City of Espoo and WSP Finland : development of a co-creation model
23 march 2022 | Location: Espoo
Smart Cities Citizen Engagement Digitalisation Positive Energy Districts

The City of Espoo is working with consulting firm WSP Finland to build a co-creation model that will support forming sustainable and smart urban areas in Espoo. A co-creation model refers to an operating model where various operators brainstorm, develop and implement regional goals together. The model is a part of the Horizon 2020 SPARCS project funded by the EU.

In the co-creation model, it will be proposed how various sustainable and smart urban areas can be developed in co-operation between the city organization, companies, educational institutions, research institutes, other organizations and associations, and citizens. The model will be built using co-creation methods: starting with the definition of shared objectives and by promoting open communications. The model will focus on the themes of energy, mobility and land use development, in particular, which have a significant impact on the City of Espoo’s goals of becoming carbon-neutral by 2030. The model will also support the development of partnership work on sustainable development.

“Cities such as ours cannot respond to the sustainability challenge on our own, since we also need extensive co-operation and residents’ participation. The new co-operation models for urban development are only now being formed, and the co-creation model is an excellent example of this. It is wonderful to be able to work on this model with WSP’s support and together with the stakeholders. Developing the model through extensive co-operation has attracted great interest, and we are looking forward to presenting the results to everyone interested,” says Elina Wanne, Project Manager for SPARCS at the City of Espoo.

Result: virtual toolkit for developing sustainable and smart urban areas

The City of Espoo’s goal is to develop operating models to take smart city solutions into consideration early on during a city district’s planning phase. The process will result in a virtual toolkit for supporting the development of sustainable and smart urban areas. At the same time, the land use and urban development process also are being described from the perspective of inclusion: who is able to influence matters, how, at which stage, and at which level, e.g. how a resident can influence the planning of a building or a park.

“We are very happy for the opportunity to do this fascinating and socially impactful R&D work with the City of Espoo and other partners. With the model that will be formed, it is possible to boldly take a step towards smoother and increasingly sustainable processes for building smart cities,” says Terhi Tikkanen-Lindström, WSP Finland’s Director of Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility who is also the project manager for the ongoing work.

The results of the development work on the co-creation model will be presented and shared in late 2022.