programs/sasui



    Participating parties: Aalto University, University of Tampere, City of Espoo, City of Tampere, Synocus

    Program manager: Prof. Raine Mäntysalo

    Program contact persons: Kaisa Schmidt-Thomé (Aalto University), Helena Leino (University of Tampere), and Johan Wallin (Synocus)


Reframing City Districts (ReCiDi)

A research project conducted by the Universities of Turku and Tampere which aims to form a new conceptual framework which will help shape the collective identity and common vision necessary to realize the future low-carbon and sustainability targets.

Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation (SASUI)

An action learning and research project conducted by Aalto University and the University of Tampere which aimed to form a better understanding of the architectural requirements for successful innovation projects.