International project moves forward in discussions on smart and sustainable cities

CAP4CITY event, organized by PUCRS, featured researchers from 12 European and Latin American universities

23/12/2021 - 09h22

Photo: Matheus Gomes

The annual meeting of the project Strengthening Governance Capacity for Smart Sustainable Cities Erasmus+ – CAP4CITY – funded by the European Union, took place in early December 2021 and brought together researchers from 12 universities in 7 countries. The main goal of the project is to devise an 80-hour MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) on smart and sustainable cities, and materials that will be available for any organization in the world to plan their own course.

This edition, because of the pandemic, blended online and on-site activities. The project coordinator, Gabriele Viale Pereira, and researcher Lucy Temple, from Danube University Krems (DUK) and PUCRS’ Business School professor, Dr. Edimara Mezzomo Luciano, welcomed the partners, at Living 360º, and virtually on Zoom. At the meeting, project members discussed the 2021 outcomes and planned activities for 2022, aiming to strengthen governance capacities for smart and sustainable cities.

The project includes researchers from seven different countries: 4 from Europe (Austria, Netherlands, Estonia and Poland) and 4 from Latin America (Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Colombia). “The initiative embraces a great diversity of specialists in areas such as Business Administration, Public Management, Political Sciences, Social Sciences, Information Systems and Engineering, as a transdisciplinary action”, Edimara highlights.

Project developments

CAP4CITY has made significant progress in the dissemination of information on smart and sustainable cities by developing programs on the topic at universities participating in the Consortium. This has caused a major impact on students from different programs.

Training sessions on the use and development of teaching and learning tools related to Smart and Sustainable Cities were offered to students and teaching staff. These include the educational database to develop courses related to the topic.

Another advance was the development of workshops in various national and international events, aiming to identify which capabilities of smart cities should be developed. Then, 31 courses are being planned. They will be available at no charge to people or companies that wish organize courses based on this material.


Photo: Matheus Gomes

PUCRS is putting in practice the topics developed under CAP4CITY. For instance, the course Integration Project I is now mandatory in the undergraduate program in Business Administration. It discusses topics such as smart cities and has employed some of the materials developed under the project. On the other hand, the course Participatory Smart and Sustainable Cities is being offered in some graduate programs.

On top of that, four workshops were offered. The first featured members of the university and the community. The second featured undergraduate students involved in the Business School’s

academic week. The third was offered at Tecnopuc Experience, with the Tecnopuc community. And the last one featured Brazilian researchers in the largest Business Administration event in Brazil: ENANPAD. Overall, the event mobilized more than 140 people.

Prospects for 2022

Actions for the next year were defined in the last meeting. The idea is to complete the activities planned under the project, record the MOOCs and share findings in events on capacities for smart and sustainable cities in the project’s member countries. It is hoped that the project’s final meeting will be in Colombia, on a date yet to be defined. At PUCRS, an extension program should be offered next year, with a focus on smart city governance and sustainability. Joint actions are also being discussed with the other ERASMUS projects coordinated by the Business School – ClimateLabs – whose social innovation laboratory has been recently opened.

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