AGORA: Pilot Case Study in Dresden, Germany

(Credit: Isaac Wolff, Unsplash)

The AGORA Project

The AGORA project promotes societal transformation to empower local communities to address the climate crisis. AGORA aims to achieve this through a multidisciplinary, integrated approach and four pilot studies all around Europe.

AGORA is a HORIZON Europe project started in January 2023. It supports the EU Mission on Adaptation to Climate Change.


The German pilot case study collaborates with various stakeholders in the city of Dresden, including the city council, academia, the private sector, and civil society organisations, as well as neighbouring rural regions. The city’s upcoming climate adaptation strategy has been used as a starting point to identify, together with local stakeholders from diverse sectors, the drivers of vulnerability risks and the local gaps in their adaptive capacity. Dresden is one of the greenest cities in Europe. However, extreme climate events, such as forest fires, heavy rains, floodings, summer droughts, and heat stress, are on the rise. Therefore, the primary focus of the pilot case study lies in bolstering resilience against recurrent heavy rains leading to significant flooding and the emergence of heat waves.

Activities so far

In Dresden’s vibrant heart, on November 16, 2023, a significant gathering marked the launch of one of AGORA’s pilot region initiatives, carefully organised by AGORA’s project partner, the European Citizen Science Association (ECSA).

A diverse group of stakeholders, including representatives from the local administration, academia, civil society organisations, and private companies embarked on a joint effort to delve into the complexities of climate adaptation and its consequences for Dresden’s future.

The workshop’s agenda included a mix of frontal presentations and interactive activities, allowing participants to switch between static and dynamic moments. This balanced approach ensured that participants could stay engaged throughout the event. The workshop’s location, the ‘citizen laboratory’ of Dresden (in German, “Bürgerlabor”), perfectly reflected the event’s spirit – a place for trying new things, working together, and coming up with innovative ideas.

To read more about the inception workshop please see here: Kicking off the first AGORA pilot study in Dresden, Germany – AGORA (

Figure 1. Inception workshop in Dresden, Germany. (Credit: Nefertari Nachtigall, AGORA project)

Next steps

During the inception workshop, vulnerabilities and gaps in the adaptive capacity of Dresden were identified. These findings, combined with a comprehensive understanding of the activities and challenges participants are currently involved in, aim to promote climate adaptation and citizen engagement.

Next, the AGORA project aims to address the identified gaps, selecting those suitable for citizen involvement, and bring them to focus groups for discussion. Together with citizens, the AGORA project will develop solutions to fill these gaps. Participants from the inception workshop have been invited to an online follow-up meeting, where gaps for citizen involvement will be identified and prioritized.

Stakeholders are now welcome to engage with the AGORA project in co-creating the next activities and agenda for the focus groups. This co-creation will continue in the future, involving the entire network of citizens, academia, policy and decision-makers, private sectors, etc.