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Open European Day 2017 Recap

4th Open European Day at Resilient Cities 2017 in Bonn

Bonn - Germany, 3rd May 2017

The 4th Open European Day at the Bonn Resilient Cities conference brought together European cities and key adaptation actors from different organizations to exchange on climate adaptation and urban resilience. Previous years’ editions have been welcomed as inspiring and informative due to their particular emphasis on interactive exchange and discussions. In each case, they hosted around 125 participants and a wide range of cities at various stages of adaptation development, as well as adaptation and climate experts and professionals.

As in previous years, the fourth Open European Day focused on city-to-city exchange on urban adaptation and its format facilitated even more interactive discussion and sharing of experiences. This year’s Open European Day also included interactive workshops around key themes. In each workshop, a city presented a real-life challenge and during the workshop, participants explored solutions to these challenges. These challenges spanned across three themes:


As part of adapting to climate change, cities can transform the structures and systems in place by and for their citizens.

  • Designing or upgrading green spaces and waterways for added environmental and social benefits  
  • Flexible working hours to avoid peak temperatures during heat-waves
  • Investing in climate adaptation, creating jobs and boosting disadvantaged neighborhoods
  • Reshaping infrastructures such as public transport systems or local energy grids 


A combination of high and low-tech solutions, creative technology-based infrastructure and communication solutions, and forward-thinking governance models are needed to tackle the complex challenges arising from climate change.  

  • Apps can help citizens report climate problems and to receive alerts about extreme weather
  • Cooperation between the public and private sector can help steer urban design towards multifunctionality and resilience
  • A creative mix of funding instruments, such as green bonds or crowdfunding, can help finance adaptation
  • Cities find new ways of involving various departments and city services in climate adaptation


Well-adapted cities involve citizens in actively shaping their urban environment.

  • Citizens are consulted as part of urban renovation planning, their ideas integrated into design plans and different options considered collectively  
  • Community groups can bring spontaneous initiatives to municipalities to be heard and supported in evaluating their feasibility and benefits for their community
  • A wide range of different voices, including artists and cultural institutions, can make unique contributions
  • Business initiatives are embraced and included in local development