Funded by: Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei
January 2019 / December 2021

Cities in the Modern Age (CitAge)

Although strictly related to many emission sources, urbanisation also provide a favourable context for the adoption of new low carbon technologies in key sectors such as transport, construction and infrastructures. Electric vehicles, low-energy buildings, green infrastructure, ecosystem restoration, sustainable land-use and urban planning, and reduced food wastage are some of the main examples of the large range of options and policy solutions available to make urban transition feasible.

In order to provide knowledge-based policy advice, it is crucial to understand the factors driving the energy and environmental performance of modern cities, and to identify potential trade-offs and synergies among options and policy actions.
The Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) identifies cities and urban areas as one of the four critical global systems that can accelerate and upscale climate action. Cities will be the starting point for behavioural, technological and institutional experiments in the direction of greater sustainability and resilience.
In this perspective, moving from the experience of previous FEEM’s projects such Re-Cities and Ecovalue, CitAge aims to provide new evidences and to contribute to the policy debate on the role of cities in the current transition through more sustainable development models.

Main Results and Outputs
  • Urban spatial structure, mobility and energy transition
    The analysis of the relationship between urban form and energy consumption is a key step to inform policies and to plan the construction of new energy efficient city districts. The research explores opportunities and challenges provided by the urban morphology and transportation to reduce energy consumption and to shift the energy mix towards green energy.
  • Energy density in EU cities
    As of today, the energy demand of cities accounts for almost 70% of the total, and it is estimated to increase by 26% by 2030. Reducing energy use and increasing the share of renewable energy is essential to reduce carbon intensity. The research is devoted to the construction of downscaled models to analyse energy demand scenarios within EU cities.

The main results of the research project will be discussed during a series of events organized during the year.

Regional Studies Association conference in Santiago de Compostela (ES) – oral presentation: Energy demand projections in European cities using downscaled population scenarios
Associazione Italiana di Economia Agraria e Applicata in Pistoia (IT) | Oral presentation - Willingness to pay for land-use based climate adaptation: the case of garda lake
Side Event FEEM@IUAV in the occasion of the AESOP (Association of European Schools of Planning) conference - Planning for Transition, Venice (IT)
Project team
Project leader
Guastella Gianni
Senior Research Associate Read more


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