Our Tier 1 Cities





Donostia in Spain 

Donostia/San Sebastian is a medium size city and the capital of Gipuzkoa, a well-developed industrial and tertiary region of the Basque Country. Donostia is a services-oriented city with active tourism and trade activities. Its economy is based on a diversified and small enterprise business sector (MSME & SME). The economic crisis has affected the city’s employment rates and employment is currently well below the national average. 


Donostia in Europe 

Donostia is geographically and culturally closely connected to the rest of Europe, situated only 20 miles from the French border. Donostia will be European Capital of Culture 2016. Donostia leads the European project STEEP (Systems Thinking for Comprehensive City Efficient Energy Planning) under which there is a Smart City plan and a Smart City Action plan (a pilot plan) to be developed in the Urumea Riverside District.







Resilience Goals

As a coastal city, Donostia has a close relationship with the sea and aims to implement holistic resilience measures to effectively resist and recover from flooding, coastal vulnerabilities and climate change induced events including severe storms and galernas. The city hopes to develop the capability to self-asses its resilience development progress, develop a comprehensive resilience initiative to cope with significant elements of hazards, to improve infrastructure, technological information and data integration, and to learn to monitor and evaluate the initiatives implemented. 



Planning Donostia

Donostia/San Sebastián is undertaking several actions in the areas of smart energy, lighting, recycling, public space smart design, sustainable and ICT. The city leads the European project STEEP (Systems Thinking for Comprehensive City Efficient Energy Planning) that includes a Smart City plan and a pilot Smart City Action plan to be developed in the Urumea Riverside District. The city is working towards active ageing and was among the first ten cities globally to join the WHO Age Friendly Cities network. It is now implementing the DSS Lagunkoia-Age friendly City plan and actions to promote the emerging assistive technology sector are also underway.

The Encouragement of Economic Growth plan PEED promotes job creation, entrepreneurship and economic revitalization and the Director Plan of Citizens Participation aims to develop active citizenship. After the implementation the city’s first Strategic Plan in 2010 of the city, Donostia implemented the E2020DSS Strategy. The city is also planning against flooding and coastal vulnerabilities (Flood Risk Management Plan) and was one of the first cities in Spain to promote a Local Plan against Climate Change. It has signed the Mayor’s Climate Protection Agreement, committing to developing concrete measures in order to reduce greenhouse gases, and has also introduced a Local Environmental Action Plan-Agenda 21 and an Environmentally Sustainable Energy Plan.

The tools developed by the Smart Mature Resilience project will be piloted, implemented and evaluated in Donostia in cooperation with Donostia’s partner research institution, TECNUN. 




Resilience Engagement


  Mayor’s Climate Protection Agreement



City factsheet

Population (metropolitan area)

Population (municipality)

Surrounding mountains


323 357 

186 510

Ulia, Igeldo and Urgul

Urumea River 









This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 653569.