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Home > Innovate2030 – Digital solutions for climate smart cities

Innovate2030 – Digital solutions for climate smart cities

With the launch of the Innovate2030 challenge at the COP26, the BMZ and its partners from the UNFCCC and the European Commission bring together innovators from all around the world for a global innovation program.

In 2023 the world population will cross the threshold of eight billion people. By the middle of the century, nine billion people will populate the earth. Already today, the majority live in cities, a trend that will continue to grow. Even though cities and metropolitan areas are economic powerhouses. However, they are also responsible for about 70 percent of global carbon emissions and over 60 percent of resource consumption. Rapid urbanization is leading to overburdened infrastructures, air pollution and unplanned urban sprawl. Particular developing countries are becoming a hotspot for these negative trends.

Developing our cities and communities and making them inclusive, safe, resilient, digital and sustainable is therefore one of the biggest challenges but also opportunities. Digital innovations, such as artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain are proving unprecedented opportunities to tackle these. The ability to reach the Paris Climate Agreement goals rests on many factors, but much depends on what happens in cities.

This is the reason that this year’s Innovate2030 program initialized with BMZ digilab and in collaboration with the Make-IT Alliance, the European Commission and the UNFCCC is focusing on SDG11: “Sustainable Cities and Communities”.





Factors such as climate change and increasing urbanization require the development of new concepts to ensure a decent and sustainable living environment, while digital innovations offer unprecedented opportunities to address these challenges.

Our key questions

How can we address climate change and increase citizen engagement by strengthening sustainable cities and communities

What technologies and digital solutions can help drive these sustainability efforts? 

The challenge is based on a solution-oriented approach to climate innovation in the context of sustainable cities and communities. The key to this is to identify what digital technologies in the context of urban development must and can contribute to achieving climate and development goals.

The timeline

To find out more or submit your idea, please find all relevant information here: