3 innovative initiatives to advance justice in your city

Sustainable Just Cities
Blog on Sustainable Just Cities
3 min readOct 14, 2021


This blog post presents the innovative initiatives proposed by Urban Arena #4 participants. Get inspired by these ideas focusing on equitable power structures, transformative art, and empowering participation!

Power Literacy Lab

What? Power is not always explicit and Power Literacy Lab initiative recognizes this shortcoming as preventing mobilisation in the sustainability sphere. The initiative aims to help people to talk about power in an accessible language and overcome issues of injustice.

How? The labs can be arranged in diverse locations as pop-ups across the city. In order to make the labs accessible, different formats are used (discussions, workshops etc.) and they are adapted to the place and audience. The labs are framed with words wider and more concrete than power itself. As an outcome, a manifesto about the next steps will be prepared after each lab. This will be presented to policy-makers to address the issues collectively.

Who? The initiative should be run by a civil society organization who is working closely with the citizens, in partnership with the City.


What? CLANDESIGN is a Collaborative, Living, Artistic Notions Dreaming Element of Sustainability Innovation and Great Nowadays. The initiative suggests that art and artistic methods can support justice in sustainable cities. These methods provide an accessible and fun alternative to verbal consultations.

How? The initiative suggests several art-based approaches for planning processes: adding non-verbal consultation, involving artists for workshops as imagination facilitators and dream catchers, encouraging citizens to use art to express their ideas for future neighbourhoods, and using temporary artistic installations to provoke discussions. The outcome of the planning process using the CLANDESIGN -methods can be presented as a documentary and pitched to local governments.

Who? Local governments in cooperation with artists and citizens

Inclusive Participatory Budgeting

What? Participatory budgeting can be used as a tool for social inclusion and empowerment in municipalities. This initiative recognises both the importance of and potential for social inclusion in participatory budgeting processes. It seeks to increase awareness of the process with a focus on marginalised groups.

How? In participatory budgeting, residents of a city or neighbourhood can decide what projects they want to develop with the given budget. The decision is made using democratic voting open to all residents, not only citizens. Support is provided to the residents and the communities. Special attention is paid to the accessibility of the process for people with disabilities. Participatory budgeting will be used as a tool to include people at the very beginning of city-making and allow them to make a concrete change in their surroundings.

Who? Local governments in cooperation with civil society organizations and residents