TUC Urban Lab Profile: Barrio 20, Buenos Aires, Argentina

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After more than two years in operation, the challenges and key achievements of the TUC Urban Lab established in Barrio 20 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, provide valuable lessons for sustaining ongoing activities, accelerating broader transformations and guiding similar efforts elsewhere:

  1. INTEGRATING CLIMATE ACTION WITH EXISTING PARTICIPATORY PROCESSES: The UL Barrio 20 took off relatively fast by capitalizing on pre-existing structures and political buy-in, fostering collaboration and maintaining flexibility, especially in the face of differing perspectives. Leveraging the established participatory governance framework of the ongoing PIRU facilitated the introduction of a climate lens.
  2. SHIFTING MINDSETS AND GOVERNANCE APPROACHES: The transformative potential of integrating climate action and urban development, particularly in informal settlements like Barrio 20, hinges on localizing the climate agenda and co-creating an understanding rooted in local priorities. Shifting climate change-related mindsets and governance approaches requires acknowledging and bridging different knowledge types and experiences, and fostering an awareness around benefits that resonate with the community.
  3. SUSTAINING AND SCALING TRANSFORMATIVE PROCESSES AND OUTCOMES: Efforts to initiate, sustain and scale transformation must recognize and address the multifaceted and burdensome nature of participation, cultivate new capacities and leaderships and promote policy reforms with systemic impact. Sharing successes within and beyond Barrio 20 is vital, as is securing financial compensation for the community and navigating administrative turnovers to ensure the long-term sustainability of these initiatives.