Main impact of Triangulum in Leipzig
During the duration of the Triangulum project and the resulting knowledge exchange with the three Lighthouse Cities, it became clear that Leipzig needs to reorganise its internal working structures regarding Smart City and digitization issues. Starting in spring 2018, a dialogue has been initiated between the Department for General Services, the Department for Economic Affairs and Employment, the Mayor’s Office and the Triangulum team to develop a new administrative structure for digitization issues within the City of Leipzig. As a result, a “Digital City Unit” was installed in the Department for Economy and Labour in April 2019, which was then renamed to “the Department for Economy, Labour and Digital Affairs” accordingly.
The “Digital City Unit” started its work in April 2019. An entire team now works on developing guidelines, drafting projects, creating different committees and networks within and outside the municipality as well as other topics.
The new Digital City Unit is:
- A competence centre for digitization within and for the city administration as well as external actors such as enterprises, civil society and science,
- responsible for the development and implementation of innovation projects with the help of municipal budget but also financed by the EU and national funding (incl. development of funding proposal and grant management),
- an internal service provider for the city administration offering advice and support regarding funding opportunities and grant management,
- representing the City of Leipzig on national and international events and networks (e.g. German Smart City Network, EIP-SCC events),
- an interface function between the municipality and its subsidiaries (public utilities and other enterprises).
The participation process with its three different formats established within Triangulum (Future Forum, Future Expert Lab and local citizen engagement) contributed strongly to the acceptance and the understanding of smart city processes within the City of Leipzig. Furthermore, the context of these events was used to seek support from relevant stakeholders such as the city’s utilities company for some of the project ideas. It is planned to continue the Future Forum after the Triangulum project has finished.
The City of Leipzig is on its way to becoming a Smart City. The Triangulum project had a very relevant impact on the propulsion of the topic within the city’s municipality and among Leipzig’s citizens. Along the way and with the help of an extensive participation process, relevant stakeholders from industry and science could be involved in the development of new solutions, which form the basis of Leipzig’s implementation strategy. The approval of two new projects (EfficienCE and SPARCS) not only offers the financial support needed for the implementation of the planned activities but also constitutes a valuable measure to secure and intensify the cooperation between the City of Leipzig, its public utilities, local universities and SME’s and, most importantly, to further broaden and deepen the European exchange and replication of cities shaping the digital transformation.