SOfiaGREEN launched a new project for sustainable mobility in schools
Sofia is among the 24 local partners who were chosen by the SHARED GREEN DEAL consortium to work locally across six different European Green Deal topics: clean energy, circular economy, preserving biodiversity, sustainable mobility, efficient renovations and sustainable food.
The application of SOfiaGREEN was selected among 349 applications for all 6 steams.
The partners represent local organizations or local governments from all over Europe and have the opportunity to contribute to the local implementation of the Green Deal priorities, create and strengthen relationships with their community and local institutions. This is possible with funding from the Horizon 2020 program of the European Union.
Kinga Kovacs, coordinator at Energy Cities and responsible for the recruitment process, says: “Each of the 24 local partners brings a unique local approach to making Europe more sustainable and we are excited to work closer with them. These are organizations showcasing a strong commitment to the principles of the European Green Deal and in the coming years we will collaborate with them to share the knowledge and experience gained through our joint work on SHARED GREEN DEAL."
SHARED GREEN DEAL partners will exploit their expertise in the Humanities and Social Science to support each local social experiment, running for one year.
SOfiaGREEN will work with 3 schools that will be partners in the activities of the project "Sustainable mobility in schools":
1. 1st Secondary School “Pencho Slaveykov”
2. 6th Primary School "Graf Ignatiev"
3. 35th school for foreign languages "Dobri Voynikov"
With this proejct SOfiaGREEN plans to build on the achievements of the projects "Buses to schools in Sofia Municipality" and "Walk to school", by continuing to work on the topic of the sustainable commuting to school, researching children’s current habits and the possibilities of providing transportation alternatives for students in the city.
SHARED GREEN DEAL’s core goal is to stimulate shared actions on Green Deal initiatives across Europe, by providing Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) tools to support the implementation of 8 EU Green Deal policy areas, at the local and regional level.
Funded by the Horizon 2020 programme of the European Union, SHARED GREEN DEAL will deliver changes in societal practices and in the behaviour of individuals, communities, and public and private organisations.
You can find more about the SHARED GREEN DEAL and the "Sustainable Mobility" steam here: https://sharedgreendeal.eu/news/24-local-partners-join-shared-green-deal
Harnessing the potential of new digital technologies enables communities to work together to achieve clean air for all. Newly launched innovation initiative COMPAIR, led by Digitaal Vlaanderen, empowers people to become citizen scientists helping them explore what they can do personally to improve air quality and influence urban decision making.
In the beginning of this month the eyes of the world have been centered on Glasgow and the coming together of world leaders to set forth new plans to tackle climate change. Whilst the new targets and measures coming out of COP26 are laudable, it will take more than a gathering of politicians to limit global warming as temperatures rise, crops fail and natural disasters strike. Everyday people from doctors and nurses to teachers, lawyers, researchers, office workers, small business owners, students and the unemployed will also have to band together and help and lead the fight against climate change.
COMPAIR (Community Observation Measurement & Participation in AIR science), a new initiative launched this November, aims to do exactly that. The project will support citizens across Europe, including those with no science background, to use digital sensors to collect local climate data and help them analyse it to co-create new climate friendly behaviours and policies that address sustainability both at home and across the continent.
“The idea behind citizen science is to harness the power of collaborative volunteer research to explore or collect data sets that could not be collected by professional researchers alone” explained Lieven Raes, COMPAIR Project Coordinator from Digital Vlaanderen, at the project launch meeting in Ghent. “Together communities can build nuanced data sets at the micro-local level that will help everyone to understand detailed changes in air quality and hwillow community actions affect it.”
Starting in the cities of Athens, Berlin, Sofia, Plovdiv and the region of Flanders, COMPAIR empower people to design and run air quality experiments around local issues. Easy to use air sensors, both fixed and mobile, will help them capture high quality data that can be used by themselves and by city administrations for research and policy making. New technologies including digital twins and virtual reality apps will make the data visible, understandable and actionable by the citizen on a personal level. This combination of citizen generated data with new technologies will help ensure people can react in real-time to air quality issues, whilst contributing to more evidence-based and sustainable urban policy.
Susie Ruston McAleer, communications lead for COMPAIR, said “it’s critical that climate actions and policy are meaningful and connected to people's lives in their community. They know better than anyone what the problems are in their neighbourhoods, so are best placed to help find solutions to local issues. We want to show people that science and technology can be accessible and fun and that everyone has the capacity to improve the quality of their environment. Every action, no matter how small, scales up to make a big difference to our cities, countries and our planet”.
Sofia Development Association through the Sofia Green team is part of the Consortium of 15 organisations from 6 different European countries, including the European Citizen Science Association (ECSA), part of the COMPAIR project that brings together the advanced technical, research and engagement skills needed to improve the quality of citizen science outputs and mainstream it as a valuable resource for urban decision making.
Caption: COMPAIR Pan-European Project Team. Photo courtesy of www.wecompair.eu
COMPAIR is open to anyone interested in improving air quality to help mitigate climate change. Selected participants in the pilot cities - Athens, Berlin, Sofia, Plovdiv and the region of Flanders - get a free digital sensor, citizen science guidance and an online dashboard to visualise their activity. Register your interest at www.wecompair.eu
Additional Information about the Project
COMPAIR is an Innovation project which has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 101036563.
COMPAIR will run for 3 years, starting in November 2021, working with local authorities and citizens to run citizen science experiments to supplement gaps in official air quality data to (a) co-create more effective social actions and (b) influence city policy. Together these actions will contribute towards healthier and greener cities for all.
Consisting of 15 organisations from 6 different European countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, United Kingdom, and The Netherlands, the initiative is led by Digitaal Vlaanderen.
COMPAIR will explore how citizen science, if well organized, can contribute to the many elements needed to realize efficient and effective environmental change, such as the availability of reliable data; personal and societal involvement and awareness; open and participation.
Open innovation competition - GEMSS
Join an open innovation competition on December 17, 2020 from 10:00 to 18:00 and become part of solving the problems of our city! (link to the Facebook event:
GEMSS project partners invite all willing to participate in an open innovation competition and help to generate ideas for solving parking problems in Lyulin district area. The goal is to use the created solutions afterwards and apply them also in other districts of Sofia.
The competition will take place online on the ZOOM platform. A data set with all the data collected under the project will be provided to the participants and they will receive mentoring support from the project partners.
The best ideas will be awarded:
• First prize: drone for amateurs
• TOP 3 finalists will receive passes for public transport in Sofia.
• Branded gift sets will be provided to all the participants.
More information about the assignment can be found here.
Let's find innovative solutions to the parking problems in Sofia together!
Sign up to participate by filling out the registration form:
Sofia Green project is a partner in the GEMSS project (GEo-Modeling for Integrated Mobility Solutions in Sofia) under the EIT Urban Mobility program, together with Cleantech Bulgaria, Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski ”and Center for Urban Mobility.
The project will examine the current state of pre-identified areas with heavy traffic - streets, intersections, street parking, through an innovative approach to mapping urban units with high resolution. GEo-Modelling for Integrated Mobility Solutions in Sofia (GEMSS) aims at developing innovative solutions to tackle the problem with excessive traffic load and on-street parking in particular heavily motorized areas within the city of Sofia.
The activities include mapping of areas with heavy traffic and accumulation of parked cars. The collected data will be processed in GIS format and summarized through localization analysis and modeling, serving as a decision-making tool to improve public transport, including the development of intermodal hubs, buffer parking lots and transport to key points (Park and Ride stations), as well as promoting alternatives to road transport that reduce the load on the streets from parked cars, reduce the use of private cars, while increasing the space used for living rather than for moving.
Based on the analysis, the main challenge will be formulated, for the solution of which an open innovation approach will be applied. The aim is to attract the innovation capacity of local start-ups, universities and research and development (R&D) organizations. They will be invited to present solutions with potential for pilot testing in Sofia. The applicability of the best solutions will be analyzed in advance and thus the most effective method of pilot testing and potential application in 2021 will be outlined.
Sofia is the fastest growing city in Bulgaria, where the private car remains the preferred mode of transportation, which leads to heavily congested intersections and the accumulation of cars parked on the streets. In addition, there is a lack of infrastructure to meet the growing needs of the city. Those are the problems that the GEMSS project addresses. Its activities are directly aimed at 28.8% of citizens (about 350 thousand people) who use cars on a daily basis according to the Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan of 2019.
The introduction of data-based solutions will reduce travel time to the workplace, reduce driving stress, reduce road infrastructure congestion and greenhouse gas emissions from road traffic, and thus improve the urban landscape and quality of life in Sofia.