C40 Students Reinventing Cities
A global competition for students to share their vision for green & thriving city neighbourhoods.
Students Reinventing Cities provides a unique opportunity for academics and students to collaborate with global cities. Together they will imagine a more sustainable and inclusive vision for cities everywhere, by rethinking how neighborhoods are planned and designed.
This competition comes at a key moment – we know that the next decade will determine whether we can avoid runaway climate change. Across the world, cities are strengthening their climate commitments and actions. They are developing an ambitious agenda for a green and just recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and building a broad coalition with youth climate activists, representatives from labour, business, academia and civil society.
Join this global movement and share your ideas!
If you are a teacher, dean or member of the academic world we invite you to sign our Manifesto for a Green and Just Future.
- Buenos Aires
- Quezon City
- Washington, D.C.
- Kick-Off – 10 Dec 2020
- Registration – 18 March 2021
- Submission of the final projects – 27 May 2021
- Announcement of Winning Projects – July 2021
Overview of the Competition
18 global cities have identified small neighborhoods, blocks or main streets they intend to revive. Together with C40, they invite multidisciplinary teams of students from around the world to imagine a pathway to decarbonize these urban areas and improve the quality of life for local communities. Students Reinventing Cities will:
• actively drive collaboration between students and city governments to deliver new approaches for low carbon urbanisation;
• support the development of new ideas and innovative solutions that can be rolled out on a global scale;
• create a space for academics and students to contribute to addressing the climate crisis and shaping a future that has climate and social justice at its heart;
• strengthen students’ knowledge on the leading policies, solutions and technologies on sustainability.
Structure of the competition
Participants can choose one ( or several ) site( s ) from the 18 participating cities. Participants do not need to choose the site from the city they reside or study in.
Alongside the main rules and regulations document each city has prepared a Site Form to present its site and detail the city’s objectives and specifications for their projects. An online folder ( “dataroom” ) where cities share all relevant data and documents related to each site is also available.
*Please note the calendar has been updated and the registration deadline postponed to give more time to teams to register. Rules and regulations have been updated to reflect this change*
Competition kick-off: 10 December 2020
• Q&A via the site pages on this website ( from 18 February to 1 April 2021 )
• Series of webinars to present the competition and the sites ( February and March 2021 )
Registration ( mandatory ): participating teams must register by Thursday 15 April 2021 at 5 pm Coordinated Universal Time ( UTC )
• Q&A via the site pages on this website ( from 29 April to 13 May 2021 );
• Series of webinars to support the teams to shape their project ( April and May 2021 )
Submission of the Final Project: By Thursday 27 May 2021 at 5pm Coordinated Universal Time ( UTC )
Analysis of the proposals and final selection by the juries ( one jury for each site )
Announcement of the winning projects: July 2021
- Teams must be composed of current students ( undergraduate or graduate ), enrolled during the 2020-2021 ( or 2021 ) academic year.
- Teams may include participants from multiple departments such as architecture, urbanism, environment, engineering, real estate development, sociology, economy, art, etc.
- It is expected that in developing a response, students will draw on knowledge from a wide range of disciplines.
- To support this, teams may combine members from the same university or different universities. The Students Reinventing Cities competition encourages international collaboration between universities.
- It is recommended ( but not required ) to appoint a member in charge of the project design such as a student in architecture or urbanism, and a member with environmental knowledge.
- It is recommended ( but not required ) to have a faculty advisor who may offer support and resources. Students may also consult other external experts.
10 Design Principles for a Green & Thriving City Neighborhood
The Students Reinventing Cities competition aims to harness new models for green and thriving city neighbourhoods, that embrace both:
- the imperative of emissions reduction. Teams are invited to consider operational emissions, embodied emissions and consumption-based emissions
- the critical goal to ensure quality of life for local communities. Teams are invited to consider models such as the ‘15-minute City’ which is increasingly adopted as a valuable urban planning principle.
These two main objectives must be approached in an integrated way. To help with this, the competition defines ten design principles that the teams are invited to consider when developing their project. More information about each of these 10 principles may be found in the rules and regulations document and in the Guidance to design a green and thriving neighbourhood that will be available soon on this website.
1 – Close to home
2 – People-centred mobility and thriving streets
3 – Connected place
4 – A place for everyone
5 – Clean construction
6 – Energy and buildings
7 – Resource management
8 – Green space, climate resilient and nature-based solutions
9 – Sustainable lifestyles
10 – Green economy
The teams are invited to consider all 10 principles while developing their project. However, it is important for teams to focus on the principles that are most appropriate for the site. In the Site Form, each city has indicated specific environmental priorities and objectives for its site.
To register for the competition participating teams must complete a Team Form by 15 April 2021 at 5 pm Coordinated Universal Time ( UTC ).
Content of the Final Projects
The final proposals will include four ( 4 ) different documents which must be submitted by Thursday 27 May 2021 at 5pm Coordinated Universal Time ( UTC ).
1. A completed Team Form ( soon available on this website )
The original team form must be updated to reflect any changes to the composition of the team and provide information on how the team approached collaboration.
2. The Presentation of the Project
The Presentation of the Project is a comprehensive action plan that consists of a maximum of 10 pages ( A4 or US Letter ) made of text as well as illustration such as pictures, drawings and sketches.
This document should present the actions/solutions proposed by the team to regenerate the area according to the 10 Principles and the priorities outlined by the City in the Site Form. It is recommended to include:
- The design concept
- An environmental assessment of the project
- An evaluation of the community benefits
3. Graphic Presentation
Each team shall provide:
- One digital illustration board ( A3 or tabloid format ) to present the project
- Three high-resolution images/drawings ( 1600 x 900 px minimum )
4. Implementation Plan
The Implementation Plan will consist of a maximum of 3 pages ( A4 or US Letter ). It will outline budget, timeframes and phasing, compliance with the planning rules, specific technical challenges, key actors and responsibilities.
All details about submission can be found in the rules and regulations document.
All submissions must be written in English or in the language indicated on the Site Form and must use the local measurement units and currency where applicable.
All documents ( Registration and the Final Project ) must be submitted electronically through the Site Page on this website.
Judging Criteria and Juries
For each site, the final projects will be judged and selected based on the following criteria:
- Quality of the team and of their approach to developing the project.
- Quality of design and relevance of the project to the specifics of the site.
- The proposed solutions to respond to the 10 principles.
- The feasibility of the project.
The final projects will be evaluated by a jury that will be composed of representatives from the City, C40 and may include external experts.
The competition complies with principles of anonymity, transparency, equal treatment, and non-discrimination. The jury will therefore not have access to the following information: the name of the team members and of the Universities they are part of and neither the name of their eventual advisor.
A winner will be selected for each site.
Further information about the requirements of the competition and submission details can be found in the rules and regulations document.
For each site, the winning team will:
- Receive public recognition by both the City and C40 through a public event. This will include the receipt of an official Certificate signed by the Mayor of the City and the Executive Director of C40;
- Receive coverage in a local and global communication campaign ( incl. social media, press release, featuring on this website );
- Be featured in an official video sponsored by C40 that will celebrate their project;
- Be invited to present their project to business leaders, city officials and leading climate organizations in a virtual event;
- Be invited by the City to stay involved in an advisory role regarding future projects in the area.
C40 is a global leadership organization working to deliver the urgent action needed to confront the climate crisis and create a future where everyone can thrive. Our network is made up of nearly 100 of the world’s biggest, most influential cities, representing 700+ million people and one quarter of the global economy. C40 mayors are committed to reducing emissions in line with the highest ambition of the Paris Agreement, increasing resilience, cleaning the air we breathe and tackling inequality.
- Students Reinventing CitiesC40 Cities, a global network of cities committed to bold climate action, has launched a pioneering competition to offer students and universities from across the globe a platform to share their vision for green and thriving neighborhoods through ideas, innovations and solutions. https://www.c40reinventingcities.org/en/students/