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Citizen City

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Our ambition


Integrating citizen participation as a real part of smart cities policy at all levels of decision and implementation The target would be a measurable objective of systematic integration of citizen participation from the outset in smart cities projects and policies

Effective take up of smart cities services by citizens. 

  • Usage: by 2020 : 10 million citizens actively using smart cities and e-governance platforms on a regular basis;  by 2025 : 30 million active on a regular basis.

  • Participation: by 2020: 5 millions of participants to on line and offline engagement and codesign processes ; by 2025 : 15 millions of participants.

  • Co-creation: By 2025 :  3,5 millions of co-creators (services, mobile apps, platforms).

Inclusion targets

Within all actions of the AC CF citizen participation and engagement are conceived as strictly connected to social inclusion: the attention is not to generalize on participatory practices and methodologies and to raise the awareness on diversities and inequalities which are featuring urban societies in the EU. From this awareness stems out an approach aimed at fostering inclusive smart cities and communities,  taking the following targets into account:

  • Gender: by 2025 at least 40% of each sex among participants to online -offline engagement and co-design – co creation activities.

  • Ethnicity: by 2025 at least 10% of migrants among actively engaged citizens (baseline: over 504 mln EU population in 2014 and 72,4 mln international migrants estimated in the EU in 2013 for a 14% average share (OECD/UN).

  • Class and poverty: by 2025 at least 12% of engaged citizens residing in urban peripheries and poorest neighbourhoods (baseline: 16,4% poverty rate EU-Eurostat).

  • Age: by 2025 at least 15% of actively engaged citizens from the age group 65+ (baseline: EU population 65+ represents  18,5%  of the total) and child-family friendly approaches crosscutting citizen engagement methodologies.


Our case

Concrete involvement of citizens needs to start form the identification of real needs. Conversely new services can be produced starting from the citizen data.

Goals: Identifying how the use of innovative methods and tools such as Co-design and Co-creation dedicated to participation and engagement meet the needs of citizens.

Citizen needs’ understanding and translating them into policies through co-design and co-creation are a willingness of several stakeholders. First of all policy makers, mainly in cities, but also grassroots organisations and event industry, all of them now wish to base their actions/solutions/products on «citizens needs» and to answer new trends in citizens’ behaviours.

These stakeholders also aim at collecting data on citizens’ behaviours by the feedback that is an outcome of the use of all connected devices and the output of ICT based systems (including smart cards; mobile phones, internet consumption, etc.).

We can find data in several sources:

  • EIP commitments (a selection was initiated for preparing the 10th November meeting)

  • Smart city projects (from the selected EU projects in H2020 SCC call)

  • Cities networks (as Eurocities) work on citizen engagement

  • Previous projects on co-creation and co-design funded in FP7 or other schemes including academic research projects. Partners experts on co-creation methods.

  • Experiences in the industry (provided by ID4CAR industrial cluster)

We thus will compose a group of key persons to support our work, with a basis of 6 representatives:

  • 2 from the Working group in Brussels.

  • 2 from main EIP commitments.

  • 1 from cities or City network.

  • 1 from the industry.

  • Commission representatives.

We will draft a list of names by end of January 2016.

This initiative is closely linked to the other AC Citizen engagement initiatives, especially Initiaitve CITIZEN AND STAKEHOLDERS COMMUNICATION PLATFORMS, as platforms are tools for citizen’s engagement. A close cooperation and agreements on methods, content and articulation of deliverable is foreseen all over the process. 

A coordination web meeting is currently planned, as well as regular exchanges.


Our approach

Deliverable: Identifying how the use of innovative methods and tools such as Co-design and Co-creation called “CoC-CoD” dedicated to participation and engagement meets the needs of citizens. In particular use the feedback by data: use of data for creating new services (Data are linked with inclusiveness and participation because they can be used to shape new services). Engaging cities in testing and implementing co-creation and co-design process and strategies.

The main deliverable will be recommendations to the local authorities and cities on co-creation and co-design implementation strategies, based on best practices and success stories. This deliverable aims at being a decision tool and support for actions by cities, but also emerging from citizens associations and the private sector for improving policies and services. Specific attention will be given to tools dedicated to specific populations for preventing their exclusion from the process (vulnerable citizens, less literate, elderly, youngsters,). Alongside the recommendations “guidebook”, the initiative will set up basis for training schemes for implementing the recommendations for cities.  


Our action

  • Identifying how the use of innovative methods and tools such as Co-design and Co-creation dedicated to participation and engagement really meet the needs of citizens.

  • Gathering knowledge on citizens’ needs evolution and the way smart cities projects take them into account: interviews with various stakeholders from smart cities projects.

  • Evaluation of existing tools by means of a questionnaire (in particular focussing on inclusiveness).

  • Investigate how to access and use data for creating new services.

  • Involving a sample of 10 cities in implementing the co-creation and co-design processes.

  • Linking up with initiative 3 identified platforms for completing the co-creation/co-design processes implementation.


Citizen focus is a Key Horizontal Enabler Action Cluster in the Smart Cities Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP). It is linked to the other 5 Action Clusters.

  • Network: gather knowledge from POLIS, Eurocities, financed SCC H2020 projects and selected SCC experimentations.

  • Relations with other AC clusters and interviews for identifying specific thematic tools and methods of co-creation and co-design.

  • Literature review but only on existing synthesis published in EU projects.

  • Sample group of interested cities for testing the CoC-CoD.


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M 1- Definition of the complementarity with Initiative 3 (platforms): 

Deadline: 31/12/2015.

·M2- The state of the art related co-design and co-creation:

The proposal is to present the state of the art on co-design and co-creation methods.


- Literature review.

- Cooperation with experts.

Result: Webinar. Contents:

- Co-design methods, common approaches.

- Previous experiences/projects.

- Existing results: guidelines, best practices, …

- Implementation in Smart Cities sector.

- Review of the 10 tools presented in the EC hanbook

Deadline: 31/01/2016.

M3- Map of needs:

Citizen focus is a Key Horizontal Enabler Action Cluster in the Smart Cities Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP). It is linked to the other 5 Action Clusters

The proposal is to define the specific needs for each one of the AC and to discuss the different roles between user, participant and co-creator in each area.


- Interviews with AC leaders and Initiative leaders.

- Interviews with Cities Platforms /Networks: EUROCITIES, Covenant of Mayors, Polis

Result: Map of needs by Action Clusters.

Deadline: 31/02/2016.

M4- Evaluation of existing tools

At this stage, several questions can be posed to the existing practices of citizens’ involvement and debated in a workshop/webinar:

- Who is leading the participation?

- Which processes/methods have been used for citizen engagement

  • As user
  • As participant
  • As co-creator

- Which supporting tools have been used?

- Which categories of citizens are targeted?

- Are accompanying measures implemented (training, education)?

- Which monitoring tools and methods are used to assess the impact of consultation/participation? KPIs used to evaluate the tool adoption.

- Are categories of citizens excluded? KPI on inclusion will be developed on the basis of existing methods.

- Other demographic issues.

The objective is to select good practices and success histories.


- We (leaders and EU) evaluate a first tool, to produce an evaluation template.

- We distribute the rest of the tools between the group of key persons.

- Exchange of evaluations for validations.

- Webinar to select Good practices and success histories.

Result: method based on success stories and sustainable approaches, and creation of success KPI, including KPI on the impact on inclusion of the CoC-CoD approaches.

Deadline: 15/04/2016

M5- Testing in 10 interested cities:

After the completion of the draft deliverable: method, tools, training and KPI, these will be tested in voluntary cities to be selected in January 2016, to be selected by a call for interest through Eurocities, POLIS and the SCC commitments, as well as in the pool of SCC H2020 awarded projects.

We will draft a document presenting the aim in January, for testing in April/May 2016 in very focused and selected topics crucial for the success of the CoC-CoD (e.g. inclusion, feedback into policies, …). A wrap up “testing results” seminar will be organized to draft conclusions and produce the final deliverable

Deadline: 31/05/2016.

Final result:

Identifying how the methods and tools dedicated to participation and engagement meet the needs of citizens à publish recommendations for implementation and propose evaluation and indicators of success : “Guidelines for future design, Implementation and monitoring”.

Deadline: June 2016.


Latest news

Citizen City Initiative is working on a Citizen Engagement Guide for city planners and activists. During its break-out session at the EIP-SCC 2016 General Assembly, the Initiative team kicked-off an open call to gather use cases on co-creation, in order to extract from them lessons learned and best practices. The key issues needing to be refined to make it an effective knowledge transfer tool and useful resource for citizens in smart cities were discussed.

The initiative also plans to foster the creation of project proposals on this field and has already selected a bunch of interesting funding opportunities. An examples is the collaboration with Small Giants.


Our webinars

Find all the information about the Citizen Focus webinar on 'Inclusive Smart Cities: co-creation and co-design' here. Leave your questions and comments!

Watch the full webinar by clicking on the banner:




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