On 27 May 2017, ALDA join forces with Science Po Paris, the City of Thessaloniki, the Institut Français de Thessaloniki, SOS Malta and the consortia LADDER and RE.CRI.RE to organise the international seminar “Urbanism: resilience, welcome and urban innovation” in Thessaloniki. The event is part of a set of raising awareness events on development education promoted by the Migration Path of the LADDER.
European cities face new challenges. Dealing with climate change or the refugees crisis are unheard engagements for local communities, which are obliged to develop innovative approaches at the same time. Emergencies require in fact quick actions and an inclination to innovate; while structural changes impose a long term view and complex negotiations. The seminar questioned the effort of cities to establishing coherent strategies. Cities have to combine some much needed urban transformations with a strategic approach. In particular, they have to prepare resilient answers to climate change, and sustain specific actions to welcome new arrivals and people in transit. In such a context, transformative and cooperative models of urban change acquire a greater importance, even more so when cities are struggling with the consequence of austerity.
The seminar was opened by a first panel on “EU and local policies for refuges: cities on the forefront”. Within this, fruitful contributions from the Coordinator of the Migration Path of LADDER, Ms Lorna Muscat (SOS Malta) and the LADDER Project Manager for Greece, Ms Theodora Avgolidou (EGTC Amphictyony) were brought in as inputs for discussion. The first panel was followed by concrete experiences of policy makers at the local level such as the Deputy Mayor of the City of Thessaloniki and of the City of Rome. Finally, the last session of the seminar “Actions and development programme in Thessaloniki” proposed new solutions and actions via exchanges at transnational level to the local Greek context.