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Roadmaps for Energy

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - R4E (Roadmaps for Energy)

Reporting period: 2015-03-01 to 2016-08-31

The actual implementation of strategies and plans continues to be a difficult exercise. Public authorities often lack the capacities and skills to plan and implement sustainable energy policies and measures. Within the Roadmaps for Energy (R4E) project, new participative and co-creative methodologies and processes are demonstrated, supporting cities in executing their tasks related to achieving the EU energy efficiency objectives.

R4E focuses on developing vision creation and roadmapping capacities within municipalities to initiate joint activities to spur development and implementation of innovative energy solutions in cities.
The ultimate aim is to implement a process that allows the partners to develop roadmaps for the various themes that together form the Energy Roadmap towards their ambition of becoming Smart Cities. R4E focuses on three areas within the domain of sustainable energy: 1. Smart buildings, 2. Smart mobility, and 3. Smart urban spaces.
The impact of the R4E project is that the visions will enable short term activities and decisions with a long term perspective.
The consortium consists of 8 cities : Eindhoven (Project Coordinator), Forlì, Istanbul, Newcastle, Murcia, Palermo, Sant Cugat del Vallès and Tallinn; and two knowledge partners: Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC).

In the R4E project a 4-step process is applied. During the FIRST step, the ambitions of the participating cities on sustainable energy and Smart Cities in general are set, as well as the partner cities’ choice for 2 focus areas within Smart buildings, Smart mobility or Smart urban spaces. The SECOND step is to develop desired scenarios for the cities for the selected focus areas. During the THIRD step the roadmap will be created, existing and future technologies and other developments will be identified, which enable the realization of the desired future scenarios. Opportunities and developments will be plotted on a time-line to provide insight in the required steps and milestones towards the favoured scenarios. The roadmaps will contain generic parts that are common for the partner cities, as well as specific parts that cater for the specific context of the cities. During the FOURTH step a project portfolio will be generated with new projects and initiatives to reach the ambitions, visions and roadmaps of the cities. This portfolio provides an overview of individual and joint projects and includes a cross-city learning plan and a financial plan.
During the first 18 months of R4E, the partners successfully finalised step 1 and 2 of the R4E approach and started with step 3.
In the first ten months the project focused on step 1, targeting the question: “What aspiration does the city have for the future?”. 3-days Ambition Workshops with local stakeholders were held in each partner city, to get a deep understanding of the ambitions and specific contexts of the cities and during which the ambitions of the participating cities on sustainable energy in general were defined/refined in a co-creation process, using existing policy documents as a basis for workshops.
Step 2 of the R4E approach consisted of Future Telling Interviews, Scenario Workshops in the cities, and selecting topics for the roadmaps in the Joint Vision Workshop. Future Telling interviews took place with 25 experts from industry, knowledge institutes and governments, to get their view on the future of sustainable energy in the cities towards the year 2050.
From October 2015 until May 2016, 3-day Scenario Workshops were held with local stakeholders in each partner city to co-create visualisations of the Desired Future Scenarios for 2050.
The third step, the Roadmapping, started in January 2016 with desk studies to collect available information and identify important experts on future options for the three R4E focus areas. A Roadmapping training took place for the knowledge partners on the creation of roadmaps. The findings of the desk studies were used in the Joint Vision Workshop (end of step 2) in in-depth discussions with the city representatives responsible for the focus areas, to select topics for the roadmapping interviews and to identify the most important experts to be invited for the interviews.
From May until October 2016, UPC and TU/e had Roadmap interviews with approximately 65 experts of industry, knowledge institutes and governmental organisations from all over Europe, in the field of sustainable energy in Smart buildings, Smart mobility and Smart urban spaces, covering the elements of technology, behaviour and organisation.
In the coming months, the Roadmapping activities will continue.
Each step is followed by a Joint Workshop where all R4E partners meet to enable sharing and cross-city learning on the latest results, and to discuss and prepare the next steps.
These activities resulted in the following reports, available and published on the R4E website:
- ‘Report Vision Development’ contains the results of the Vision Development activities.
- ‘Report Future Telling 2050’ describes the Drivers for Change that impact the future of sustainable energy in cities in 2050.
- ‘Report Ambition Setting’ contains all results of the Ambition Setting activities.
All actions taken include project meetings and Communication & Dissemination activities. Relevant publications and news can be found on the R4E website and through its social media channels.
- A strong point of R4E is that a sense of ownership among local stakeholders is generated, by involving them in every step of the R4E approach from the beginning. In total, approximately 275 stakeholders have been involved in the workshops.
- Involving stakeholders through this R4E approach, generated a so-called ‘snowball effect’; most of the stakeholders stay interested in the process, even trigger the interest of other possible stakeholders, and improve or intensify relations with the city organisation due to this early and close involvement.
- Active participation and involvement of people working at the municipal organisation is crucial! Not only for the political and local support to successfully implement the roadmaps and related projects, but also to spread knowledge about the creation of these visions and roadmaps, so that they can apply the same approach also in other policy fields and priorities.
- Preparing and organising the city workshops have proven to be a learning point, presenting itself as an opportunity to improve the internal communication among the partners’ municipal staff.
- Networks created among R4E partners: Besides the regular enrichment by working together in the same consortium, the cross-city interaction within R4E, supports the development of ideas and mutual learning, exchange of experiences, challenges and best practices among the partners.

Summarizing, and besides the impact that the project is expected to deliver, R4E especially has an impact on the ecosystems of stakeholders among relevant local parties in each city, among R4E partners, and with recognised thought leaders. This ecosystem is laying the foundation for extended collaboration between partners to drive innovation for sustainability purposes, through joint projects. We have learned that new solutions require new practices and cooperation, moving towards continuous innovation, and that cooperation and cross-learning can spur further developments.
R4E Workshops
Visualisation of Roadmaps
Four step process of R4E
R4E Scenario Workshop
R4E focus areas
Official R4E logo