EUREKA International Short School Bilbao

Last milestone of Urban Innovators Training Program: Bilbao International Short School!

Students and participants of EUREKA Urban Innovators Training Program will meet from October 23 to 27 to present the final projects they have been developing during the last academic year.

This is the final meeting of our innovative learning process, where 60 students from Amsterdam, Venice, Timisoara and Bilbao have been working on new solutions to real-life urban challenges, acquiring new skills and knowledge to become urban innovators.

During the Bilbao International Short School, the students’ teams will present the proposals and actions they have implemented during the EUREKA Urban Living Labs. Partner organisations, mentors and other students will review their proposals in a final peer-to-peer evaluation.

The Short School will also include thematic meetings with local entrepreneurs focused on four key areas related to urban innovation: Housing, rehabilitation and youth, Economic development, job creation and green energy, New economy and sustainability, and Creativity, makers and cooperatives. During these encounters, students will meet with key stakeholders such as economic development agencies, social enterprises and creative organisations in order to share experiences, needs and opportunities. 

The meeting will also be a moment to celebrate and share final insights, proposals and conclusions regarding the first edition of the Urban Innovators Training Program, a multidisciplinary curriculum designed jointly by universities, cultural practitioners and policy-makers for the rising professional profile of urban innovators.


You can find the full programme of the event here.


More photos can be found here.

Photo credit: Mikeldi Donibane Sanjuan


For each of our International schools we have created a simple press kit that we have shared among the partners and students to help them share the event with their networks and colleagues. Download one for the Bilbao school HERE.

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EUREKA International Short School Timisoara

EUREKA International Short Summer School took place in Timisoara, Romania, on 8-11 May 2023. Forty five students from four European countries took part in the event. The main goal of this gathering was to bring together students of our experimental training after 6 months of working in their national clusters and remotely.

The five days that the students spent together they shared their progress in their own Urban Living Labs with the rest of the group to receive the feedback from their international peers and mentors. They had also a chance to explore the local context through massive and ambitious urban development projects led by the City Hall and their city planning team, such as the reconstruction of the Bega river public areas or the revitalisation of the historical city centre.

At the same time, the participants got to know alternative spaces that exist in the city and work with urban regeneration and community engagement topics. One of the project partners and co-hosts of the event – AMBASADA cultural centre – shared with the students their own story and how they managed to build community around the space, run successful public events, and help local artists and creatives to develop their own projects.

As part of the programme, students were asked to do small prototype interventions on the spot in the area of Pta Flavia/ Dâmbovița Area. The area is known for its lack of green and public spaces, ageing population, low-income economy and proximity to the local flea market. Students had just a few hours and zero budget to implement their intervention. However, all groups came up with very ingenious solutions, often using creating methods to engage local community.

The event finished with a day of reflection, visits to two local initiatives and private urban development projects – ArtEncounters/Isho and Cetățean de Traian (Historical buildings rehabilitation office). Those projects helped students to see how private investors operate and better understand the current complex city matrix of Timisoara.


AMBASADA is a place, created by PLAI, where organisations and people with an interest in the social and cultural field can meet to collaborate, be creative, and receive support and know-how to make their projects a reality and to impact the future of a local and European level in a sustainable and community-oriented way.

AMBASADA is a community. It is not a single player nor a single voice. It is the spark and synergy that gets created over a society’s need, a community challenge, the solutions that get born over a great cup of coffee while meeting people from all sectors of work. AMBASADA is also spirit, the strong belief that together, of all ages, shapes, forms and beyond labels, with both responsibility and accountability, involvement and hard work, we can thrive to whatever challenge tomorrow brings.

About West University of Timisoara

The Western University of Timișoara is an educational institution with tradition and an important pillar of social life and beneficial energy for the city. Through the 11 faculties of UVT, the university offers more than 160 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs.

Photo Credits: Remus Daescu



For each of our International Schools we have created a simple press kit to help partners share the event with their networks and stakeholders. Download here the press kit for Timisoara.

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EUREKA International Short School Amsterdam

Urban Innovators Training Programme started with International Short Summer School on 11-14 October in Amsterdam. The School brought together 60+ students from across Europe who are meeting for the first time in the capital of the Netherlands to explore the local urban context and city policies; get to know each other better, exchange ideas around their local Urban Living Labs and create synergies and connections between the cities.


Tuesday, 11 October 

14.00-16.00 CEST

  • Welcoming words
  • Getting to know each other looking at what we want to accomplish in this short school: curiosity game (MissQ)
  • Setting the agenda together
  • Mindset of the short-school
  • Sign up for the bike tours 

16.30-18.30 CEST

  • What are we dreaming for a city to be in 20 years or so? Who will take ownership? – talk by Stan Majoor Presentation (Lecturer and director Center of Expertise Urban Governance and Social Innovation at the University of Applied Sciences Amsterdam)
  • European civic initiatives as actors of urban innovation – talk by Francesco Campagnari (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow, Centre d’étude des mouvements sociaux, École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS)
  • Panel discussion and Q&A with Stan Majoor and Francesco Campagnari

Wednesday, 12 October

10.00-13.00 CEST

  • Bike tours through Amsterdam:

Circular & Community-Driven Transformations in Amsterdam North. Track 1 will take participants to Amsterdam North, a hotspot for post-industrial and polluted sites which are currently being transformed into sustainable and circular communities. The area is unique for its “bottom-up” approach, characterized by citizen- and community-driven projects.  Highlights include “Schoonschip”, which aims to be European’s most sustainable floating district, and NDSM-werf, once Amsterdam’s largest shipbuilding yard, now a creative and cultural hotspot. 

Waterfront Transformations in the Eastern Harbor District. The Eastern Harbor District, of “Eastern Docklands” represents one of Europe’s most successful waterfront redevelopment projects.  The series of artificial peninsulas which once functioned as the city’s main port have been transformed into a highly successful residential district for approximately 8,000 new households.  This track includes stops at Funenpark, Amsterdam’s most iconic car-free residential area, and the Marineterrein (Amsterdam’s Navy Terrain) which is partially being transformed into an innovation district.

Transformations of Zuidas, Amsterdam’s Financial District. Track 3 will take participants to Zuidas, (literally “South Axis” in Dutch) – Amsterdam’s rapidly developing business district. Zuidas is the site of one of Netherlands’ largest and most complex infrastructure projects: the “Zuidasdok” which involves the partial tunneling of the city’s ring road, and the redevelopment of the Amsterdam-Zuid Station and its surroundings.  Other highlights include “Circl” – Amsterdam’s first circular pavilion, and the city’s first smart bike parking garage.


  • Mentoring path presentation and buddy system by Melting Pro
  • Workshops to help participants find perfect buddy matches

Thursday, 13 October 2022


Visit to Amsterdam Urban Living Lab: stakeholders analysis and a brainstorm session


  • Presentation of Urban Living labs in all cities
  • Stakeholders analysis
  • Finding synergies & local challenges 


Dinner and party 

Friday, 14 October 2022

  • Working together: communication platform, rules and guidelines
  • Evaluation of the School
  • Next steps 

More photos here

Photo credit: Bert Wisse

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Urban Innovation Forum

How to support the transformations of cities? How to develop initiatives and projects able to innovate the way we interact in space and to create new spaces of inclusion? And, in particular, how to train professionals able to foster this kind of innovation in Europe?

These are the questions that the Erasmus+ project EUREKA is trying to answer! Over the course of eighteen months, the project has been researching the current needs for training on urban regeneration in Europe and in particular in four partner countries: Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Romania. We have also launched co-design tables at national and European level to develop a European training curriculum for the urban innovators of tomorrow that will start its test round this fall! 

During the Urban Innovation Forum we are going to present the results of the project and our training proposal. We will host a roundtable discussion with European projects, policy-makers and practitioners working in the field to gather their feedback and opinion on the best training models and approaches in urban innovation. 

Preliminary programme

16.00-16.40 Welcome and presentation of the EUREKA training by the project partners

16.40-17.30 Roundtable Urban Innovation experts from across Europe

17.30-18.00 Q&A session – questions from the public. 


  • Hettie Politiek, Program Manager Democracy and Participation (Municipality of Amsterdam)

Hettie works for the municipality of Amsterdam and has a strong focus on bottom-up approaches, participation and residential (re)developments. She is program manager Democracy, and develops innovative approaches for citizen involvement. Hettie was one of the founding figures of the master Urban Management at the HvA, Amsterdam University of Applied Studies.

Jaap Draaisma, Resercher at University of Applied Studies Amstedm

Jaap is researcher at the HvA, University of Applied Studies Amsterdam, department of Urban Issues. His research is called ‘Amsterdam Sortingmachine’ (see: www.amsterdam sorting machine.nl). Jaap is a social geographer, engaged in the development of cultural real estate in Amsterdam and the alternative culture of this city. He is former director of Urban Resort, the biggest organization of cultural incubators in Amsterdam.

  • Professor Laura Lieto, Professor of Urban Planning (The University of Naples Federico II) and City Planning Councilor for the Municipality of Naples

Laura Lieto is full professor of urban planning at “Federico II” University, Naples (Italy) – Department of Architecture. Her work focuses on urban informality, trans-national urbanism and planning regulation, with a socio-materialist orientation inspired by Actor Network theory and assemblage. She is also currently City Planning Councilor for the Municipality of Naples. 

  • Rudolf Gräf, Architect and Mayor Advisor in Timisoara

Is an architect and an urban planner. Worked on urban planning in Eastern Europe, specifically in Ukraine. Was responsible for integrated urban development in the city council of Chernivtsi. At the moment is Advisor to the Mayor of City Hall of Timisoara on Integrated Urban Development and SDGs. Gräf also works as faciliator and moderator of Urban Planning workshops.

  • Idoia Postigo, General Director of Bilbao Metropoli-30

Extensive education, which includes European and American universities such as the University of Oxford, the London School of Economics in the United Kingdom, and the University of Berkeley (California – USA). 

Idoia Postigo is graduated in Political Sciences (International Relations) and in Psychology. She counts on a Master on Organisational Behaviour.

Experience in urban marketing strategies and international communication skills in USA, UK, Latin America, Australia and Asia for nearly years.

She has been working in Bilbao Metropoli-30 since 1991. As General Director of this organisation, she has been in charge of promoting and disseminating the Revitalisation Plan of Metropolitan Bilbao. Her job has contributed to place BM30 as a reference point for the main actors responsible for the urban development of the metropolis, especially public institutions. 

She is individual and team coach, as well as mentor of the Law and Economist Associations and collaborator of the Association of Entrepreneur Women “EmakumeEkin”. She counts on a personal blog “Emotionak Fabrika” and is the author of three books in Spanish: two novels and a two technical publication about “Professional and emotional team management”, as well as “Essential Guide for Entrepreneur Women”.

  • Cansu. P. Isbilen, ACT 19-21 and “Tramp Kitchen” project from Izmir, Turkey. Member of Actors of Urban Change Community

Cansu studied bachelor of architecture and MSc in Industrial Product Design with a semester in TU Delft. She has been deeply involved in various civil society and cultural projects. In 2021, she co-created a Project called ‘With Design.’ Which facilitates designers to create interventions in various public spaces. In 2020, together with their partner she founded  tibia x fibula , where they work across disciplines to design and create live experiences and other things by collaborating with people, initiatives and festivals. In 2019, she initiated the Tramp Kitchen project  based on  creating awareness towards the production and consumption cycles of food systems in Izmir towards sustainability, inclusivity, diversity and fair resilience. Also, since 2015 Cansu works at Izmir Metropolitan Municipality for the Izmir History Project as a design researcher and facilitator coordinating collaborations, research and design processes of public spaces as well as revitalization of the historical city center of Izmir.

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Session at TEH Conference 93

What are the best methodologies to train professionals of urban innovation? What type of content should the curriculum focus on? How should professionals be trained to foster collective ownership of planning projects?

We participated in TEH Conference 93 in Prague that brings together 300+ cultural practitioners from across the globe. During our session we shared with 20 participants from Europe and beyond our draft training curriculum that we have been working on in the past 18 months. The curriculum will be tested between October 2022 and October 2023 and the session allowed us to gather the feedback on the first draft from professionals, thinkers and activists.

Photo credit: Darja Lukjanenko 

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Partners’ Meeting Venice

On 2-6 May, 2022, the EUREKA partners met to discuss the results of the co-design tables that happened across Europe. Together we worked on a draft training curriculum, making sure it meets all the needs and skills that we identified during the research process.


2 May: Arrival, Tour around the University of Venice and Interim Report Update
3 May: Working Session – Co-designing of the training
4 May: Working Session and Trip to Giudecca island
5 May: Working Session – Co-designing of the training
6 May: Urban Innovation Forum planning and trip to Lagoon.

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