Research group at imec & Vrije Universiteit Brussel


Urban Planning and design ready for 2030

Project Description

UP2030 aims to guide cities through the socio-technical transitions required to meet their climate neutrality ambitions. It will do so by enabling a quantum leap from a ´business as usual´, project-by-project decarbonisation approach to a vision-driven, strategy-based approach that is anchored on sound projects and renewed policy development. The approach uses urban planning and design as a vehicle to create better connected, more compact, net-zero neighbourhoods in the city pilots – i.e. neighbourhoods that promote liveability and, through designing with intent, promote mitigation action.

The role of SMIT

SMIT’s role in the project is to develop, test and validate citizen engagement state-of-the-art methods and digital tools,  to support better decision-making on spatial solutions. We will investigate how place identity towards liveable communities (sense of place, but also sense of nature) is formed, and evaluate how this is affected by interventions of participatory urban planning initiatives and citizen science campaigns. The project will also assess how such initiatives influence the citizens’ attitude and behaviour: are they taking more pro-environmental/neutrality actions at the project end, and are they willing to help improve the liveability of their neighbourhood – and is this linked with their place identity?