Chisinau hosts during 27-29 March 2019 a regional event on designing and testing urban experiments to address complex issues faced by municipalities from Moldova, Serbia, Macedonia and Armenia. The design lab is organized as part of the City Experiment Fund, financed by the Ministry of Finance of the Slovak Republic.

The City Experiment Fund (CEF) is a two-year initiative, that seeks to make sense of and address complex issues playing out in the cities, including impact of migration, climate change and inequality, by working in the intersection of innovative methods and technologies. CEF intends to develop a portfolio of up to 10 diverse, ambitious, and context-specific experiments in partner cities across the region of Europe and Central Asia that unlock the power of inclusive innovation for systems change and exponential impact.

“This is a perfect opportunity for all of us to brainstorm, map the opportunities and challenges in our cities, collaboratively prototype solutions and test our hypotheses, package specific experiments to solve the most pressing urban challenges in our cities,” said Dafina Gercheva, UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Moldova.

The City Teams consist of representatives from the administrative, academia, cultural and NGO sectors. The fund will further support interventions that touch four domains of urban life: public space, public administration, resident life and digital infrastructure. The maximum financial coverage per project is 75,000 USD.

“In the beginning, we were a little skeptical to engage in innovative experiments but then we dared to accept this creative idea, driven by the ambition to make Chisinau’s inhabitants happier. We started with small pilot projects, which results are already notable. Much more is to be done, as we face many complex issues. We are committed to achieve the SDG 11 – sustainable cities and communities,” noted Ruslan Codreanu, interim mayor of Chisinau.

Part of a global trend (hosting almost 25% of the population of Moldova), Chisinau is also one of those urban centers that attracts an increasing number of residents but is not always prepared to adapt its infrastructure to the growing demand.

UNDP Moldova contributes to urban innovation and experimentation work through co-designing urban experiments for improving the quality of life in Chisinau. The experiments cover topics such as mobility, electricity consumption, building of a data platform for Chisinau using partnerships with private sector. Also, UNDP, through its Green City Lab, launched this year several transformative urban initiatives: electric vehicle charging stations, solar trees generating electricity from renewables, 3D-printed benches, air quality measurement devices, online civic engagement platform.

Contact for media: Dumitru Vasilescu, UNDP Moldova, Policy Specialist, dumitru.vasilescu@undp.org, (+373) 60056 55

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