Climate Smart Cities

Urban Design Thinking Workshops in Kochi, Coimbatore and Bhubaneshwar

Series I

The first Urban Lab has been the initial workshop of the Urban Design Thinking Series which took place in Kochi, Coimbatore and Bhubaneswar in 2019. The main goal of the first Urban Lab has been to initiate a discussion of the topic among different stakeholders and the project team, to gain insights on their views and perspectives on certain questions, and their awareness and knowledge regarding specific challenges. For the project team, it was also crucial to develop an understanding of the local situation, which have been concluded from the combination of their personal research experiences and desktop research and the practical experiences and specific local – and sectoral – knowledge of different stakeholders. By this, the participants should help the project team to identify specific challenges and the possible scope of work as well as the project area and scale.

The second Urban Lab will take place by the end of the first quarter of 2020. It will be conducted as a tow-day workshop session to get deeper insights of the challenges, to define specific local needs, and to ideate and prototype first ideas. A first draft of a business model will be the tangible result of the next Urban Lab.

The project team will elaborate the results and prepare a pre-feasibility study on one smart measure. To strengthen the local perspective, furtherstakeholder dialogues and a third Urban Lab will elaborate on specific aspects and questions that might occur during the process. As a result, the pre-study will pave the way for the implementation phase of at least one smart measure until the end of 2021.

Series II

The project Climate Smart Cities (CSC) is coordinated by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and jointly implemented with Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin), Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik (DIFU), and National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA). The objective of the project is to integrate and anchor climate friendly measures to the planning of cities and to disseminate the experiences of innovative co-creative planning formats.  

CSC understands that smartness at the urban level has been mostly defined in the local and national governments. Here, climate issues should not be missing and put at first for future planning.  Through the understanding of the daily life of people in each city we can find new perspectives, uses of spaces and new aspirations. The people’s perspective is a leverage for a better understanding of what the symptoms and problems of the cities are. It is about solving the problem before it becomes a big issue for the liveability of cities and the urban ecosystem.  

The idea of the second Urban Design Thinking Workshop is to put the needs of local people and stakeholders at the centre of thinking and create intense experiences of peer learning and knowledge exchange between the interdisciplinary participants. The Design Thinking method aims at imagining climate sensitive urban design from a user perspective.  

Through group work, field visits, expert talks and design pitches, participants of the workshop can collect ideas that will create leverage for better quality of live. The outcome will be used to formulate specific pre-feasibility studies for the selected challenges identified by the cities.