The Policy Transfer Platform is linked with other institutions, networks and urban awards supporting its development. On this page, you can browse and learn more about our partner network.
- The Circles Project / University of Western Sydney
- UCLG Learning
- UCLG Urban Innovation Community
- Connective Cities
- Seoul Solution
We are a research association, collaborating across a number of universities and international organizations to develop and apply the Circles approach.
The Circles Project is convened by the Institute for Culture and Society at the University of Western Sydney, Australia. It is supported in particular by the Senate Department of Urban Development and the Environment (Berlin) and Metropolis, the World Association of Major Metropolises (Barcelona and Paris). But its base is much broader. It is a collaborative network of colleagues and associates who have been working together in various capacities since 2007 to contribute practically and theoretically to a more sustainable planet.
Circles of Sustainability is a method, part of the larger Circles of Social Life approach, developed through collaboration between Metropolis, the UN Global Compact Cities Programme, and other organizations such as the International Real Estate Federation (FABCI), the Cultural Development Network, and World Vision.
The method is used for assessing sustainability and for managing projects for socially sustainable outcomes. It is intended to handle seemingly intractable problems. We live in a world with increasing pressures of global climate change, globalization, urbanization, and intensifying social change. In response, we need more sophisticated and subtle approaches for acting upon sustainability issues. It seems that the more complex the problem, the less that contemporary approaches are useful. ‘Sustainability’ is in danger of becoming an empty phrase. Circles of Sustainability provides a possible way out of these limitations.
Cities and local and regional governments have the need for practical solutions to fulfill the citizen’s demand. In this regards, sub-national governments are strong partners and supporters regardless of their development stage. Therefore, learning cannot be conducted alone but has to be part of partnerships with other authorities, academies, associations, international organizations and even private actors.
Built on the challenges and positive experiences accumulated by our members and partners, the UCLG learning agenda offers a platform where new ideas and methodologies can be tested, and where learning themes are developed, addressing the concrete interest of our members. It will serve to share and disseminate the experiences and knowledge for the capacity building which finally leads to the cooperation between our members and partners.
The Urban Innovation Community was established in June 2014 at the United Cities and Local Governments Executive Bureau meeting in Liverpool, England. The aim of the Community is to promote innovation and further enhance the learning agenda of UCLG.
Urban innovation includes combatting the social, economic, environmental and governance challenges facing cities today; all with the intention of improving the quality of life for a cities’ citizens.
UCLG, in conjunction with Metropolis and the City of Guangzhou, host the Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation biennially.
The Urban Innovation Community enhances the success of the Guangzhou Award by ensuring the continuity of the successful initiatives of the Award’s finalists. It also serves to increase international exchanges and cooperation in urban innovation; facilitate relevant research and development, provide suggestions for policy and decision-making and ensure the future work of UCLG.
Connective Cities is a joint venture between the Association of German Cities (Deutscher Städtetag), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Service Agency Communities in One World (a division of Engagement Global). This International Community of Practice for Sustainable Urban Development is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
Connective Cities provides demand-based services designed to improve cooperation among urban practitioners at global level. The platform enhances the sharing of good practice examples, expert knowledge and solution-oriented peer-to-peer consulting, and creates opportunities for partnerships among its stakeholders.
Connective Cities addresses questions of how to achieve sustainable development through innovative strategies and practices. It highlights good practice examples in the overarching fields of good urban governance, integrated urban development and support of local economic development strategies. Connective Cities creates a base for knowledge sharing and the development of transformative solutions in local contexts that are customised to local requirements for sustainable urban development.
By conducting dialogue events, Connective Cities facilitates exchange among urban practitioners on relevant themes, and functions as a platform for a networking strategy. To implement the strategy Connective Cities also organises trainings, study tours, project workshops and virtual discussion forums. Working within Connective Cities can result in new forms of cooperation among the actors involved. The platform also aims to facilitate the initiation of joint projects among urban stakeholders from various local settings.
Seoul Solution is a think tank dedicated to promoting examples of successful urban development policies and projects conducted by the Seoul Metropolitan Government.
The organisation gathers case studies that form good practice and is tasked with disseminating Seoul’s experience and know-how to interested citizens and urban practitioners in Seoul and to other cities worldwide. In addition, Seoul Solution gives advice and tools to cities that are rapidly growing on how to achieve urban development in a more sustainable way. Seoul Solution is co-managed by the Global Urban Partnership Division of the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the Seoul Institute.
The Metropolis Awards are bestowed every three years, along with each edition of the Metropolis World Congress. The 6th edition of the Metropolis Awards will be awarded in 2017.
They recognize outstanding urban development experiences from Metropolis member cities related to improving their citizens' quality of life, preferably in the areas of environment, housing, public transport, safety and economic, social and cultural development. Special consideration is given to cases with positive impact on women, young people and people with some form of disability.
A first, a second and a third prize are awarded to the applications with the best evaluations from the jury. In addition, up to three honourable mentions are awarded.
A combined project between UCLG, Metropolis and the city of Guangzhou, the Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation aims to recognise and award city initiatives that are innovative in improving the livelihoods of their citizens.
The Award is presented biennially and encourages innovation in public policy, projects, business models and practices. The first Award was was held in 2012 and received 255 entries from 153 cities, in 56 countries across six continents.
Five winning cities are selected and in 2012 they included: Kocaeli (Turkey), Lilongwe (Malawi), Seoul (South Korea), Vancouver (Canada) and Vienna (Austria).
The fields for submission include Public Services, Organization and Administration, Partnership and Citizen Involvement, Smart City and Sustainable City.
The second Award was even more successful with 259 initiatives submitted from 177 cities worldwide. This cycles’ winners were Antioquia (Colombia), Bristol (U.K.), Christchurch (New Zealand), Dakar (Senegal) and Hangzhou (China).
An extra three winning categories were also added in 2014 to promote public participation in the Guangzhou Award. These categories are: an online-popular city, a media-popular city and the preferred city by the attendees of the Conference on Learning from Urban Innovation.
- innovation: innovation in the planning and implementation of activities or practices by a local authority
- participation: activities or practices of a local authority which are successful in actively promoting citizen participation
- cooperation: awarding cooperation efforts undertaken by a local authority together with partner organisations
The EUROCITIES awards have been running since 2006. Past examples of winning projects include a project encouraging citizens to become successful community leaders in Bristol; a cultural network designed to improve quality of life for elderly citizens in Espoo; and the renewal of an old industrial island in Bydgoszcz to become a centre of culture, leisure and entrepreneurship.
Many of these projects have gone on to achieve further success at national and European level.
Each shortlisted award entry is required to submit a short video of its project. You can browse the shortlisted entries and winners using the awards menu on the EUROCITIES website: www.eurocities.eu
The Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award is a travelling prize presented to initiatives within a specific city that utilise partnerships to improve the quality of life and the quality of the urban environment.
The winners are selected by an independent jury following an open call for applications. The Alfred Herrhausen Society, which is the international forum of Deutsche Bank and initiator of the long-standing Urban Age Programme at the London School of Economics and Political Science, created the award to encourage people to take responsibility for their cities and form new alliances.
Since 2007, the award, worth USD 100,000, has been presented to bottom-up community initiatives based in Mumbai, São Paulo, Istanbul, Mexico City, Cape Town, Rio de Janeiro and most recently in New Delhi.
In 2014 there were 135 applications from the Delhi region, reflecting the vibrancy and creativity of Delhi’s citizens in dealing with the social and urban challenges facing their city.
Many projects highlight the cooperation between the various stakeholders such as social activists, community groups, foundations, architects and designers, local authorities, universities, and governmental organisations. The submissions represent a diverse range of projects. The initiatives fall into various categories including education, culture, environment, sanitation, public space, transport and recycling.