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Open Call: Seeking Applicants for the PLUS Change Ambassadors of Change programme

Open Call: Seeking Applicants for the PLUS Change Ambassadors of Change programme

PLUS Change is looking for 15 candidates from different cultural and professional backgrounds to join our Ambassadors of Change programme. Selected Ambassadors will contribute to discussions on equitable land use, representing the interests of groups that are often excluded from or underrepresented in land use planning and decision making. By joining PLUS Change as an Ambassador, you can have a voice in helping to build a more equitable, sustainable future!

About the project

PLUS Change: Planning Land Use Strategies: Meeting biodiversity, climate and social objectives in a changing world is funded by the Horizon Europe programme and aims to develop strategies and decision-making processes for land use that address challenges related to climate change, biodiversity, and human well-being. In the project, we consider all types of land use (urban, peri-urban, and rural), including agriculture, industry, urban, and nature.

We bring together diverse stakeholders, working with 12 practice cases from across Europe. In these cases, we explore challenging land use topics, and create plans and strategies for creating sustainable land use futures.

Throughout the project, we adopt a social perspective to understand how values, knowledge, governance, power, and roles of different actors interact to influence land use decisions. We strive to recognise the diverse needs and values associated with land use, considering the consequences of effective interventions and good governance. We are producing a range of tools and interventions to shape how land use decisions are made, by citizens, planners and policy makers. Throughout the project, we have a commitment to justice and equity for sustainability.

About the Ambassador role

Land use and land use change affect everyone. As individuals and communities, our unique priorities, needs and wishes shape the kinds of land use futures we want and need. Not everyone currently has an equal voice in land use decision making, and PLUS Change Ambassadors work to ensure that we consider marginalised voices in our project. These voices will act as a link between their own under-represented communities or interest groups and the activities of the PLUS Change project.

As an ambassador, you will help the project to better understand issues that are important to your community/interest group so that we can address them in project decision making and activities. You will also provide feedback on relevant results and outputs from the project, especially when they are of use to your community/interest group.

Ambassadors will undergo an introductory period in the project, where we will jointly develop a plan for how we will work together, to match the community/interest group you represent. This plan will be mindful of practical constraints and your own priorities, as well as those of the project. Activities might include:

  1. Participation in project meetings and/or visits to practice cases.
  2. Representing project activities and results to your own community/interest group through e.g. seminars, presentations, workshops (as appropriate)
  3. Input to, or review of, emerging project outputs to consider the extent to which your community/interest group is represented.
  4. Advising on, or participating in, dissemination and communication of project progress and results to a broad audience.
  5. Offering guidance or advice as to how the project addresses issues of equity and justice in land use planning to meet climate, biodiversity and wellbeing goals.

Who is an Ambassador?

  1. Ambassadors are people who can represent a community or interest group that is often underrepresented in land use decision making in Europe. This may include (but is not limited to), people who are marginalised based on race, gender, age, location.
  2. Ambassadors do not have to be land use professionals or have backgrounds in the topics we cover.
  3. Ambassadors are ideally already working in an organisation, or part of a club or group, that they can represent in the project. This could include NGOs, associations, hobby-based groups, community organisations, and student organisations.
  4. Ambassadors need to be good communicators in English in order to participate in the project. They must also speak the language(s) of the community/interest group they will represent.


  1. Ideally, ambassadors will join the project in Autumn 2024 and accompany the project through to the summer of 2026.
  2. Each ambassador will receive an honorarium of 3000 Euro to cover their time and (minimal) expenses associated with the role.
  3. Ambassadors will be welcomed into project activities and trainings, and are encouraged to use their connections with the project and partners in ways that benefit their own communities/interest groups.

To apply

We are accepting expressions of interest in joining as an Ambassador on an open basis, until all 15 positions are filled. To be considered for an Ambassador role, please send an email to Prof. Julia Leventon (Coordinator of the PLUS Change project and Head of Department of Human Dimensions by The Institute of Global Change Research of the Czech Academy of Science), at  Include information about what community/interest group you represent, who you are, and where you are based (your town and country). Please indicate if you are a member of, or work for, a formal organisation or group that you will represent as an Ambassador.

We anticipate filling all roles towards April 2024, and would welcome your expression of interest by then.

In case of questions, please contact Prof. Julia Leventon, as above


+CityxChange Final Conference has concluded

+CityxChange Final Conference has concluded!

On 3-5 October 2023, A series of insightful sessions on the future of Positive Energy Districts and communities were presented at +CityxChange Final Conference in Trondheim, Norway.

During the event project partners shared implementation experiences and lessons learned from the project around 3 themes of Positive Energy Districts: (1) Enabling a common energy market, (2)Creating connected communities, and (3)Recommendations for new policy interventions, market regulations and business models.

  • After months of hard work (based on 5 years of experiences, numerous lessons learned, and of course, many challenges) the +CityxChange final report “How to PED” cookbook was completed. It contains experiences, lessons learned, and recommendations gained throughout the 5 years of the +CityxChange EU Horizon 2020 project, specifically focused on the variety of activities necessary to design and build Positive Energy Districts (PEDs) in smart sustainable cities and communities. Over the course of the book it drawn on the experiences and joint efforts of the 2 Lighthouse Cities, 5 Follower Cities, and 26 other partners, to demonstrate what it takes to build a PED.
  • The +CxC project shows the importance of collaboration and co-creation, involving the right people, designing effective pathways for change, deploying strong partnerships and financing, adapting to existing processes or building new ones, developing impactful strategies, building new systems and services, and creating new infrastructure in PED projects.
  • The cookbook represents the processes and results of +CityxChange, where all partners and stakeholders contribute with their own recipes & flavours. Just as in real life, recipes often need adjustment to taste. There is no single way to build a PED, so these recipes from our cities provide guidance through the complexities of the journey and share key information that help initiate and smoothen the processes.
Taliah Dommerholt and Samir Amin, Project managers at ISOCARP Institute participated in the +CityxChange Final Conference, and closed this long journey of the project on behalf of ISOCARP Institute.  

Thank you to everyone who participated in the +CityxChange Project. 

You can download the ‘How to PED’ cookbook here

PReSS ReLease 4th progress meeting in leuven, belgium (1)

4th JUSTNature Consortium Meeting

4th JUSTNature Consortium Meeting!

On 10-13 October 2023, Representatives from the 7 cities and 13 organisations that compose the JUSTNature consortium met in person at De Romaanse Poort of Leuven to share experiences and discuss in the 2nd Collaborative CiPeL Workshop, and to review the progress made and the way ahead, especially in light of the review meeting with the Research Executive Agency. As the project transitions into its third year, it now sets its sights on the second phase, which is focused on the implementation of the innovative practices and the dissemination and exploitation of results.

Tannya Pico, Project manager and Methi Laithavewat, Communication manager  at ISOCARP Institute participated in the project meeting in Leuven, Belgium, and presented ongoing communication and dissemination activities, Twinning City activities, and research results on Co-governance indicators and Nature-building communities aiming to establish local coalitions to ensure the ongoing benefits, impact, and maintenance of interventions beyond the project’s duration.

Stay tuned for more updates! And check out the Press Release to discover more about the project.


6th VARCITIES Consortium Meeting

6th VARCITIES Consortium Meeting!

On 14-15 September 2023, the VARCITIES project partners met at the Town Hall of Leuven in Belgium to review the progress made in the project over the past six months and discuss the implementation of the different visionary solutions developed in VARCITIES’ seven Pilots. This September, the project enters its fourth year!

As the project matures and interventions move from implementation to assessing the impacts of nature-based solutions, it is a moment to discuss and generate ideas for implementing the co-evaluation process.

Highlighted Yoann Clouet, Project manager at ISOCARP Institute, who participated in the project meeting in Leuven, Belgium, presented ongoing communication and dissemination activities and planned to ramp up event participation and dissemination towards specific target audiences. Especially with the ICT components of the project going live soon.

Stay tuned for more updates! And check out the Press Release to discover more about the project.

PReSS ReLease 4th progress meeting in leuven, belgium

Down To Earth Study Visit in Molise, Italy

Study Visit in Molise, Italy

From 11th to 13th September 2023, Down to Earth partners were in the Italian region of Molise for the first Study Visit of the project. Organised by project partner Municipality of Campobasso, we explored how the Municipality and its local partners address the challenges related to the topic of Year 1: “Environmental risks related with depopulation and ageing population in rural areas”.

Notably with European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF). Projects in the area are strongly supported by the policy instrument: “Let’s build the future together: new connections for the Campobasso Vast Area Strategy – Strategic Plan for the Campobasso Vast Area”, which will be improved thanks to the exchange of experiences permitted by Down to Earth.  

Throughout this 3-day first Study visit, Down to Earth partners discovered how the challenges of depopulation and ageing population are addressed in Campobasso, illustrating possibilities and activities to manage, maintain and improve natural capital, reduce the risk and impact of environmental disasters, while generating economic and social opportunities to attract people to rural areas. Yoann Clouet, Project managers at ISOCARP Institute participated in the visit.

Read the full press release in this link.

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Down To Earth project kick-off conference in Santiago de Compostela

Down To Earth Project Launch & Kick-off Conference! 

In the last week of June, Down to Earth partners were in Santiago de Compostela for the Inaugural Management meetings and the Public Kick-Off Conference!

Down to Earth – Tackling depopulation challenges to improve environmental resilience in rural areas – kicked off the first conference to the public, highlighting the main challenges faced in many rural areas across Europe, such as land abandonment and climate disasters, but also supporting an economic fabric that allows the agricultural sector to grow sustainably. The project is co-funded by European Union and aims to optimize the utilization of available tools and resources within the participating regions, including Cohesion Policy funds. By doing so, we aspire to promote sustainable development and increase the disaster risk resilience of rural communities across Europe. 

The Kick-Off Meeting brought together 8 dedicated partners introduced the various components of the project, and laid out the steps ahead for the coming months. The ISOCARP Institute participated in the Kick-Off Meeting and presented its upcoming contribution to the Communication and dissemination work plan. As the leader of Communication and Dissemination, we presented our strategy to aggregate project results in multimedia dissemination and increase and maintain the visibility of the project to the EU-level public.

Stay tuned for more updates! And check out the Press Release to discover more about the project

PLUSCHANGE Kick off meeting

PlusChange project kick-off meeting announced

PLUS Change Project Launch & Kick off Meeting! 

On the 12th to 14th June 2023, the PLUS Change project was officially kicked-off! PLUS Change (Planning Land Use Strategies: Meeting biodiversity, climate and social objectives in a changing world) is funded by the Horizon Europe programme and aims to develop strategies and decision-making processes for land use that effectively address challenges related to climate change, biodiversity, and human well-being. By bringing together diverse stakeholders and examining case studies from various regions in Europe, the project emphasizes the interconnectedness between urban, regional, and peri-urban areas. The overarching goal is to generate knowledge and drive transformative change towards a sustainable world.

The Kick-Off Meeting took place in Prague and brought together representatives from 14 countries and 23 institutions including the ISOCARP Institute as well as public administrations, universities, and field experts. Together, the partners introduced the various components of the project and laid out the steps ahead for the coming months.

The ISOCARP Institute took part in the Kick-Off Meeting and presented its upcoming contribution for the Dissemination, communication and exploitation plan. As the leader of the Dissemination, communication and exploitation Work Package, we presented our plan to aggregate project results in multimedia dissemination as a central hub for activities within this work package, and acts as the anchor for disseminating project deliverables and fostering their exploitation. This is a multi-format strategy, centred on the project website and online hub, in which we will build a community of knowledge by showcasing practice cases, disseminating artistic output and interactive modules.

Stay tuned for more updates! And check out the Press Release to discover more about the project.

The final intensive study programme of the Erasmus + project WAVE!

The final Intensive Study Programme of the Erasmus+ project WAVE!

We are in Nürtingen until 29th June for the final Intensive Study Programme of the Erasmus+ project WAVE!

University students from Belgium, Estonia, Germany, Italy, and Romania will focus on discovering and proposing alternatives the corridor of the Tiefenbach valley, specifically in Nürtingen city center, where the waterway is visually absent. Together with WAVE partners, we will guide them in their efforts to adopt a landscape perspective to envision these alternative futures for the Tiefenbach in Nürtingen. 

We are super excited to see new and returning students discover the WAVE methods!

As part of the exploration, students studied the water system, its interplay with natural, social, and economic factors, and their profound impact on land use and landforms. They now have to critically evaluate these cause-effect relationships on the landscape values and ecosystem services and formulate new design prototypes! These will serve as tangible representations of their concepts and will help illustrate the transformative possibilities for the landscape as part of the Landscape Forum on 27th June -1st July, co-organised by IFLA Europe and LE:Notre Institut


Down to Earth – Interregional cooperation for sustainable, resilient and attractive rural areas

ISOCARP INSTITUTE partners in Interreg
Europe project DOWN TO EARTH

We are excited to announce the launch of our new project “DOWN TO EARTH” funded by the Interreg Europe programme. This project aims to lead to a better use of available tools and resources, including Cohesion Policy funds, in the participating regions, ultimately seeking to promote sustainable development and increase the disaster risk resilience of rural communities across Europe.

DOWN-TO-EARTH gathers a group of organisations working on different aspects related to disaster risk reduction and rural development from regions across Europe, who firmly believe that retaining population and encouraging sustainable practices in key sectors is crucial to curb environmental deterioration, and can greatly contribute to risk prevention.

The partnership is composed of 8 partners, and two associated policy authorities, led by Axencia Galega de Desenvolvemento Rural, and will work together to identify and promote win-win solutions to manage, maintain and enhance natural capital to reduce the risk and impact of environmental disasters, while generating economic and social opportunities to attract population to rural areas.

Thanks to mutual learning through interregional exchange of experiences, the capacities of the regional and local authorities as well as relevant stakeholders from the participating rural areas to deal with the identified challenges will be increased.

Or download the document here.


DUST project kick-off meeting announced

Exciting News: DUST Launch Meeting! 

Yesterday the launch meeting of one of our new projects, DUST, took place online. Funded by Horizon Europe, the EU’s research and innovation programme, #DUST (“Democratising jUst Sustainability Transitions”), aims to bring European policies closer to citizens for the future of democracy and civic participation, especially in regions deeply affected by sustainability transitions, notably the regions dependent on energy-intensive industries that are a target by the Just Transition Fund (as part the European Cohesion Policy).

The meeting marked the official start of the DUST project. It is an opportunity to get to know DUST partners and advisory board members, and introduce the project elements and the roles of everyone.

As the leader of the Communication and Dissemination Work Package, we presented our plan to integrate effective communication at the core of our tasks, i.e. how we will make sure that the project engages with marginalised communities in a manner that is mindful of their own communication habits, using tools beyond words.

Stay tuned for more updates! follow us on social media channel.