210707_JUSTNature_general map

Upcoming EU funded research project JUSTNature

Upcoming EU funded project – JUSTNature   

July 7, 2021

ISOCARP Institute is proud to announce that the European Commission has signed the grant agreement for the EU funded project JUSTNature. ISOCARP Institute is part of the consortium which will implement the project, starting from 1st September 2021 until February 2026, together with other 18 partners and under the lead of EURAC.

The overall objective of JUSTNature is the activation of Nature-based Solutions, by ensuring a just transition to low-carbon cities, based on the principle of the right to ecological space.  JUSTNature represents the Institute’s third project on NBS in less than five years, strengthening its international reputation and expertise on the topic. The work of the Institute is consistent with ISOCARP’s vision of promoting inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities, and of contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals.

JUSTNature – Activation of NATURE-based solutions for a JUST low-carbon transition    

Cities are major energy consumers and significantly contribute to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. They have a high density of socio-economic activities and a built environment design that enhance these issues. In this regard, especially developed cities can be exemplars in leading the way towards a low-carbon society, and turning it into an opportunity as recently iterated by the European Green Deal. Such advances can address several other challenges arising from urbanisation and structural socio-economic changes. Cities represent a complex setting, where low income populations are more exposed to environmental ills, environmental and climate impacts are not distributed evenly, environmental qualities are becoming increasingly exclusive to high-income households, and wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse than others. Debates on these inequities have gained further traction linked to the recent spread of SARS-CoV-2, leading to discussions on the future pathway of economic and social development due to the social and economic disruptions caused by the physical distancing and lockdown measures.

In this regard, the overall objective of JUSTNature is the activation of nature-based solutions (NbS) by ensuring a just transition to low-carbon cities, based on the principle of the right to ecological space. This in particular refers to the right to clean air and indoor/outdoor thermal comfort for human health and well-being, as well as thriving biodiversity and ecosystems. It also refers to the duty of not constraining the ecological space of others, in particular in relation to the mitigation of climate change and measures required for reducing GHG emissions. JUSTNature will contribute to this vision of shaping low-carbon cities by developing a set of typical Low carbon | High air quality NbS in seven European city practice labs. By activating their just implementation, it will drive the co-design, co-creation and co-decision of supporting interventions with regard to four innovation dimensions: 1) enabling effective governance, 2) enabling NbS system maintenance and operation, 3) enabling innovative business models and market design, and 4) enabling efficient technologies and applications.

The seven European City Practice Labs are: Bolzano-Merano (Italy), Chania (Greece), Gzira (Malta), Leuven (Belgium), Munich (Germany) and Szombathely (Hungary).  



Keywords: Nature-based solutions, low/zero carbon communities, climate change mitigation & adaptation, ecological space, environmental justice, air quality, ICT solutions, big data, policy & governance, urban design.  


Within the consortium, ISOCARP Institute will implement various communication and dissemination activities, and it will support cross-learning activities between municipalities. Furthermore, the Institute will deliver a report on good practices for the co-governance of nature-based solutions.
A preliminary Consortium meeting will take place on 12th July, while the kick-off meeting will be help in September 2021.


This project will receive funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme. Call H2020-LCCLA-2020 Innovative nature-based solutions for carbon neutral cities and improved air quality.



Do not hesitate to contact us for any question or further information.