Next2Met participated in the EuroPCom 2020 event organised by the European Committee of the Regions on 7-8 December 2020, which looked at the opportunities and challenges in communication around three key themes: Citizens, Green and Digital.   

The project was showcased under the virtual stand of the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) – Next2Met Advisory Partner responsible for communication activities – and presented in a Live Session, where around 15 participants had the possibility to discover the project and some of its good practices.  

Throughout the event, participants also had the chance to arrange 1:1 meetings with the Next2Met Project Leader and Communication Officer to exchange ideas about projects and engage in productive conversations about various themes connected to Next2Met and soft digitalisation measures.  

This format was a success! Next2Met caught the attention of several participants interested in next-to-metropolitan areas and meetings were held with:  

  • The Municipality of Varese, close to Milan, in Northern Italy; 
  • The Municipality of Vólvi, near Thessaloniki, in Northern Greece;  
  • Trnava Region, around the capital Bratislava, in Slovakia;  
  • Civocracy, a digital participation organisation that aims to foster the connection between citizens and their local government. 

For January 2021, 2 meetings are already planned, one with Kreis-Pinneberg near Hamburg, in Germany and a follow-up meeting with Civocracy.  

Some of the topics discussed during the 1:1 meeting were:  

  • "brain drain” to bigger cities of younger people and “return pull” of inhabitants who have left the region to study and start working life elsewhere; 
  • competition in tourism with more renowned regions; 
  • quality of everyday life as an attraction; 
  • using digitalisation to make (public) services more efficient; 
  • citizens participation and ‘emotional technology’.  

Participants showed an interest for some of Next2Met’s Good Practices such as telecare, tourism, broadband, smart transport, and digital consultations and were keen to further collaborate in projects and/or pilot actions.  

Stay tuned about further developments and contact us if you are also interested in having a chat!  

Feel free to write us for more info: Harri Kuusela ([email protected]), Barbara Favaro ([email protected]