City and municipal administrations are closest to citizens. Hence, their services and activities are an essential part of crisis response. Currently, we observe the tremendous territorial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, local capacities of health-care systems, social service provision, or business support determine the resilience of municipalities, cities, and regions.
While national governments and European institutions are taking the lead in tackling this crisis, regional and local authorities have a key role in the implementation. As local administrations are putting emergency mechanisms in place and adapt their services, they aim at supporting citizens and businesses.
Against this background, ESPON is collecting experiences and good practices of local and regional policy responses to COVID-19. In doing so, ESPON seeks to share knowledge and expertise with all European regions.
Currently, ESPON is looking for best practices and local/regional initiatives linked to adapting public services. Thereby, the examples should help to monitor the territorial impact of the crisis and support the design of better responses for the future.
ESPON looks for local initiaves with the following criteria:
- How regions/cities adapt services/policies towards people over 65
- How do they use/ adjust digital public services to address the situation
- How is the situation impacting the relations with neighboring regions (especially in border areas)
- What kind of specific responses have been developed for the population in rural/remote areas
- What kind of specific local support is provided to SMEs (beyond national financial support)
Please find more information on the ESPON initiative and how to share good practices here.
What we can learn from other cities?
In addition to this initiative, ESPON presents a list of organisations and platforms that already started collections of good practices. One of this platforms is the EuroCities platform “Live updates COVID-19”.
With this platform, EuroCities presents policies and measures from European cities from the following areas:
- Economiy & jobs
- Exit & Recovery
- Food Supply
- Limit the spread
- Public Services
- Social Services
The EuroCities platform not only provides information on local policies, but also organises online meetings on COVID-19 related funding and policies. Likewise, the online forum offers the possibility to discuss with peers.
- ESPON – Collecting experiences and evidence on local and regional responses to COVID19
- EuroCities COVID-19 platform
- Funding for measures to tackle SARS-COV-2 | PA10
Featured image – Photocredit : Ronny Hartmann | Source: EC – Audiovisual Service