Transformative Cities

2020 Peoples’ Choice Award Finale

02 December 2020, 4pm CET

This event will be simultaneously available in English and Spanish.

2020 has often been called a year of crisis – from COVID-19 to the climate emergency to heightened racial tension, the world appears to be in free fall. But all around the globe, people are developing local solutions to global problems. Three years ago, we launched an award to highlight stories of cities and collectives that are experimenting with new ways to practice democracy and secure access to basic rights. The award aims to connect and strengthen people-led initiatives from across the world.

Three transformative initiatives in four different categories (water, energy, housing and food systems) were selected as the 12 finalists for the Transformative Cities 2020 Award. Between mid-October and mid-November,  11000 people participated in a global public contest and cast their vote for the initiatives they found most inspiring.

On 2 December 2020, the Transformative Cities Initiative will announce which four initiatives received the most popular support and are thus the recipients of the Transformative Cities 2020 People’s Choice Award. One representative per winner will join the finale to discuss the opportunities and challenges for transforming our local contexts and addressing the global challenges we are facing.

The event will be hosted by Shaun Matsheza, the Transnational Institute’s coordinator of the State of Power Podcast series, and will feature two special guests:

Raquel Rolnik. Urban Planner and Professor Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo da Universidade de São Paulo. Former UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing and Secretary of Urban Programmes at the Ministry of Cities during President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s.

Saskia Sassen. Professor at Columbia University. She originated the concept of “the Global City” and has authored more than ten books. Holder of the Principe de Asturias Prize in the Social Sciences, election to the Royal Academy of the Sciences of the Netherlands and made a Chevalier de l´Ordre des Arts et Letters by the French Government.

These are the finalists―who will win the Transformative Cities People’s Choice Award?

In the category Water

Eau de Paris delivers cleaner, cheaper water

Paris, France

Agua Para Todos tackles water privatization and the impact of climate change

Petorca, Chile

Observatorio del Agua de Terrassa ensures a democratic governance of water

Terrassa, Spain

In the category Energy

PENGON empowers Palestinian women as sustainable energy leaders

Gaza, Palestine

EnergÉtica Cooperative challenges energy poverty by supplying clean energy

Valladolid, Spain

The municipality of Burgas pioneers energy efficient housing in Bulgaria

Burgas, Bulgaria

In the category Housing

Citizen's Initiative Referendum against forced demolitions of social housing

Grenoble, France

The Cloughjordan Ecovillage models the transition to a low-carbon society

Cloughjordan, Ireland

CaSanAT is a micro-utopia serving as a space for exchange, learning and resistance

Porto Alegre, Brazil

In the category Food

The Jackson Just Transition Plan is transforming Jackson into a city of equity, solidarity and mutual aid

Jackson, United States

Maison d’Éducation à l’Alimentation Durable supplies the community with organic food and educates future generations

Mouans-Sartoux, France

Penca de Sábila Corporation improves the lives of rural farmers and connects them with urban communities

Medellin, Colombia

This exceptional event will be live-streamed worldwide, giving everyone the opportunity to engage and be part of this celebration of collectives.