The SMACC strategic partnership will focus on the introduction of training concept for “smart city coaches” with a view to introduce this role at different levels of society as multipliers for the development and support of smart cities. By fostering these issues of sustainable cities throughout public, private, social organisations, the creation of local innovations, entrepreneurship and job opportunities will be stimulated in the mid-term.
Smart City initiatives and projects have become increasingly important throughout Europe for several reasons:
- to cope with the challenges of climate change, urbanization and demographical trends
- to increase the energy and resource efficiency in urban regions
- to find innovative solutions for green urban mobility or
- to introduce ICT-solutions for urban supply processes and infrastructure.
However, most of these projects focus on technical innovations (green urban technologies, ICT) and are often top down driven by investors, global technology concerns or building developers. This approach excludes other urban actors that could play a crucial role for the quality of the results and the broad acceptance of the solutions for urban challenges. In fact, it is important for the successful implementation of smart cities to address social innovations, such as new forms of collaboration, open innovation approaches, new business models based on peer-to-peer transactions, participation and organisational innovations, etc., mutual learning processes and questions related to urban quality of life.
Therefore SMACC wants to change approach and addresses the most relevant urban actor groups of the sustainable city as target groups:
- decision makers in public administrations and enterprises, science, research
- citizens and civil society organisations
Aims and Objectives
Several needs have been identified which will be addressed by SMACC. Specifically, these needs will be covered by the smart city coaching concept as an innovative approach for multi-stakeholder capacity building:
- Achieving cross-sectorial learning processes at all levels of society including out of the box thinking, critical thinking, and better understanding/accepting the interests of different actors in the field of urban development processes
- Supporting integrative, cooperative and open planning methods in urban development processes (e.g. urban living labs, public participation, etc.), bringing together top down and bottom up forces
- Identifying the job opportunities related to smart cities and strengthening the entrepreneurial and innovation capacities (such as: new forms of collaboration, open innovation, social entrepreneurship, new business models such as sharing economy, creative industries)
- Bringing sustainable lifestyles into the people’s minds in different fields of action, such as: mobility, energy & resource consumption, smart living, sustainable consumption, etc.
- Increasing the general knowledge about the state of the art of green urban technologies in order to promote them by giving qualified impulses to investors/city administration or building developer
- Realising the system integration of green urban technologies on the level of city districts/quarters
Impact and Innovation
As stated before, existing smart cities projects generally focus on technical innovations (green urban technologies, ICT) and are often top down driven. This approach excludes other urban actors that should play a more crucial role for the quality of results and broad acceptance of the solutions for urban challenges.
In fact, it is important for the successful implementation of smart cities to address social innovations (new forms of collaboration, open innovation approaches, new business models based on peer-to-peer transactions, participation and organisational innovations, etc.) mutual learning processes and questions related to urban quality of life.
The innovative part of the project can be therefore summarized as follows:
- the cross-sectorial approach of the topics covered (from smart governance, to smart business and consumers up to smart citizenship)
- the active involvement of different levels of society into the training sessions (public administrations, enterprises, science, research, NGOs, civil society)
- the training concept will be highly interactive and could be organised as urban living labs.
The project will contribute towards the impact of cities in terms of:
- innovation (new multi-target training approaches),
- exchange of experience (among relevant actors in cities where the concept has been introduced – public authorities,
- entrepreneurs, research organisations, citizens and civil society organisations - as well as where it is a new concept)
- know how (again, involving actors where the concepts has been brought at a certain level as well as, in a second phase, where the concept is still new but has been already brought at a higher level of attention).
Additionally the project will develop, transfer and/or implement innovative practices at organisational (local and regional) levels in the domain selected. Special emphasis will be put on practices and training concepts for generating social innovations (e.g. urban living lab approaches).
Who is implementing SMACC?
SMACC has been developed by a transnational consortium, specifically set up for the purpose of implementing the project. It involves 7 actors from 6 Erasmus+ countries and namely the NerosuBianco (project coordinator) and CRAVEB (Scientific Consortium for Industrial Research and Engineering) in Italy, Pannon Business Network Association in Hungary, Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia, StadtLABOR Graz Innovationen für urbane Lebensqualität in Austria, Militos Consulting S.A. in Greece, NHL Hogeschool in the Netherlands.
All project partners have been selected based on the following criteria:
- expertise on at least one of the areas covered by the project (smart governance, smart business, smart citizens) which had to be proven by providing evidence of one local, regional, national or EU funded initiative
- previous cooperation with the Lead Partner and with at least other 2 participating organizations
- being able to involve at least one public actor which should test and validate the practices and sign a Letter of Intent with it
- agree on common project management and financial standards
- allow us to be able to perform a two level testing:
- the first one in countries where the "smart concept" has already reached good levels of awareness
- the second one in countries where less experiences have been put in practice and where the project may be of great added value.
The following cities have expressed their commitment to participate through a letter of intent:
- City of Rome
- City of Neaples
- Confcommercio Veneto
- City of Graz
- Municipality of Becej
- Municipality of Apatin