On January 16, 2024, the Smart Communities Network, a coalition of associations representing cities and municipalities in EU member states, convened its first online meeting. This meeting marked the beginning of a collaborative journey towards digital transformation and community development.
The Network welcomed its initial ten associations selected from Belgium (Brussels and Wallonia), the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Spain, France, Romania, Italy and Germany.
During the meeting, the European Commission outlined the purpose of this Smart Communities Network. It is part of the first phase of the Local Digital Twins toolbox project, which aims to integrate local communities into the EU’s digital transition efforts, recognising the essential role of municipalities in this digital era.
The Open & Agile Smart Cities Network, leading the set-up of the network, introduced the partners involved in the network, to help raise awareness about digitalisation in the EU.
Serendipity, the partner leading the work on dissemination and training events, provided insights into the network’s mission. Their plan involves each association hosting two sessions in their respective countries. These sessions will educate cities and municipalities about crucial EU digital topics, and immerse them in practical digital tools, services, and projects, equipping them to embark on their digital transformation journeys.
In the months to come, network members will meet four times between June 2024 and September 2025. These sessions will serve as platforms for knowledge-sharing, allowing members to exchange valuable insights on their strategies for the two national digitalisation sessions. Network members will collaborate closely with project partners to effectively organise the dissemination and training sessions. They will actively seek new members from EU countries not yet included in the network. Members of the Network will sign a Memorandum of Understanding, formalising their cooperation with the European Commission
With strong commitment and a lot of expertise, this Smart Communities Network will bring meaningful change to cities and local communities in the EU in the digital age.
Make a note of Monday, June 3, 2024, as the next online meet-up for network members. It’s an opportunity not to be missed.
If you have any questions about the network, please contact Virginie Verstraete at virginie(at)oascities.org