The Eurocities Awards call for entries has closed on Monday 7, February.
The three award categories this year are ‘Future generations transforming the cities’, ‘Skills and competences for the future’ and ‘Scalable solutions for positive climate impact’.
Who can enter?
For Espoo 2022 we invited applications in three categories:
Social exclusion and disconnection have increased among children and young people because of the pandemic. As a result, cities have gone beyond familiar modes of operation to find new ways of creating togetherness and inclusion with and for children and young people.
We are looking for initiatives and activities which aim at increasing social cohesion and a sense of belonging among children and/or youth. We are especially interested in new approaches which have a potential to become partly or fully a mainstream practice in the future and are co-created with partners. The project may address several age and target groups, but the benefit for children and/or young people (0–29 years) must be evident. Initiatives taking vulnerable groups into account are especially appreciated.
In cities across Europe, there is a significant mismatch between the supply of labour and the demand for new skills and competences. This limits the economic growth potential and leaves many residents without meaningful work and a steady income. People working in sectors that are facing the transforming effects of digitalisation and residents representing the immigrant communities often face the effects of this labour market mismatch more than others. The cities have a role in fighting the negative effects of this mismatch.
We are looking for projects and actions that have successfully developed the skills and competences of the labour force to meet the demand from employers. We welcome co-created projects that have significantly boosted employment and the wellbeing of residents.
European cities play a key role in ensuring that the common targets of the European Green Deal and Agenda 2030 will be reached. Cities act as innovation hubs where new solutions can be tested and demonstrated and are key actors in building trust and cooperation between diverse stakeholders. Enabling and engaging citizens in climate actions is a key element in ensuring a fair and inclusive transition towards climate-neutral cities.
We are looking for participatory projects and actions that lead the transformation towards low-carbon, resilient, biodiverse and ultimately climate-neutral cities. We welcome co-created, inclusive solutions that contribute towards the ambitious 1.5 °C target. These projects should both reduce CO2 emissions in cities and include innovative actions and new approaches ensuring a high level of citizen engagement.
Awards – Jury
The Eurocities Awards entries are judged by an independent jury with representatives from the host city Espoo and EU institutions, an expert in the context of the call, a representative from civil society and a media representative.
Markku Markkula - Chair of the jury, President of the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Board
Markku Markkula is the President of the Helsinki Region. He is Vice-President of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), having been the CoR President in 2015-2017. He has been a member of the Espoo City Council from 1980. The Chair of the Espoo City Board he was in 2017-2021.
His professional experience focuses on knowledge creation, lifelong learning, societal innovations, and change management. On these, he has worked for years as the Advisor to the Aalto University Presidents and as the Director of Lifelong Learning Institute Dipoli at the Helsinki University of Technology. He has been a Member of Parliament of Finland 1995-2003. As an MP, his international role included the Presidency of EPTA Council, European Parliamentary Technology Assessment Network.
Mr. Markkula has many influential roles in the EU policy, including the CoR Rapporteur on important opinions such as innovation, digitalization, research policy, industrial renaissance, start-ups, and climate. Recently, he was appointed the CoR Rapporteur on European Missions.
Kitty Fehringer - Programme Manager, Directorate General for Education and Culture
Ms Kitty FEHRINGER (AT) joined the European Commission in 2002. From 2007 to 2019 she worked on mobility and career development of researchers in the Directorate General for Research and Innovation.
Between 2019 and 2021, she contributed to the development of the Single Digital Gateway in the frame of the digitalisation of the single market.
As of 2021 to date, Kitty is Programme Manager in the Directorate General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture. She is in charge of the European Youth portal and forms part of the team implementing the European Year of Youth 2022.
Ms Fehringer has a professional background in Marketing Management following her studies of special education for disabled children at the University of Vienna.
Thomas Matthew - Board member, European Youth Forum
Tom is a board member at the European Youth Forum; he is responsible for the European Youth Capital project and the Forum's statutory meetings, and he leads the Forum's work on digitalisation. He studies Human, Social and Political Science at Cambridge University where he is Co-chair of the largest politics society at the University. He is an international representative of the British Youth Council. Tom is passionate about youth participation in democracy, leadership, and communication.
|Jussi Pullinen - Journalist, Editor at HS.fi, business and politics
Jussi Pullinen is the editor of politics and the economy at Helsingin Sanomat, the leading national newspaper in Finland and a main news outlet in Helsinki region overall. He's published two books (one as co-author) on social media, politics and culture. In 2017, he worked as the visiting professor in journalism at the University of Tampere, Finland.
Mari Vaattovaara - Director of Helsinki Institute of Urban and Regional Studies
Mari Vaattovaara is Professor of Urban Geography at the University of Helsinki and Director of Helsinki Institute of Urban and Regional Studies (Urbaria). She is also the member of the scientific committee in the International Science Council (ISC)
In her research, Vaattovaara has analysed the segregation and competitiveness of cities, housing, immigration and integration questions as well as land use and urban planning and policies. The results of her projects have provided new knowledge for regional, urban, suburban and neighbourhood planning.
Of key importance are close relationships with local stakeholders. Vaattovaara challenges the distinction between theoretical research and practice. She does not see a conflict between the classical academic tradition and the social applicability of research results: nothing is as useful as a good theory to help us understand current phenomenon,” she stresses.
She has been the initiator of Urban Academy, the platform and network that brings together multidisciplinary research, teaching and societal impact in the field of urban studies. It is a partnership of five organizations: Aalto University, University of Helsinki, City of Espoo, City of Helsinki and City of Vantaa. The Mayor of Espoo, Jukka Mäkelä is the chair of the network. Cities of Helsinki Capital Region are funding postdoctoral researcher posts (6 positions/year) in urban studies as well as a professorhip in Urban Economics.
tel. + 32 2 552 08 84
City of Espoo
head of international affairs
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