Neighbourhood Demonstrators (N-DEMO)

Challenge Platform: Making Transitions Happen

Project Start Date: 07/2011

Lead partner: Institute for Sustainability, UK

Project type: Innovation project – Develops and brings to market climate-relevant knowledge, products and services

Project lead: Patricia Chaput, Institute for Sustainability


This project involves 6 partners in 2 European countries:


By 2050, 80% of the world population is expected to be living in urban areas. Neighbourhood Demonstrators (N-DEMO) starts with the premise that to deliver sustainable cities we need large scale and systemic innovation. Through co-ordinated planning and investment we will realise the efficiencies required to ensure widespread adoption. N-DEMO allows an opportunity for innovations to be demonstrated in real world test-beds while dealing with two main challenges: a lack of tools to support integrated planning and investment decisions and the need for business and financial models that enable partners to pool their interests and deliver different, connected elements in an efficient way. N-DEMO is applying new approaches to delivering sustainability in the neighbourhood, which can be replicated at city scale.

The climate change issue

Cities offer many of the biggest challenges and opportunities in dealing with climate change issues, exacerbated by shrinking budgets, fragmented governance and often lack of clear leadership.

As complex systems of interrelated systems, cities require multiple parties to work together in new ways in order to implement sustainable solutions.

The Project Solution

Neighbourhood Demonstrators (N-DEMO) provides several urban test-beds in London and Berlin to demonstrate what can be achieved at a neighbourhood scale. Lessons learned from the project are being captured and shared as a route to scaling up to city level interventions focussing on the built environment, infrastructure, and mobility. N-DEMO project activity includes trials of new governance structures, decision support tools and testing of new technical and operational solutions. The project team continually seeks ways to optimise end-user involvement, trial new methods of engagement and to capture feedback in order to learn how to effectively address key challenges of sustainable cities in a replicable way.

The role of Climate-KIC

Climate-KIC has enabled N-DEMO to form invaluable partnerships and relationships across Europe with various stakeholders and other environmental projects with shared goals. N-DEMO has been able to identify best practices from these projects, and has benefitted from the use and development of tools created by them. Through Climate-KIC, N-DEMO has been able to share learning opportunities with these projects, making their own initiative more effective.