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Urban Imaginaries

Partnering with UNDP to unleash city innovation across Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Reimagining city life

CPI is working with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to co-design and implement the Urban Imaginaries programme. A new ten-month initiative, Urban Imaginaries is a learning journey devised to support cities across Eastern Europe and Central Asia to develop solutions to their most pressing urban challenges.

The Urban Imaginaries programme

Urban Imaginaries is designed to promote city innovation and will strengthen the innovation capabilities of mayors and city leaders in secondary cities across Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine, and Azerbaijan. In doing so, city governments will gain the skills needed to solve complex urban challenges and enable sustainable development across the region. 

Urban Imaginaries aims to transform secondary cities into innovation hubs by training city government teams and working with them to launch new initiatives that reimagine or reinvent key aspects of local living. Cities will receive training and exposure to complexity-informed approaches and will be supported to design place-based solutions across a wide range of issues including economic development, tourism and agriculture.




public officials, including mayors and deputy mayors



About UNDP and the Mayors for Economic Growth initiative

Urban Imaginaries is part of the Mayors for Economic Growth (M4EG) Facility, an EU funded programme that seeks to enable vibrant communities, strengthen local economies and establish sustainable and innovation driven networks for learning and change.

What cities have been learning

Midway through the programme, cities and municipalities gathered to reflect on their learning. Watch the video to find out about how they've been reimagining their cities and towns.

Find out more

How do we support city innovation?

Develop localised solutions

Support cities to design place-based solutions through training in design thinking and deep listening techniques.

Exposure to complexity-informed approaches

Introduce cities to new approaches, such as sensemaking, experimentation, human learning systems and futures and foresight.

Learn together

Create spaces and opportunities for peer to peer collaboration, collective reflection and knowledge sharing.

Inclusive growth

Ensure initiatives are aimed at building inclusive growth for all and promoting sustainable development.


"We greatly enjoyed working alongside the CPI team. With their rigour and warmth, we successfully co-created a human-centered design learning journey called Urban Imaginaries for city teams in Armenia, Georgia and Moldova (under the EU funded Mayors for Economic Growth). All city teams saw their grant design and implementation improved and positive effects and scalability of the learning, including securing additional funding. Change in local bureaucracies is no quick fix and ultimately depends on the human tissue of trust and safe spaces to experiment and learn. People change systems, the CPI team understood that and showed much adaptability and relevance to that end."

Tina Saeteraas Stoum, Regional Orchestrator, UNDP

Get in touch

Want to find out more about how we're helping cities get future ready? Get in touch and let’s have a conversation about how we can work together.

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