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Theme and Programme

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A city is a state – of mind, of taste, of opportunity. A city is a marketplace – where ideas are traded, opinions clash and eternal conflict may produce eternal truths.

How can communities become co-creators of green, inclusive and just cities in urban contexts?

12th-19th April 2024, Valletta, Malta

In an era of complex urban challenges affecting environmental and social wellbeing, the very same cities can become the hubs of just and sustainable communities.

A place where people with diverging experiences, ideas, and perspectives can work together to create innovative partnerships between entrepreneurs, public institutions and civil society. Cities are spaces that can open doors to explore, discover and test ways towards better, healthier lives for those living in them.

From the 15th until the 19th of April 2024, the SciCultureD’s third intensive course invites you to explore this theme in the context of a post-colonial country such as Malta, with the cultural and built heritage that it entails. Apply to our grant opportunities to join the wave of urban change-makers!


Urban jungles or hubs?

Nowadays many people live surrounded by the hustle and bustle of cities. In fact, in 2021 over 73% of the European population was living in a city, a town or suburb – raising the question of why so many of us choose to live somewhere considered at times stressful, unsafe and polluted.

 It is evident that the very same cities offer unique opportunities for their dwellers, for example acting as teeming hubs of communities: places where a diversity of cultures and voices find the space to sprout and to collaborate.

The Programme

Through the collaboration, SciCultureD will deliver an intensive 5-day-long course in Valletta, Malta between the 15th and 19th of April 2024 under the theme “How can communities become the co-creators of just and greener cities in urban context?”. The participants will be immersed in a transdisciplinary experience – including co-creation and art-based workshops, field visits and meetings with local stakeholders, supported by in-house and international experts in arts, entrepreneurship, pedagogy, design thinking and science communication.

Through the SciCultureD intense intensive course activities, participants will be trained to develop their resilience and multicultural understanding while diversifying their skill set in project management, transdisciplinary team working, co-creation, system thinking. All while fostering civic participation and responsible innovation to drive positive societal change.


MONDAY 15TH – morning

The city as a nexus of identity formation

Valletta citizens, proudly calling themselves il-Beltin, are locally known to overtly express fondness of their city. Political theorist John Schaar contends that “city patriotism” consists of devotion to a human and social artefact that embodies love of home and nurture. Close to the theme of this course – to foster a common sense for caring for today’s and tomorrow’s cities – this presentation, after scrutinizing Valletta’s colonial memorial landscape and other exploitations, makes the case for a challenging sense of belonging to the dwellers’ common memory and identity. Moreover, the recently constituted Residenti Beltin party is fighting for their city’s “survival” in the face of tourist-related commercial abuse.

Led by Charles Xuereb, lecturer and author of “France in the Maltese Collective Memory” and “Decolonising the Maltese mind, in search of identity”.

MONDAY 15TH – afternoon

We shape cities, and cities shape us: a workshop on urban street transformation and travel behaviour

This engaging workshop will centre around the theme of urban street transformation and its impact on travel behaviour. The session will kick off with a presentation delving into the local context and shedding light on critical issues related to mobility, urban street design and travel behaviour. This will be followed by an interactive workshop activity based on the personas approach. In this creative exercise, participants will get the chance to envision how an urban transformation and co-creation activities can make everyday people feel relaxed, safe, efficient, independent and normal in their urban environment.

Led by Karyn Scerri, PhD and Researcher at the Institute for Climate Change and Sustainable Development at the University of Malta.

MONDAY 15TH – afternoon

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Reclaiming Public Space

The team of Dawra Madwarna will be giving an Introduction of the initiative and the Placemaking event they held in Isla (Malta). They will then move on to divide the participants into groups and have an interactive workshop of what it takes to have a great space or place.


Valletta Design Cluster

Funded in 2018 as a legacy of Valletta’s European Capital of Culture, the VDC is a culture and art centre: it works as a community space for cultural and creative practices focussing on design, entrepreneurship and social impact. It provides cutting-edge facilities as well as training and networking opportunities.

Contact us

If you have any questions or doubts, you can reach us out by sending an email to