The 9th Informed Cities Forum (ICF) was held online from October 26th to 28th 2021, engaging 173 dreamers, thinkers and doers from 56 cities and 35 countries in an unconventional cross-sectoral discussion about Urban Sustainability. Under the title  “Re-purpose. Re-charge. Re-think. Heritage and e-mobility at the crossroads”, the programme unfolded over a total of 10 sessions, featuring 45 speakers including European Commission officers; local representatives from innovating pilot cities such as Bremen, Barcelona, Venice and Vitoria-Gasteiz; technological partners such as Google and SINTEF; social innovators such as Eutropian and Platoniq; and academic institutions including Universities of Oslo, Uppsala, Campagnia and the Metropolitan Research Institute in Budapest. Theoretical frameworks and practical approaches were presented through flagship interventions, inspiring stories of change and lessons learnt across Europe, from Athens to Newcastle, from Porto to Lviv and beyond. 

How do cultural heritage and electric mobility shape our cities in the future?

> Watch all the recorded sessions here
> Read the conference report here

The 9th ICF edition was led by ICLEI Europe, co-hosted by the Horizon 2020 projects OpenHeritage and GreenCharge funded by the European Commission and organised in partnership with CIVITAS 2030. The event offered a chance not only to think about the way we physically move within our communities, but also to imagine how to move forward with cultural and technological transitions to sustainability.

Highlights of this virtual journey included the following sessions of the Heritage Boulevard, hosted by OpenHeritage:

  • New European Bauhaus: How can we adapt and reuse our cultural heritage to create more beautiful, sustainable and inclusive living spaces?
  • European Year of Rail: How can obsolete rail infrastructure be transformed into creative hubs, cultural venues and ecological exemplars?
  • Accessibility of Cultural Heritage: How does electric mobility impact or improve heritage sites, and how can we ensure access to culture beyond physical, technological and social barriers?
  • Local experiences re-examined: How are bottom-up initiatives using heritage to help their local communities overcome the pandemic?

The Informed Cities initiative, which makes research work for local sustainability, is a European initiative driven by ICLEI, the global network of 2500+ local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. The initiative aims to bridge the gap between research, policy-making and action in sustainable development, at and for the local level. The Informed Cities Forum (ICF) is an established “un-conference” enabling urban practitioners to learn from the present and collaboratively plan for the future in the most unusual spaces, offline and online. Sign up to the Informed Cities newsletter here.