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URBAMECO network focused on strategies and projects that can foster  sustainable integrated regeneration of critical urban areas of disadvantage with a special focus on local economy development as key aspect to fight social exclusion.
  • Integrated Urban Development Physical Urban Development

The question of the sustainable character of growth based on modernization of the EU economy and social cohesion cannot be accomplished without taking into consideration  problems of social exclusion. This is often connected to spatial difficulties more severe in particular neighbourhoods due to socio-economic and political processes that brought the deterioration of the environment, bad condition of social housing and services, wastelands and urban sprawl while hitting particular population at risk of exclusion such as women, young people, long-term unemployed, migrants and ethnic minorities.

The object of this network is to facilitate economic development fostering integrated regeneration of critical districts and neighbourhoods prioritized and selected by the municipalities participating in the network. Their prioritization is based on statistical parameters and indicators, whose classification changes from country to country but which hardly mirrors the multifaceted realities at local level. Each target area has a diverse history of transformations, social features, geography and political conditions, that created complex and different processes of disadvantage.  This diversity is also reflected and discernible in the strategies governing territories because often, municipal administrations operate in fragmented policy domains at home which may hinder attempts of implementing integrated planning strategies as those fostered by the EU projects. URBAMECO tried to overcome this issue by setting several schemes of collaboration among the partner cities, local stakeholders, Managing Authorities and DGregio to match the aims of OP and the drafting of Local Action Plans at city level.

Since September 2007, the network works on drafting Local Action Plans addressing specific target areas several levels.

At Local level a  Local Action Team (LAT) is set up within the municipality to  interface with the URBAMECO netowkr and to encourage and steer the top down and bottom up cooperation of different agencies and sectors together with the  Urbact Local Support Group (ULSG),  a forum  whose structure changes from city to city that include private and public stakeholders. From case to case, the MA either participates directly at the ULSG or collaborates with the LAT.

At network level, URBAMECO works on different geometries of collaborations, among MAs to understand different policy setting across EU regarding the experiences of OPs implementation regarding URBAMECO topics;  among cities with guided 1o1 exchanges and intake visits/workshops; among MAs and cities to understand reciprocal constraints and opportunities regarding the drafting, feasibility and implementation of the LAP during thematic seminars, workshops, site visit and peer reviews.

At EU level, the cooperation with members of the DG regio, supports and guide with thematic and strategic inputs regarding specific issues along the life time of the network.

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