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Open AccessArticle

Cities4ZERO: Overcoming Carbon Lock-in in Municipalities through Smart Urban Transformation Processes

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TECNALIA, Basque Research and Technology Alliance (BRTA), Building Technologies Unit. Parque Tecnológico de Vizcaya. Geldo street, Edif.700 - 48160 Derio, Spain
2
University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), ENEDI Research Group. Alda. Urquijo s/n, 48013 Bilbao, Spain
3
Institute of Baltic Studies, research think-tank, Lai 30, 51005 Tartu, Estonia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(9), 3590; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12093590
Received: 31 March 2020 / Revised: 21 April 2020 / Accepted: 22 April 2020 / Published: 28 April 2020
How can local authorities effectively address the decarbonization of urban environments in the long run? How would their interests and expertise be aligned into an integrated approach towards decarbonization? This paper delves into how strategic processes can help to integrate diverse disciplines and stakeholders when facing urban decarbonization and presents Cities4ZERO, a step-by-step methodology for local authorities, able to guide them through the process of developing the most appropriate plans and projects for an effective urban transition; all from an integrated, participatory and cross-cutting planning approach. For the development of the Cities4ZERO methodology, plans, projects, and strategic processes from five European cities that are part of the Smart Cities and Communities European Commission program have been monitored for 4 years, in close collaboration with local authorities, analyzing ad-hoc local strategic approaches to determine key success factors and barriers to be considered from their transitioning experiences. The study indicates that an iterative strategic approach and a project-oriented vision, combined with a stable institutional commitment, are opening a window of opportunity for cities to achieve effective decarbonization. View Full-Text
Keywords: decarbonization; urban transformation; cities; energy transition; strategic planning; Smart cities; Smart zero carbon city decarbonization; urban transformation; cities; energy transition; strategic planning; Smart cities; Smart zero carbon city
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Urrutia-Azcona, K.; Tatar, M.; Molina-Costa, P.; Flores-Abascal, I. Cities4ZERO: Overcoming Carbon Lock-in in Municipalities through Smart Urban Transformation Processes. Sustainability 2020, 12, 3590.

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