The Urban ReLeaf project kicks off in January with the mission to advance citizen-powered science to be a central resource for inclusive urban green planning and policy in support of the European Green Deal and SDG 11.7 target.

Urban ReLeaf is a new Horizon Europe project, coordinated by IIASA’s NoDES research programme, continuing the legacy of past successful Citizen Observatory projects, such as LandSense and WeObserve

The project involves partners from other successful H2020 Citizen Observatory projects as well as six cities (Athens, Cascais, Dundee, Mannheim, Riga, and Utrecht) that are willing to embrace new data streams for urban greening planning and policy making and to fully engage with citizens including marginalized and vulnerable groups. Urban ReLeaf is further supported by a large cities’ network and technology partners with strong links to Copernicus and the Group on Earth Observations (GEO).

During the Kick-off workshop, partners from nine European countries will discuss and work towards the project’s ambitious plan to 

  • Assess current urban greening policy processes within six European cities and co-create solutions that use citizen observations to complement existing data ecosystems and decision-making; 
  • Support the validation and long-term inclusion of active and passive data from citizens for urban environmental monitoring within authoritative data streams, including GEOSS & Copernicus; 
  • Mobilize and empower communities through widespread participation in issues of public interest surrounding urban green infrastructure; 
  • Develop a community of practice around topics related to the use of citizen observations for urban planning to foster knowledge exchange and develop capacities across multiple sectors;  
  • Produce flexible and innovative governance solutions to help scale-out inclusive urban green transitions in support of the European Green Deal and UN Sustainable Development Goals; and 
  • Promote recognition, adoption and trust of citizen observations and other novel data ecosystems for environmental monitoring to trigger innovation within public institutions. 
graph © Urban ReLeaf

“We are excited to be working with urban authorities and opening a new chapter for citizen participation and the uptake of citizen’s observations. With a mission-led approach, Urban ReLeaf builds new partnerships and processes where citizens collaborate alongside authorities to share knowledge and drive targeted and evidence-based decision making. Our hope is to support just transitions for communities to address the changing climate of urban environments and greenspace planning in a more inclusive way“, say Inian Moorthy and Gerid Hager from NoDES, who are together coordinating the Urban ReLeaf project.

graph © European Commission

Urban ReLeaf is a Horizon Europe Innovation Action under the Topic: CL6-2022-Governance-01-08 - Uptake and validation of citizen observations to complement authoritative measurement within the urban environment and boost related citizen engagement. 

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