Supporting strategic local development: Development of the SymbioCity Approach


The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR) has in 2010 been commissioned by Sida to pursue the development of the SymbioCity Approach in the coming three years.

Within SALAR, the Growth and Community Development Division has the overall responsibility for the project while SKL International is responsible for managing and driving the different project components on its behalf.

With the increasing scale of urban growth – especially in transition and developing countries – there is immense need for more holistic planning and governance of urban development, including environmental system solutions. Due to its access to good examples of sustainable urban development through its internal network of local governments, SALAR/SKL International has been identified as a suitable coordinating body to foster and further develop the Sida-initiated SymbioCity Manual. It illuminates methods and tools for an integrated approach on sustainable urban development with special focus on the promotion of interdisciplinary working procedures in the municipality and among other stakeholders. 

The overall objective of the project is to position SymbioCity as a tool for analysis, planning and implementation as well as disseminating know-how through projects, training and international networks. The project is based on a number of key components including: Networking and promotion of the Manual; Developing parallel publications and annexes to the Manual; Developing training material and curricula in cooperation with training providers based on the Manual; and seeking practical application of the Manual in new cities.