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EEA report highlights need for urban resilience to tackle climate change effects

19 July 2016

The European Environment Agency (EEA) has published a new report entitled ‘Urban adaptation to climate change in Europe 2016 – transforming cities in a changing climate’. The report provides an in-depth overview of the actions that urban planners and policymakers can take to reduce the impact of climate change, and stresses the benefits of investing in long-term preventive measures. ICLEI Europe is a co-author of the report and also supported the EEA in coordinating its production.

European cities are increasingly susceptible to the negative aspects of climate change, which are expected to increase in frequency and intensity with extreme events such as heatwaves, flooding, water scarcity and droughts. At the same time, social, economic and demographic changes can make cities more vulnerable. These can greatly impact a wide range of city functions, infrastructure and services such as energy, transport and water, and will affect urban quality of life.

The report recommends that to meet these challenges, cities must take a wider systemic approach that addresses the root causes of vulnerability to climate change. This includes better urban planning, with more green areas that can retain excess rainwater or cool dense city centres in hot weather, or by preventing the construction of houses in flood-prone areas. This approach can transform cities into much more attractive, climate-resilient and sustainable places to live and work.

For more information and to read the report, visit


SMR an example of building bridges between researchers and practitioners

18 July 2016

Jose Julio Gonzalez delivered a plenary presentation on the SMR project entitled "Stalking resilience: Making cities vertebrae in society's resilience backbone" as an invited speaker for the first plenary session of the International Joint Conference - CIO-ICIEOM-IISE-AIM (IJC2016). The conference focussed on co-creation, taking as its motto "Building bridges between researchers and practitioners”.

The conference took place at TECNUN-School of Engineering (San Sebastián, Spain) on July 13th-15th, 2016. It aimed to provide a forum to disseminate, to all branches of industry, information on the most recent and relevant research, theories and practices in Industrial Engineering, Management and Operations. The joint conference is a result of an agreement between ADINGOR (Asociación para el Desarrollo de la Ingeniería de Organización), ABEPRO (Associação Brasileira de Engenharia de Produção), AIM (European Academy for Industrial Management) and IISE (Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers), and it will take place at TECNUN-School of Engineering (San Sebastián, Spain) from July 13th-15th, 2016.


Over 120 participants attend 3rd Open European Day in Bonn

12 July 2016

Representatives from European cities met in Bonn (Germany) on 5 July to discuss their experiences and successful strategies for adapting to climate change at the 3rd Open European Day at Bonn Resilient Cities. The event was attended by over 120 cities and climate change adaptation experts. As resilience development is not only a response to the challenges caused by climate change but also an opportunity to mitigate climate change and reduce risk, the importance of taking a holistic approach was a recurring theme. As noted by Jerry Velasquez of UNISDR, while cities are engines of growth, they are also driving increases in risk.

Amongst many first-hand contributions by cities, Marie Gantois shared Paris’ (France) successful experience with refurbishing and retrofitting buildings to save energy and improve thermal comfort. Jonathan Sadler demonstrated how green infrastructure has been the key to driving green growth in the City of Manchester (UK). Thessaloniki (Greece) gained the public’s support for resilience measures by communicating the relationship between resilience and the issues most affecting citizens: employment and the economy. Further examples of cities’ input are included in an animated video from the day. The event report will be published after the summer break.

The closing session of the event saw the launch of the European Environment Agency report Urban adaptation to climate change in Europe 2016. The 3rd Open European Day was organised by ICLEI and the European Environment Agency and co-organised by the Placard and RESIN projects, and supported by the European Commission - DG CLIMA and DG Research, and the European Investment Bank.

For more information, visit the Open European Day website.


Group Explorer tool applied in practice at Rome workshop

8 July 2016

The Smart Mature Resilience project partners met in Rome in February 2016 for a workshop on the topic of social problems organised by the University of Strathclyde. The meeting included testing and use of the Group Explorer tool, which has been developed by Strathclyde. In use, the Group Support System allows participants to interact directly with the developing model (shown on a ‘public’ screen) via networked consoles.

The system uses a ‘Transitional Object’, which is a continuously changing causal map on the screen that can be seen by all. It allows anonymity, high levels of productivity, the exploration of consensus and differences of view, and it produces a real-time log of all interactions for exploration off-line.

The meeting was organised by the University of Strathclyde and hosted by the City of Rome. Watch the video about the workshop produced by the City of Rome.


SMR project presented at international events

7 July 2016

The Smart Mature Resilience project was presented at a number of international conferences in recent months. Iker Zubizarreta, Tecnun, presented the project Euconcip final conference in Brussels from 8-9 June 2016. Click here to download the conference agenda.

The project was further presented at the CIPRNet International Symposium in The University of British Columbia (Vancouver, Canada). Click here to download the programme.

Project partners also represented SMR at the 4th Community of Users meeting on Natural Hazards, 22nd June 2016, in Brussels in addition to the other four projects funded under the same call.

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