Press release

Oulu and Sant Boi de Llobregat selected first Co-Chairs of the Mayors Digital Assembly

29 March 2023

Seppo Määttä, Mayor of Oulu and Mayor Lluisa Moret, Mayor of Sant Boi de Llobregat have been selected Co-Chairs of the Mayors Digital Assembly, for a term of two years. The Co-Chairs will be the voice of all EU Mayors on the Board of the Living-in.EU movement.

The Mayors’ Digital Assembly is the political advisory body which provides strategic orientation to the Living-in.EU movement. An annual event will be the occasion for mayors to debate the political priorities of the movement and to tackle a range of interconnected challenges – urban mobility, energy efficiency, and digital public services – while ensuring environmental sustainability in line with the European Green Deal. The event will also help define several strategic coordinated actions for the next 2-year mandate.

Mayor Seppo Määttä, said: “In Digital Oulu we have learned that urban digital transformation is a long-term, complex, and cross-functional process, which challenges the strategic leadership and political decision making. A city can act as a platform for digital transformation in various roles, such as policy maker, ecosystem leader or project partner. As a city, we are well placed to make a positive impact in many different ways – finding the best option often reflects the history, vision, goals, and resources of a city. The Mayor’s Digital Assembly offers an excellent opportunity to exchange with peers about different views, and learn how other European cities have discovered success as a platform for the digital transformation.”

Oulu was the first city to sign the Join, Boost and Sustain declaration, and has acted as an Ambassador for the movement since. Home to the Nokia Corporation since the 1970s, Oulu was the first city in the world to offer an open Wi-Fi network. Oulu is a world leader in developing digital technologies and solutions. Every day, approximately three billion people use mobile technologies developed in Oulu. As such, the city is a top-level European reference for Digital Health, a Horizon Europe Lighthouse City, and an active member of Eurocities.

Mayor Lluisa Moret, said: “Sant Boi de Llobregat is highly committed to digital transformation to tackle interconnected urban challenges. As a medium-sized European city, a political priority is to work towards digital inclusion, including the fight against the gender digital divide. For this reason, co-chairing the Mayors Digital Assembly is an excellent opportunity to ensure that the digital transition roadmap leaves no one behind.”

As a smart city, Sant Boi de Llobregat has an intelligent communications network throughout the city, to, for example, limit the circulation of polluting vehicles around the living area, and a system of Smart traffic lights to manage traffic efficiently. In addition, the city has adopted a data- driven approach to its public administration, creating a Data Office where citizens can access easy datasets to understand data such as the relative cadastral income of homes in different areas, or the average educational or income level of inhabitants.

One of the first steps of the two Co-Chair cities will be to develop a short concept note to outline the two priority areas that have been identified so far. These are: digital inclusion/digital cohesion/bridging the digital divide (Sant Boi) and the city as a platform (Oulu). These priorities will be presented as the two principal tracks of the Mayors Digital Assembly, planned for June.


Notes for editors

  1. Living-in.EU is the movement of EU cities, regions and member states on digital transformation. It is a multi-level governance cooperation platform supporting cities and communities to accelerate in their digital transformation in the European way – ensuring technological leadership while respecting European values, diversity and digital rights. Find out more here: Living-in.EU
  2. The first Mayors’ Digital Assembly of the Living-in.EU movement will be organised on 13 June 2023, in the framework of the biggest event for cities this year – the Brussels Urban Summit, taking place from 12-15 June 2023. The Mayors’ Digital Assembly will be organised by Eurocities on behalf of the Living-in.EU movement. More information about the Brussels Urban Summit can be found here:
  3. The two co-chairs were selected following an open call among all city signatories to the Join, Boost, Sustain declaration, which can be found here:
  4. Eurocities wants to make cities places where everyone can enjoy a good quality of life, is able to move around safely, access quality and inclusive public services and benefit from a healthy environment. We do this by networking more than 200 larger European cities, which together represent some 130 million people across 38 countries, and by gathering evidence of how policy making impacts on people to inspire other cities and EU decision makers.
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Alex Godson Eurocities Writer