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Urban_Wins Report Summary

Project ID: 690047
Funded under: H2020-EU.3.5.4.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Urban_Wins (Urban metabolism accounts for building Waste management Innovative Networks and Strategies)

Reporting period: 2016-06-01 to 2017-11-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Urban_Wins has the challenge to overcome the limits linked to the implementation of the urban metabolism approach for the development of waste prevention and management strategies and to make waste policies more innovative and more sustainable. The quantification of the requirements of materials to support human activities in cities, including the removal and disposal of waste, is the first step towards the representation of the urban metabolism and the enhancement of processes of circular economy at urban level. Progress towards urban sustainability will depend largely on the reduction of resource input on one hand and the further reduction of waste on the other hand. It is necessary to improve the set of analytical tools used for the analysis of the urban metabolism and to fill the gap of knowledge and understanding of how the urban metabolism approach can orientate and support decision-making processes. The proactive involvement of citizens and businesses in co-designing and co-realising actions for waste prevention and waste recovery and reuse and to stimulate better informed and sustained public decisions has also to be stimulated.
The scope of the project is to develop and test methods for designing and implementing innovative and sustainable Strategic Plans for Waste Prevention and Management in 8 pilot cities based inter-disciplinary and participatory approaches. Communities of pilot cities involved in Urban_Wins shall benefit from the activation of lifestyle and behaviour changes lasting over time and leading to improved quality of life.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Waste prevention and management strategies adopted across the 6 targeted countries (Austria, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Spain and Sweden) were analysed together with the strategies adopted in 27 European municipalities and 2 Metropolitan cities.
The Model Architecture of the UMAn Model, that is being applied to describe in a quantitative way the urban metabolism of 8 pilot cities (Albano Laziale, Bucharest, Cremona, Leiria, Manresa, Pomezia, Sabadell and Torino), was designed and a long process of data collection started in all countries, following common guidelines. Data availability resulted very different for each city involved and alternative data sources and data estimation methods are now being defined to enable the calculation or urban metabolism indicators,.
The Urban_Wins participatory framework was established and operationalised via the launch of online and face-to-face agoras. The online agoras can be freely accessed by urban stakeholders across Europe and provide a space for share and discussion of relevant thematics. The face-to-face agoras were launched in the 8 pilot cities and work following a common working path and adopting the same participatory tools and approaches. 572 people took part in the meetings of the face-to-face agoras realised until the end of November 2017, while the online agoras currently have 438 users and the number is expected to double by the end of the project.
Pilot cities representatives were trained in occasion of a technical meeting in Venice in February 2017 in order to be prepared to face the challenge of elaborating their own Strategic Framework for Waste Prevention and Management based on the urban metabolism approach. Methodological guidelines were elaborated and cities are following them.
A project communication and dissemination strategy was designed and is in place. Besides the project website Urban_Wins makes a significant use of social media (facebook, twitter, instagram) and released an e-newsletter, a leaflet and an animated video (accessible from ICLEI's youtube channel). Several project events took place, including a kick-off conference, national seminars, a webinar, a CityMatch. Also, the 26th Breakfast at Sustainability's (B@S) event on fostering policy exchange with local governments on the topic of Innovative urban waste reduction strategies – was held in Brussels.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Urban_Wins research and innovation activities will enhance the advancement in the state of the art in urban waste management and in the operationalization of the urban metabolism approach for sustainable urban development. Knowledge on the field of intervention of the urban metabolism approach will be improved and its feasibility and accuracy explored into depth thanks to the implementation of the UMAn model in the 8 pilot cities. Advancements in the participatory and science-based decision-making and planning for waste management and risk prevention are expected and have been partly achieved already. Stakeholders participating the 8 agoras created in the pilot cities include PAs, businesses, NGOs, citizens that are contributing to the elaboration of the city's strategic planning frameworks based on urban metabolism approach.
Urban_Wins will contribute to:
- the establishment of European research and innovation leadership in urban waste prevention and management.
- collectively built, gender-sensitive solutions to promote eco-innovative urban management.
- increase the competitiveness of soil-ecology-construction-waste treatment-related industries.
- enhance environmental resilience in urban areas and quality of life in Europe and internationally.
Until now stakeholders have developed and discussed 164 action proposals corresponding to 34 priorities for waste prevention and management, covering energy, water, waste and air emission flows and addressing several types of waste (municipal waste, WEEE, construction waste, food and organic waste, paper and industrial waste) and economic sectors (building, tourism, agriculture, wholesale and retail trade, service activities, education, NGOs). It is expected that at least 5.000 citizens from each pilot city will be directly or indirectly positively affected by the implemented waste strategic initiatives.
Local strategic action plans that will be implemented following the contents of the strategic planning frameworks will bring about measurable environmental benefits in the areas of natural resource consumption, waste production, material reuse and recycling.
Indirect positive benefit will stem from the reduction of air, soil and water emissions; greenhouse gases emissions; use of dangerous substances; soil use and biodiversity protection.
Positive social impacts are also expected by the implementation of Urban_Wins as the projects aims to clarify and highlight the linkages between urban waste prevention and better management, in particular through the adoption of life cycle thinking and circular economy principles, on urban welfare and quality of life. Urban stakeholders are engaged in the design and prioritizing of actions so that social benefits can also be recognized and maximized. In addition, via the creation and promotion of online and physical urban agoras, urban stakeholders will have a space for dialogue and knowledge sharing where they will be able on one side to give more evidence and voice to critical issues that affect them, on the other side to adhere to a common set of values and proposals “for the common good”: this will strengthen their sense of belonging to the community and further stimulate their own contribution to the improvement of the urban environment, hence of quality of life in cities.

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