The 3rd Local Stakeholder Workshop in Gzira

Gzira 26 February 2024
Co-Implementation and Monitoring of Nature Based Solutions

On the 16th of February 2024, members of the Research Innovation Unit (RIU) on behalf of the Gzira Local Council and the University of Malta (UM), conducted their 3rd local stakeholder meeting of the European Commission Horizon 2020 JUSTNature project.

The meeting was held at the Gzira Parish Hall, hosting at least ten stakeholders. These consisted of residents, academics, members from the Environment Resources Authority (ERA), Stella Maris College and the Eastern Regional Council.

During the workshop's first session, the stakeholders were briefed about the aims and objectives of the JUSTNature Project. The concepts of co-creation were emphasized, which were also used in the 1st Local Stakeholder workshop where participants identified the challenges in our CiPeL. The co-design process used during the 2nd Local Stakeholder workshop was also discussed, where participants talked about the intervention area and shared their ideas about what they would like to see implemented.

Fabian Borg, Head of RIU showcased his latest work. He presented a longitudinal 2019 vs 2023 scientific visual data comparison of the exponential rise in heat stress on Malta due to the impact of Climate Change and stressed the importance of adopting Nature Based Solutions, within the dense urban zones. Additionally he presented a new visual representations of the proposed nature-based solution for Sliema Road intervention. Additionally, our partners Mohamed Soliman Daoud and Dr. Edward Duca shared their efforts towards establishing a CiPeL in Stella Maris College, Gzira. They discussed how they are building capacity, sharing knowledge and engaging students in various activities.

The second session focused on the importance of monitoring and evaluating the progress of our interventions. We explained that with the use of sensors, we would be monitoring the environmental impact of the intervention. But how would we be able to monitor the social impact of the intervention?

In order to tackle this issue, we separated our stakeholders into two groups to discuss two interventions and their social impact. We set our stakeholders to create personas of people to help them envision the needs and difficulties that users may face when utilizing our interventions. The goal is for stakeholders to recognize that different users may have varying needs, gains, and pains in their daily lives. It was a very fruitful discussion, and our stakeholders realized that their needs might be different from those of a resident, a student or a driver.

We concluded our workshop by discussing the next steps, including the procurement of sensors and the tender process for implementing our Nature-Based Solutions.