Baltic Metropolises Action Plan 2008 – 2010

Baltic Metropolises Action Plan 2008 – 2010

The eleven member cities of the Baltic Metropoles Network (BaltMet) will continue joint work for greater competitiveness and integration in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR). The main policy focus areas of the Network shall be: 1) innovation promotion, 2) regional identity building and marketing, 3) infrastructure and sustainable development, and 4) integration and capitalisation of urban expertise. These focus areas constitute the core of the BaltMet cities’ vision of integrated, globally established and competitive Baltic Sea Region and represent the main directions for metropolitan cooperation in 2008 – 2010.

The joint lobbying efforts of the BaltMet cities will continue to advocate interests of the metropolitan cities in context of the BSR and the EU. The network shall work in collaboration with other BSR partners, and seeks to actively involve academic and business actors.

The BaltMet cities will continue promoting synergies and best practice exchange in relevant areas of city administration as well as cultural and information exchange among the metropolises, in order to advance the progressive socio-economic development and integration of the Region.

BaltMet Agenda - from Copenhagen 2002 and Berlin 2005 to Tallinn 2007

The Copenhagen Resolution (2002), the founding document of BaltMet, set the main objectives and the focus areas of the Network as innovation and brain circulation and identity building and marketing of metropolises in the BSR. From 2005 to 2007, these objectives have been successfully developed within the flagship project BaltMet Inno, as well as project initiatives BaltMet Invest and BaltMet Exchange. The recommendations of the BaltMet Inno show how the innovation synergies between BaltMet cities can be further exploited through joint actions in collaboration with universities and private sector.

The Mayors’ Meetings in Berlin and Stockholm (2005) emphasised how integrated and competitive BSR cannot exist without adequate infrastructure and that sustainable development and environment of the Baltic Sea cannot be left aside from metropolitan cooperation. The BaltMet Infra initiative, launched at the Mayors’ Meeting in Helsinki (2006), opened the discussion and joint work to advance key Pan-Baltic projects in transport infrastructure and environment.

The new Action Plan 2008-2010 follows the priorities set in the previous documents, adding a special focus on promotion of mobility and information exchange among the member-citeis, in order to facilitate the diffusion of knowledge and greater integration among the Region’s metropolises.

The BaltMet policy objectives are actively supporting common European and Baltic strategies, especially the Lisbon Strategy for Growth and Jobs, EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, and the Northern Dimension Framework Document.

Implementation framework

The objectives of the Network shall be realised through concrete cooperation initiatives among the member cities, summarised in the action points below. Each action point is backed by a coordinating city which assumes initiative for developing and implementing the actions in cooperation with other BaltMet partners, with an overall coordination provided by the Secretariat and the Chair Cities.

BaltMet is a voluntary network offering an umbrella structure for metropolitan cooperation. Each individual project or initiative shall be approved by the cities involved, especially with regard to costs that may arise. New projects and initiatives can be introduced by member cities during the Action Plan period, with an agreement of the other members of the network.

The delegated Officials representing member-cities in the Network shall continue playing a liaison role with their city administrations. The group of Officials shall be entrusted the task of development, monitoring, and overseeing the projects and initiatives and reporting the progress to the Mayors.

Baltic Metropoles activity areas 2008 - 2010

1. Innovation promotion

BaltMet cities will build on the recommendations of the BaltMet Inno project in promoting the cohesive and competitive innovation environment in the Baltic Sea Region. The triple-helix partnerships, or partnership between public administration, business and research institutions, is seen as core approach in all actions to this aim.

1.1. BaltMet cities will undertake activities to facilitate joint cluster development and to support promotion of science-based entrepreneurship through cooperation between business incubators, transfer of tools, and exchange of expertise;

1.2. BaltMet cities will undertake joint actions to foster the development of creative industries in the Metropolises;

1.3. BaltMet cities will promote strengthening of cooperation among cities and partners in the development of existing and establishment of new science and technology centres;

1.4. BaltMet cities will explore the possibilities of public procurement in introducing and using new, innovative products and services.

2. Regional identity building and marketing

BaltMet cities will foster closer co-operation in marketing and branding of the Baltic Sea Region, actively working together with other key regional actors to promote the BSR in Europe and globally.

2.1. BaltMet will support the events building the identity of the Baltic Sea Region locally and internationally, as well as promote city cooperation in the area of marketing, including joint representation at international and global forums;

2.2. BaltMet will explore and launch activities for the unified Baltic Sea Region promotion project from a metropolitan perspective.

3. Infrastructure and sustainable development

BaltMet cities will promote the cooperation in sustainable planning of city infrastructure, incorporating the environmental concerns. In accordance with Mayors’ Resolution of 2006, BaltMet will continue taking an active part in the development of the common BSR transport strategies.

3.1. BaltMet cities will cooperate in field of innovative and sustainable city planning and development;
 
3.2. BaltMet cities will foster the improvement of the surface transport infrastructure (e.g., rail connections) in the Baltic Sea Region;

 3.3. BaltMet cities will support the Baltic Sea Environmental Challenge and European Green Capital Award initiatives;

3.4. BaltMet cities will promote the exchange of experience in Private-Public-Partnership models in development of modern infrastructure in municipalities.

4. Integration and capitalisation of urban expertise

BaltMet will promote cooperation and exchange of best practices among the city administrators. The Network shall also aim to facilitate mobility of city professionals as key ingredient in increasing competitiveness and regional integration, and to include academic institutions and enterprises in such exchange.

4.1. BaltMet cities will promote mutual information exchange and jointly improve the services in the information/communication field via the BaltMet InfoForum initiative;

4.2. BaltMet cities will explore to develop a model of exchanging the staff of the city administration departments, universities and enterprises established on the basis of the BaltMet Exchange pilot project;

4.3. BaltMet shall support the member-cities collaboration and experience exchange in the management of metropolitan health care.

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