27 May 2021

National Recovery & Resilience Plans – What is at stake for local and regional authorities?

The last event of the URBAN Intergroup, which took place on May 21st, was dedicated to the National Recovery & Resilience Plans. In his introductory remarks, Jan Olbrycht, President of the URBAN Intergroup, underlined that the idea of this meeting was to discuss what is at stake for local and regional authorities in the preparation and implementation of those plans.


Anna Lisa Boni, Secretary General of EUROCITIES, presented an idea of having a structural dialogue with local and regional authorities and the European Commission especially in the monitoring face of the Recovery and Resilience Instrument. This dialogue would allow to check how investments go in line with EU priorities, partnership and subsidiarity principles. Moreover, in the context of mid-term review of NRR Plans, an idea to establish a city driven pan European project with strong added value was mentioned.



Fréderic Vallier, Secretary General of CEMR, welcomed the idea of having a structured dialogue. He pointed out that national recovery will be efficient if local and regional authorities are involved in the design and the implementation of recovery plans. He presented as well the outcome of a join study made with the Committee of the Regions which shows that consultation process was not organised correctly in all Member States and the involvement of local and regional governments was sufficient.


Eleni Marianou, Secretary General of CPMR, called as well to associate representatives of local and regional authorities to the ongoing structural dialogue between the Commission and the European Parliament. She pointed out that the need of complementarity between different instruments and funds willing to boost investment and recovery. The lack of strategic articulation between the investments to be founded via the RRF and cohesion policy funds 21-27 could jeopardize the capacity for regional authorities to best programme cohesion policy and contribute to investment priorities.


9 April 2021

How cities are using cutting-edge technologies to lead their green, digital and socially responsible recovery

The last on-line event of the URBAN Intergroup on March 26th was dedicated to the presentation of the Intelligent City Challenge (ICC) by the European Commission.


Jan Olbrycht, President of the URBAN Intergroup, who opened the event, underlined that the digital world became a part of our daily life, because of the current pandemic situation.. He stressed that we will witness in the future how cities adapt to new challenges and new ways of functioning. Valentina Superti, Director at the European Commission’s DG for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, presented the Intelligent Cities Challenge journey in her introduction speech. The aim of this initiative is to speed up the digital and green transformation and resilience of the local economy with strategic policy interventions.


The Strategic Policy Forum on Digital Transformation, the first phase of the project, ended up with the Digital Cities Challenge of 40 cities. Currently, the project in its second phase supports community of 136 smaller European and international cities from 21 countries using cutting-edge technologies to lead their green, digital and socially responsible recovery. The Intelligent City Challenge (ICC) is not only EU-focused as 11 non-EU cities are part of it.

The ICC focuses on 5 thematic priorities, which are in line with the world’s biggest challenges and the key policy priorities of the Commission: Green economy and Local Green Deals; Green and Digital transition in Tourism; Citizen engagement
and digitisation of public administration; Supply chains, logistics and the economics of mobility; Upskilling and Reskilling. (more…)

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