On 12 February 2019, the international community of practice Connective Cities invited 19 municipal practitioners from Turkey on a study tour in Berlin. This served as an introduction to the project workshop on ‘Integration of refugees and social cohesion’ with 16 other participants from Germany. The Turkish delegation visited various innovative facilities for the support and integration of refugees in the framework of this cooperation with the programme ‘Municipal know-how for host communities in the Middle East’. The exchange with the local experts there resulted in impulses which were applied during the project workshop in Schöneberg town hall. In combination with the personal experiences of the participants, 8 individual project ideas were developed by the 15 February, to be elaborated upon within the framework of German-Turkish project partnerships.
From the 3rd to 5th of September, Connective Cities organised a Dialogue Event on ‘Climate-Proofing Urban Development’ in the host city Dortmund. The event was the first of Connective Cities' third project phase, which began in April 2019, and brought together nearly 30 municipal practitioners from Ghana, Northern Macedonia, Brazil, Argentina, Kenya, Ukraine, Bahrain and South Africa to discuss the challenges of climate change for cities and to devise potential solutions. Keynote speeches by representatives of the City of Dortmund as well as TU Dortmund University (Germany) and Ejisu Municipal Assembly (Ghana) highlighted central aspects necessary adaptation of urban development to climate change and served as orientation for solution-oriented expert exchanges in order to develop initial project ideas.
On the 7th and 8th of October, Connective Cities hosted a networking event for selected municipal practitioners from its pool of experts at the headquarters of the German Association of Cities in Berlin. The participating municipal actors had the opportunity to look back on past activities with the project and especially the new experts had the chance to get to know the Connective Cities methods first hand. In cooperation, ten municipal practitioners from Germany and three from Ternopil (Ukraine), Gostivar (Northern Macedonia) and Bjeljina (Bosnia and Herzegovina) produced first project outlines and were also able to draw inspiration for their own projects.
Almost 40 municipal practitioners from 13 cities in Germany, Kosovo, Ecuador, Jordan, Ethiopia, Albania, Sri Lanka, Somalia and Costa Rica were invited by Connective Cities to the host city of Hamburg from the 3rd to 5th of December to take part in their dialogue event on the topic of ‘Plastic waste - the contribution of municipal waste management to solving the problem’. With input from Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rüdiger Siechau of the municipal waste company Stadtreinigung Hamburg and Anja Schwetje of the German Environmental Agency, the event focused on three topics: sustainable separated household waste collection systems; sustainable use of plastics; and avoiding plastic packaging. A number of central challenges were identified and the solutions discussed were then transformed into project ideas with concrete action plans.