24 November 2021

Winner of the Transformative Action Award 2021 is revealed

The citizen-centred cooperative La Titaranya SCCL was crowned the Transformative Action of 2021 this week at a virtual ceremony hosted by the European Committee of the Regions. The organisation impressed the jury with their action, which focuses on the physical and social rehabilitation of a local, degraded neighbourhood in Valls (Spain). Alongside the prestigious trophy and the title of “Transformative Action of the Year 2021,” La Titaranya also received €10,000 to help support further actions.

Gérard Nogués Balsells, Partner at La Titaranya, emphasised the organisation’s excitement and their commitment to building an inclusive, equitable future, saying: “We understand this award as a recognition of the effort of so many people. It is a recognition of all the projects for social and solidarity economy that have been consolidated over the last years in Catalonia and that are showing that there is a way to generate a local economy and a democratic economy outside of capitalism.”

La Titaranya’s mission to ensure affordable housing and dignified living standards for locals emerged as the winning action not only because of its potential to catalyse a socio-cultural, socio-economic and technological transition, but also because of its ability to accelerate local action. This was highlighted by Wolfgang Teubner, Regional Director of ICLEI Europe and Transformative Action Award Jury Member, who expressed: “In order to achieve the goals of the European Green Deal we need local governments and civil society actors on the ground to implement it and to accelerate action. La Titaranya SCCL has convincingly demonstrated that positive transformation can happen when local stakeholders take ownership of creating a sustainable, equitable future.”

The cooperative developed a long-term strategy with direct governance from citizens to generate plans for social housing, premises for organisations, public spaces, a climate shelter, heritage recovery and a local, organic food store. The team tasked with executing and multiplying this work specialises in rehabilitation, construction with an environmental perspective, and feminist urban planning.

This 2021 edition marks the fifth anniversary of the Transformative Action Award, which recognises ongoing or concluded Transformative Actions – inspired by the 15 pathways outlined in the Basque Declaration – that accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement.

The award is organised jointly by ICLEI Europe, the Basque Country and the City of Aalborg (Denmark), with support from the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the European Investment Bank (EIB). This year saw 24 excellent applications from across Europe, which was then narrowed done to three finalists: La Titaranya SCCL, ICLEI Member Nijmegen (the Netherlands), and the City of A Coruña (Spain).

Nijmegen’s ‘Kleurrijk Groen’ initiative caught the jury's eye for leveraging diversity as a tool to create more sustainable communities, while the City of A Coruña was a finalist for constructing a network of urban gardens, which cultivate communal resilience by offering environmental, social and economic opportunities.

To learn more about this year’s winner and finalists, as well as the Sustainable Cities Platform, visit the website here.