The role of Living Labs
Showcase interventions for sustainable and inclusive development, building on the New Urban Agenda and the Paris Agreement.
Linking key sectors and actors is a vital step towards an integrated approach that helps decarbonizing urban systems and delivers liveable and accessible cities for all.
Testing innovative solutions in urban living labs can be a key steppingstone, transferring these learnings into scaled-up public or private sector actions is then a vital next step towards transformative change.
The Living Lab Co-development Approach
The basic concept of the Living Lab approach is fairly simple, the core component of the approach is the co-development of solutions among partners from the public and private sector, civil society and academia. The basics on the concepts and approach are summarised in a short paper.
The co-development of at the Urban Living Lab Center focuses on integrating research and innovation along five pillars:
Boost capabilities, provide tools to plan, assess and implement
Foster the take-up by inspiring through peer-to-peer exchange
Strengthen collaboration by initiating partnerships
Create reference models by implementing demonstration actions
Scale-up, replication and transfer
Creating a Safe System for Decarbonised, Sustainable Cities
A Safe System approach moves away from the perspective that individuals are at fault when choosing carbon intense energy and mobility solutions and focuses more on the systemic change that is needed to enable access for all to low-carbon, sustainable infrastructures and services.
Moving to a Safe System approach for sustainable, decarbonised cities can build on years of experiences from the road safety realm, beginning from the first adoption of “vision zero” in Sweden in 1997 which has revolutionised the approach to improving road safety. There are now plenty of technological and operational options readily available which can drastically reduce CO2 emissions and improve the quality of life in cities. Part of this approach is the provision of more sustainable choices to users and clear signals of preference—for example, through pricing or regulation.
To adopt a Safe System approach, improved capacities and a better understanding of the needs and opportunities for key players in the sector is important, including: local and national authorities, industry; service providers and infrastructure developers. These are essential building blocks for the transition to sustainable urban development.