Thematic Pillars


  1. Integrated Sustainable Development Strategy

Measures, actions and policies that promote the integration of established international processes and standards of sustainability into organisational structures, management and decision-making practices, as well as the process of formulating the implementation and evaluation of the Local Government Organisation’s policy.

  • Policy & Planning

E.g. drawing up Strategic and Operational Planning for the integration of projects into the new NSRF, the main criterion being the 17 UN goals

  • Development Model

E.g. drawing up a comprehensive plan for the maturity, study and integration of projects (Sustainable Urban Development Business Plans, Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans, etc.) 

  1. Responsible Operation

Measures, actions and policies that promote new standards of organisation and management with the aim of transitioning to Sustainable Development. 

  • Standards for the organisation of services & management systems

E.g. standardisation and certification of the operating procedures of Local Government Organisations to promote transparency, combat maladministration and to measure results

  • Actions to change employee mindset

E.g. seminars and retraining aimed at familiarisation with the 17 goals and ultimately increasing efficiency, etc.

  • Internal Audit 
  1. Smart Cities

Measures, actions and policies that promote the utilisation of digital technologies, urban infrastructure and management systems for more efficient and sustainable management of resources.

  • Implementing smart solutions

E.g. infrastructure, urban transport networks, upgraded water and waste management facilities, lighting, energy upgrading of public buildings, information provision, processes for digital participation in decision-making, voting, management of civil protection issues and emergency situations

  • Participatory & accessible service and information systems for citizens

E.g. “Citizens’ Helpline” through electronic means, smart phones and two-way communication, electronic payments, electronic document distribution and communication with the citizen

  • Open data sources policy

E.g. OCR applications for document recognition, GIS data dissemination for infrastructures and superstructures

  1. Fighting Corruption / Promoting Transparency

Measures, actions and policies that develop and implement procedures to promote transparency and fight against corruption in all matters pertaining to the operation of Local Government Organisations and their Legal Persons.

  • Administration commitment & development of a culture of transparency

E.g. public events utilising the Solidarity of residents/citizens, forming a “social transparency pact” with citizens and local businesses to establish a “Local Suppliers Register”, implementing standardised operating procedures in financial services with regular internal audits

  • Transparency in decision making

E.g. utilisation of technological means for the publication of all administrative and financial data of Local Government Organisations, participatory budgeting procedures, live broadcasts of City and Regional Council meetings etc.

  • Project tendering / public contract procedures

E.g. standardisation of procurement procedures, etc.

  • Employee education & training
  1. Dialogue with Stakeholders – Citizen Participation

Measures, actions and policies that promote systematic practices of communication and dialogue of Local Government Organisations with all stakeholders, regularly publishing the results of the dialogue and integrating it into the strategy and objectives of useful proposals for Sustainable Development and Social Responsibility.

  • Participatory Procedures

E.g. participatory budgeting, collaborating with institutions to plan specific actions and implementation of programmes, online consultations, public discussions in neighbourhoods or local communities, etc.)

  • Actions to inform citizens and encourage interaction with modern communication methods

E.g. utilising social media for two-way and direct communication with citizens, utilising facilities of Local Government Organisations for targeted information events with specific audiences (Open Care Centres for the Elderly, Children’s Nurseries, Schools)

  1. Service provision for the citizen

Measures, actions and policies that provide user-friendly, fast and ‘remote’ services to citizens and help strengthen the citizen’s confidence in local authorities.

  • Innovative and upgraded services

E.g. open days, electronic payments via e-banking, publishing steps/documentation of key processes and services for citizens and businesses, digitising services, reaching citizens in isolated/rural areas (e.g. mobile Citizen Service Centres, self-service points)

  • Reaching and serving vulnerable social groups

E.g. telemedicine, free medical examinations and information events in collaboration with Medical Associations and Occupational Physicians

  • Evaluation of service performance by citizens, suppliers and businesses

E.g. use of ISO total quality and evaluation systems, electronic hardware for on-site evaluation of services, follow-up with citizens via sms after a transaction with the Municipality

  1. Performance Measurement

Measures, actions and policies that promote the performance measurement of Local Government Organisations based on specific indicators, to identify strengths and weaknesses, and set priorities in relation to the Global Sustainable Development Goals.

  • Environmental, Social & Economic Indicators for an Integrated Approach to local policy making

E.g. indicators of an increase in recyclable materials, indicators of an increase in social services beneficiaries, indicators of a decrease in contributory fees for vulnerable groups

  • Evaluation & degree of achievement of goals
  • Establish measurable goals in collaboration with local institutions
  • Sustainable Development Goals Report/Agenda 2030 – City Global Goals Report


  1. Responsible Public Procurement

Measures, actions and policies that promote the targeted use of public resources and financial strength to achieve social and environmental goals and promote innovation.

  • Incorporation of sustainable and innovative criteria and technical specifications into tender notifications for procurement and services (e.g. green supplies)
  • Checking the Sustainable Development objectives of collaborating suppliers
  1. Supporting Local Markets/Businesses – Local Market

Measures, actions and policies that utilise local businesses and markets and enhance their economic and social role.

  • Programmes to promote local businesses

E.g. collaborating with business associations for local market advertising, festive lighting and utilisation of folk music bands to create a good atmosphere in the market

  • Information campaigns on the local market aimed towards citizens
  • Supplies from local markets

E.g. establishing a register of local suppliers and utilising proximity, strengthening and supporting social structures

  • Regeneration of local market

E.g. Open Mall, Integrated Sustainable Urban Development Strategy

  • Collaboration with Business Associations
  • Training for the adoption of responsible entrepreneurship
  1. Financing & Investments

Measures, actions and policies that promote the search for and utilisation of modern and innovative financial instruments.

  • initiatives for a sustainable and circular economy
  • access to investments through national and international financial means
  • encouraging collaboration between local businesses and local authorities
  • alternative financing practices, such as crowd-funding
  1. Developing the agricultural/primary sector

Measures, actions and policies that promote the interconnection of the primary sector with the rest of the local economy to create jobs, boost entrepreneurship and protect the natural environment.

  • Supporting the production of local products

E.g. initiatives of Local Government Organisations to promote local products at national and international fairs

  • Information programmes for sustainable agricultural farms

E.g. utilising agribusinesses to provide reliable information for young farmers, highlighting best practices for sustainable farming

  • Promoting a spirit of collaborative schemes and teams of producers


  1. Addressing Climate Change

Measures, actions and policies that promote the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions, greenhouse gases and addressing climate change.

  • Policies on protecting the climate and mitigation measures in various areas

E.g. sustainable urban planning, Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans, renewable energy utilisation, energy upgrades

  • Information campaigns & measures to raise awareness and change mindset
  1. Adaptation to climate change & urban resilience

Measures, actions and policies to promote addressing climate change and the adaptation of cities to new climatic conditions.

  • Development of an urban resilience strategy
  • Development of action plans and practical tools to protect citizens from the effects of climate change

E.g. development of modern operational Civil Protection Centres, collaboration with volunteer rescuers and other relevant NGOs

  • Measures to inform citizens and raise awareness
  1. Biodiversity & Green Spaces

Measures, actions and policies to address the direct and indirect impacts on biodiversity in protected and non-protected areas, as well as in areas with a high biodiversity value.

  • Restoration of areas with a high biodiversity value
  • Landscape regeneration
  • Creation of green spaces

E.g. “pocket” parks, upgrading existing public areas, reforestation

  1. Energy

Measures, actions and policies for the reduction of the energy footprint of cities, the transition to renewable energy sources and the extension of the scope of energy saving actions. 

  • Implementation of sustainable energy solutions, from heating and cooling to energy generation

E.g. utilisation of public land for wind farms with mutual benefits for local communities, central heating systems (district heating) with modern methods

  • Ensuring the energy security of citizens

E.g. affordable energy, the supply matches the demand

  • Energy communities
  • Actions to combat energy poverty 
  1. Food

Measures, actions and policies that promote the rational management of food and reduce the footprint of the production process on the environment and public health.

  • Promotion of sustainable agriculture in local food production
  • Promotion of urban agriculture for better nutrition and food security

E.g. suburban vegetable gardens on public land for vulnerable groups and young farmers

  • Practices for sustainable trade
  • Practices to reduce food waste

E.g. “food waste” programmes in collaboration with local retail and catering companies

  1. Infrastructure, Buildings & Structures

Measures, actions and policies for the transition towards material circularity and the utilisation of local sources of renewable materials, as well as low carbon-smart solutions and nature-based solutions, with the aim of reducing operational, environmental and economic costs of construction.

  • Architectural design & building according to the principles of Sustainable Development

E.g. design and construction of bio-climatic, more energy-efficient buildings

  • Innovative sustainable solutions for buildings and infrastructure

E.g. District heating and district cooling or solutions for green infrastructure

  1. Mobility & Transport

Measures, actions and policies that promote the new philosophy in urban transport with an emphasis on people, vulnerable social groups and public transport.

  • New mobility solutions in the context of technological and social innovation
  • Adoption of integrated approaches to sustainable urban mobility

E.g. Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan studies and implementation of targeted interventions for sustainable mobility

  • Promotion of non-motorised transport

E.g. green mixed-use neighbourhoods, the transition to electric and mass mobility, upgrading and promoting public transport in collaboration with relevant businesses

  1. Water

Measures, actions and policies that promote the conservation, protection and rationalisation of the use of water resources managed by Local Government Organisations.

  • Integrated urban water management and sound governance in the water sector

E.g. changing the pricing from the socially unjust and environmentally damaging horizontal fixed-price to ‘increasing tiered pricing’, reducing non-invoiced water, utilising non-potable water for the irrigation of public parks and cleaning

  • Adaptation of urban water systems in response to climate change and other global changes
  1. Waste & Circular Economy

Measures, actions and policies that promote rational waste management with the least possible footprint on the environment and water resources.

  • Integrated waste management programmes
  • Waste reduction through the use of technological innovation
  • Informing citizens and encouraging participation in recycling – waste management activities

E.g. increasing recycling at the source with extensive campaigns and programmes for the increase of recycling streams, recycling biodegradable household waste

  • Transition to a circular economy through the implementation of measures

E.g. lifecycle costing, waste reuse, use of sustainable public procurement criteria

  1. Spatial Planning & Urban Environment

Measures, actions and policies that promote the upgrading of the urban environment with due regard for social needs, the citizen’s rights and aimed towards sustainability and balanced development.

  • Integrated viable and sustainable policies & interventions to improve the structure and functioning of cities

E.g. creation of suitable conditions for the construction of green buildings, energy upgrades of public buildings, regeneration and creation of bio-climatic parks, Sustainable Urban Development actions, Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan, etc.


  1. Public Health / Healthy Cities

Measures, actions and policies that promote the improvement of the natural and anthropogenic environment and provide access to healthcare, reducing social inequalities.

  • Promoting health & sustainable development policies & actions
  • Actions to meet basic Health & Hygiene needs
  • Preventive healthcare programmes

E.g. information events by an occupational physician at Open Care Centres for the Elderly, with free measurements and examinations in collaboration with medical associations, preventive examinations of the staff of Local Government Organisations

  • Health promotion programmes

E.g. programmes on traffic education & safe transportation (bicycles, skates, electrically-powered transport), sexual health programmes, safe internet use and addiction prevention programmes

  • Training programmes for Municipal employees and volunteers
  • Actions to improve the working environment & working conditions
  1. Culture & Cultural Heritage

Measures, actions and policies that utilise culture to achieve Sustainable Development goals. Our culture and our shared heritage can be considered a “fourth pillar” of sustainability, capable of promoting discussions about our urban future.

  • Initiatives & actions in the field of culture & sustainable development
  • Actions to strengthen municipal and regional identity

E.g. highlighting, mapping, and certification by UNESCO of local customs with a keen interest in the ‘Momoeria of Kozani’ model

  • Development of local social economies

E.g. enhancing the traditional craftsmanship-cottage industry and utilising them for job creation and stimulating tourism, while preserving cultural heritage

  • Actions to involve different groups of citizens and their traditions in developing a common vision for a sustainable city
  1. Social Inclusion & Equal Access

Measures, actions and policies that ensure equal opportunities and rights for all citizens, promote social inclusion and eliminate social, racial or other discrimination.

  • Actions & programmes to ensure social cohesion

E.g. programmes to address extreme poverty and to empower vulnerable social groups, the unemployed and people with disabilities, social integration policies for refugees and immigrants, structures to address domestic violence, actions and initiatives by Community Centres, families facing functional issues

  • Actions to eliminate discrimination and promote gender equality & equality of vulnerable groups
  • Bridging the digital divide
    • programmes to eliminate ‘digital illiteracy’ especially in people of an older age (e.g. training programmes, digital skills competitions, etc.)
    • providing free public access to digital tools and equipment [free public WiFi, public spaces (e.g. libraries, cultural centres, Citizen Service Centres) with free computers for citizens, etc.]
  1. Training – Boosting employment

Measures, actions and policies that promote the education and training of citizens with a view to addressing unemployment and promoting employment.

  • Training and education programmes

E.g. Lifelong Learning programmes from the competent Departments – usually Social Welfare

  • Training programmes for the reintegration of the unemployed into the labour market

E.g. programme contracts with local University Institutions to register the needs of local businesses in the workforce, while mapping available human resources, collaborating with the Organisation of Employment of the Workforce to select the long-term unemployed, to provide them with two-month employment contracts)

  • Community service programmes
  • Information programmes for young people
  • Practical training programmes

E.g. offering practical training positions from Local and Regional Authorities, mediation for practical training in local businesses, collaborating with local KEK / IEK / TEI / AEI training and education institutes, etc.

  • Programmes for addressing school drop-out (children who do not attend school or drop out of school early)
  1. Volunteering

Measures, actions and policies that promote the development of volunteer activities through the non-profit participation of citizens in actions of a social/environmental nature aimed at promoting Sustainable Development and Social Responsibility.

  • Information and awareness programmes
  • Actions to raise awareness and mobilise young people
  • Development of actions at a local level

E.g. The “adoption” of vacant public spaces and small parks by volunteer groups and social institutions for maintenance and beautification interventions with materials provided by Local Government Organisations

In action

Collaborating with other Institutions

Measures, actions and policies that promote the development of multi-stakeholder collaborations and partnerships, with the aim of improving quality of life and addressing urban challenges through the implementation of integrated management proposals and efficient use of the urban environment, informing and raising public awareness, networking, collaboration and knowledge exchange.

E.g. Inter-municipal / Interdisciplinary partnerships, Innovative actions in partnership with the Private and Public Sector, Actions between Local Government and Civil Society, Collaboration with Academic Institutions.

Bravo 2018

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