Europe works on its cities
The Aalborg Commitments aimed at governments are a set of written intentions that emerged from the Fourth European Conference on Sustainable Cities & Towns held in 2004 in Aalborg, Denmark. The EU-funded project 'Aalborg Commitments tools and resources' (ACTOR) sought to develop a set of resources and tools for towns and cities across Europe that will help EU countries meet the Aalborg Commitments. The project team researched the needs and aspirations of various EU governments through workshops to build and fine-tune this important toolkit, developing as well an accompanying implementation guide. The guide comprises five steps of the sustainability management cycle and is also a valuable tool for local governments to promote urban sustainability. Both are meant to support the European 'Sustainable cities and towns' campaign networks in addition to other similar initiatives. In effect, ACTOR built a comprehensive database to help local authorities find information and guidance that assist in implementing sustainable development policies and the Aalborg Commitments. The information is provided by country and by commitment, outlining as well good practice, knowledge centres, policy, legislation and tools. Plans were also established to strengthen the database, translate it into six more languages and update it continuously. It can be accessed through the web portal and provides a wealth of information on the topic. Through the ACTOR initiative and corresponding website, European towns and cities are set to become better places to live in.