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MEANING project final event: time for metropolitan cities to look at the future of active citizenship

The international partners of the MEANING project - Metropolitan Europeans in Active Network, Inducing Novelties in Governance, gathered from September 12 to 14 in Zagreb, Croatia, for the project’s final event before the official closure. The project, launched in 2016, brought together a number of metropolitan cities and gave them the chance to exchange experiences about the management of European Metropolitan Cities and discuss their role in the future of European governance, with a specific focus on active citizenship.
During the interactive sessions held in the first day of the event, the international partners had the chance to present local events that have been organized in the framework of the project, discuss the lessons learnt, come up with valuable recommendations for each of the topics tackled, and look at the way forward for metropolitan cities and active citizenship in Europe. On the second day, the local partner Grad Zagreb organized a public conference focused specifically on sustainable urban transport and civic participation. A series of local projects on e-mobility and bicycle transportation were also presented. In the afternoon, international partners introduced some of their projects on sustainable mobility and engaged in an active and fruitful discussion.
In front of a very interested audience, a number of high-level speakers underlined the crucial role of metropolitan cities and the relevance of the project. Among them figured Ms. Olivera Majić, deputy mayor of Zagreb, Mr. Frane Šesnić, Managing Director of Zagreb innovation centre (ZICER), Ms. Branka Mracevic, ALDA Board Member and Carmine Pacente, who represented the metropolitan city of Milan as the leading partner. Ms Mracevic stressed that “The project MEANING is a key tool through which ALDA is promoting citizens’ participation at the local level and has been funded by the European Commission within the framework of the Europe for Citizens Programme. It is a very important moment in which the new European agenda, its priorities and new programmes will be defined so that this networks may be also the occasion for local actors to have their say on the matter. 
This conference has been an occasion to analyze the project’s outcomes project and to reflect on its new programming period from a metropolitan level perspective. ALDA, as representative of both local and regional governments is ready to support the increase of citizens’ awareness and engagement in global challenges, “by acting locally but thinking globally.”
All in all, international partners think that the project was a success and are already looking at the next steps while paving the way for further collaboration. 
More information about the project can be found on the official website, which will be updated in the next few weeks with videos and documents on the activities carried out as well as recommendations and lessons learned 



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