22 October 2020, 09:30 - 11:00

Social Innovation for Energy Transitions

In light of the climate crisis, Europe urgently needs a radical transformation of its energy systems. Local governments have long been at the forefront of this change, helping to shape a decentralised and renewable energy future alongside their citizens. This lab, co-organised by Energy Cities and ICLEI Europe, will offer a chance to discover new tools and processes for accelerating the energy transition, rooted in the experience of cities participating in three EU-funded projects (SONNET, TOMORROW and UrbanA).

Participants will learn about social innovation in energy transitions. Different approaches to city-level energy transitions – their respective activities, their different operational contexts and the role of local governments as drivers of energy transitions – form the basis for the session. Participants will be able to take inspiration from presentations, interact with each city case study, and take part in discussions between practitioners from city administrations, politics and civil society. 

Part I: Introduction to social innovation in energy transitions 

After a short ice-breaker for participants, the session will start with an introduction to the concept of social innovation in energy transitions. That will be followed by a short presentation on the four projects and pitches of the various case studies in breakout rooms. 

Part II: Supercharging your energy transition process: learning and sharing session 

Each breakout room will be kicked off and run by someone involved in the case study in question. In a world café format, the participants will learn about and discuss the city case studies, the degrees of social innovation and the potential and possible role for local governments. The case studies range from participatory planning approaches with citizens to change management in city administration, and from promoting individual behavioural changes to developing energy transition roadmaps. The discussions will be recorded on MURAL.

Part III: Concluding perspectives and outlook 

The learning and sharing session will end with a summary for each breakout room moderator. The insights generated will be gathered in a short series of one-on-one interviews. Moderators and participants will reflect on these through online polls. With a concluding interaction, participants will be invited to follow the projects most relevant to them.

Speakers:

  • Jana Deforche, European Officer Urban Development: Energy & Environment, City of Antwerp, Belgium.
  • Joao Dinis, Office Coordinator, Empresa Municipal de Ambiente de Cascais (EMAC), City of Cascais, Portugal.
  • Fabien Dupre, Energy Transition Service - Energy Sobriety, City of Grenoble, France.
  • Donna Gartland, Chief Executive Officer, Codema - Dublin's Energy Agency, Ireland.
  • Alejandro Gómez Gil, Energy Innovation Officer, Valencia Climate and Energy, Spain.
  • Jason Nardi, Member of the coordination committee, RIPESS Europe, Italy.
  • Agnes Schönfelder, Director of the Climate Change Strategy Department and CEO of the Climate Action Agency Mannheim, City of Mannheim, Germany.

For more information about the European Week of Regions and Cities, and to register for the event (before 27 September!), please click here.