A workshop held in Finland last week, as part of the Systemic Architectures for Sustainable Urban Innovation (SASUI) project, addressed one of the most pressing challenges in low-carbon city development, the formation of collaborative partnerships between the public and private sectors as well as the public. The workshop was held over two days (Thursday, February 5th and Friday, February 6th) in Tampere and Espoo, Finland. Hosted together by members of the SASUI project (Aalto University, the University of Tampere, and Synocus).
The workshop included a visit to Tampere, hosted by the University of Tampere, which introduced the participating group of visiting researchers, from Belgium, Italy, Sweden, and China, to an ongoing urban development project in the city, the Tammela project. Researchers from the University of Tampere were joined by Minna Seppänen from the City of Tampere’s Planning department in presenting the ongoing development and the partnerships and collaborative networks involved.
On Friday the workshop moved to Aalto University’s Urban Mill in Espoo where the day’s presentations addressed three core themes, moving from urban living labs to systemic capability building for urban transition, the role of the local government and national frameworks in supporting innovativeness towards low-carbon urban development, and enabling public-private-people partnerships in urban planning and development with sensitivity to institutional/systemic constraints.
The group of visiting researchers reflected the SASUI project’s global perspective on the development of architectures for urban innovation, including participants from Belgium (Annette Kuhk, KU Leuven), Italy (Grazia Concilio & Emma Puerari, Politecnico di Milano), Sweden (Peter Parker, Malmö University), as well as Ben Chiang from Tsinghua University’s Shenzhen Graduate School who joined the workshop as a representative of the World Alliance for Low Carbon Cities and discussed his ongoing research on Shenzhen’s traffic system.
The two-day workshop provided the SASUI project’s contributing researchers with an opportunity to share perspectives on the development of new forms of collaboration and partnership in urban development and city planning, offering a truly global perspective on the various approaches to this important aspect of sustainable urban development.