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Annual Eurocities Conference Held by Espoo Focuses on Cities’ Climate Leadership

At the three-day conference that brings the management of European cities together, the topics discussed include the inclusion of young people, co-creation and cities’ leadership in the work against climate change. The theme of the annual conference, An Era of New Beginnings, consists of three parts, Dream, Act and Lead, through which these topics are studied. The conference attendees include city leadership from Oslo, Rotterdam, Helsinki, Brussels, Stockholm and Munich, among other cities.

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On Friday, one of the keynote speakers will be Executive Vice-President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans , who will introduce the discussion on climate-neutral cities.

“Cities play a key role in the progress towards the EU’s climate goals and building a sustainable future. The annual conference also strengthens the dialogue between cities and the European Commission. However, achieving the goals will be impossible if cities cannot extensively involve operators from all sectors of society. Co-creation and cooperation between the public and private sector are some of the overarching themes of the conference, in addition to climate leadership and young people’s inclusion,” says Milla Ovaska , Head of International Affairs at the City of Espoo.

As a part of the conference and the European Year of Youth, Espoo is organising the Future Mentors programme in which young people living in European cities engage in dialogue with the policymakers of their cities. This is called reverse mentoring.

“We wanted to provide young people with an opportunity to voice their dreams, wishes and concerns about the future of their home city. The decisions that we are making now will have long-term influence, and young people will be the ones living in the future we create. We would like the programme to encourage policymakers to engage in dialogue and give space to new ways of thinking,” says Marianne Julkunen , Partnership Coordinator.

Eurocities Awards to best practices of resident inclusion

On the evening of Thursday 9 June, the conference programme includes the Eurocities Awards ceremony , which showcases the member cities’ projects that have succeeded best in involving their residents and influencing their quality of life. This year’s awards will be given in three categories: ‘Future generations transforming the cities,’ ‘Skills and competences for the future’ and ‘Scalable solutions for positive climate impact.’ The winners will be selected by a five-person jury.

Representatives of the media are cordially invited to attend the annual Eurocities conference on-site at Espoo, Finland. The conference is also available virtually on its website .

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The conference has been created in collaboration with various organisations, all relevant to building future-proof cities and societies. The main partners are Aalto University and VTT. You can find all partners at: eurocities2022.eu/partners .

Eurocities is the key network of European cities for Espoo. Eurocities supervises interests at the level of the EU, generates information about the EU’s funding application rounds and EU legislation, and functions as a peer learning platform for its member cities.

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