3rd Project Meeting in Thimphu

Location: Thimphu, Bhutan
Dates: 2 -7 July 2012

  • Municipality of Thimphu
  • Province of Bohol
  • Guntur Municipal Corporation
  • Municipality of Rajshahi
  • Municipality of Växjö
  • Municipality of Bologna
  • ICLEI (European, South Asia and Southeast Asia Secretariats)

The DReAMS project meeting in Thimphu, Bhutan, was officially opened by the mayor of Thimphu Mr. Kinaly Dorjee on July 3rd. After a brief introduction of the city of Thimphu and the DReAMS project several project related issues were discussed more deeply. The targets were contrasted with the accomplishments in order to identify the areas that need further work. Throughout the afternoon, the status of the project in South Asia and South East Asia was reviewed as well as the progress the partners made on implementing ecoBUDGET. This focused on the achievements of the project in the 2 regions and the missed deliverables for the project. Each partner municipality, including Province of Bohol, Guntur Municipal Corporation, Rajshahi City Corporation, and Thimphu Thromde, presented the status of the ecoBudget implementation in their cities and the needs for implementation of PDMS in the cities. The European cities of Bologna, Italy and Växjö, Sweden presented interesting cases of sustainable initiatives undertaken by their municipalities, which were much appreciated by the Asian municipalities.

On the next day the participants learned more about Bohol’s experiences with linking PDMS to ecoBUDGET. Then the PDMS software version 3.0 was presented to all participants and its advantages and enhancements were highlighted. Following that, the Ms. Bedoshruti Sadhukan from ICLEI South Asia gave some insight in hands on experiences of participants to operate the PDMS software for planning. The linkage between ecoBUDGET and PDMS was especially highlighted at this point. In the afternoon Cristina Garzillo, from ICLEI Europe gave an overview of the ecoBUDGET web resource centre that can be used by cities to document their ecoBUDGET process. It consists of 2 parts – one official part with general information and one for the cities to develop their master budgets. In addition, Ms. Garzillo reported on the dissemination activities of the DReAMS project at the ICLEI World Congress 2012 and the Rio+20 United National Conference on Sustainable Development. At the World Congress the project was introduced at a session on “Green inclusive urban economy: Integrating environmental protection and poverty reduction”. The day concluded with a very interesting presentation on the Gross National Happiness (GNH) Index. The participants were introduced to this alternative means of measuring societal well being and learned interesting details on its application. The GNH is a holistic approach to sustainable development considering all dimensions important to a human being’s happiness, which is considered as the ultimate goal.

After two days of formal meetings, the third day offered an interesting site visit to showcase sustainable local initiatives. Even though these initiatives were relatively small they have a considerable impact on the objectives related to poverty reduction and environmental concerns. The group visited a paper recycling unit, a composting plant and a pet bottle crushing and management plant and learned a lot about their working practice. The final day of the DReAMS project meeting was dedicated to the planning of the upcoming steps and the discussion on the project’s progress. The meeting was closed with the finalization of the future work plan for the project.

Below you can download the presentations delivered during this project meeting:

- Introduction & Overview of the DReAMS project

- Introduction to the city of Bologna

- ecoBUDGET in Bologna

- GAIA project in Bologna

- Introduction to the city of Växjö

- Operationalizing Gross National Happiness

- ICLEI presentation

- Rajshahi presentation

- Bohol's ecoBUDGET progress

- Progress in ecoBUDGET in Guntur

- Presentation of the structure of the publication