Mapa Barcelona +Sostenible (Barcelona - Spain)

Case Study

Mapa Barcelona +Sostenible (Barcelona - Spain)

Barcelona’s Smart City Strategy has a holistic view of the city, comprising several projects that resort to technology as a transversal tool to manage the city’s resources and services in a more efficient way. The final goal is to achieve a sustainable social, economic and urban development, thereby improving the quality of life of its citizens.

After an extensive consultation process, Barcelona took shape in its Agenda 21 Commitment towards Sustainability (from 2002 to 2012), a document that defined broadly agreed principles, objectives and lines of action to move towards a better city. During this time, Barcelona has developed ideas about what is good for the city and how to achieve it, several collaborative projects have started, and unquestionable progress has been achieved.

In 2012, Barcelona redefined its Citizen Commitment to Sustainability, marking the roadmap toward a more equitable, prosperous, and self-sufficient city for the next 10 years.

Barcelona +Sustainable Map is a virtual interactive map linked to the Open Green Map (international initiative). It is also a social network for smartphones, which allows to introduce socio-environmental initiatives relevant to the city. Specifically, the map provides practical information about interest points (such as shopping, accommodation, equipment, and infrastructure), signposted with QR codes and citizen experiences (stories, photographs, and activities) of the city. This map gives visibility to the contributions that citizens make to improve their city, from small and emerging initiatives to large projects. It is a tool for community recognition, communication, and awareness, and it constitutes a participatory project that aims to promote the sustainability of the city and strengthen the public network in Barcelona.

The innovative aspect of this project is the fact that the content of the new map is being created through collaborative workshops, and the tool is also being used as a teaching resource to transmit environmental awareness and to promote student participation.

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Case study country(ies)

Improved e-Governance and citizen services;

Improved supports for business.

Description of the specific objectives:

- Advancing social and business commitment towards a sustainable and collaborative culture, creating spaces for community exchanges, participation, and meetings in the territory;

- Encouraging responsible behaviour, sustainable mobility, responsible production and consumption, and respect for natural and cultural heritage;

- Being a reference portal for citizenship, becoming a normal element of consultation of the natural, and constituting a social tool to boost the green economy;

- Having a tool that is open to the public and the dynamism of the city’s transformation, picking and highlighting the residents’ experiences and knowledge of the environment.


Catalan Society for Environmental Education (SCEA), Centre for Research and Information on Consumption (CRIC), and municipal centre of the Sun Factory (LFdS) (creators); Environmental and Social Agents (coordinators); Citizens (People who participate in collaborative mapping).


- Involve the community in the production of content;

- Be able to add cultural and social value;

- Avoid the technology polarization of citizens and the discrimination of non-technological citizens;

- Ensure equity and fairness.

Solutions deployed

Internet; Virtual maps; Open data infrastructures; Mobile devices.

Smart Solution(s) deployed by the case

The virtual map was created in 2014 and has been updated with initiatives and places on a regular basis.

Results and Impacts

The Barcelona +Sustainable Map gives information about sustainable shops, services and businesses, environmental facilities, fauna and flora wildlife refuges, and so on, to every citizen who is interested. This initiative connected the city to work together towards sustainable development, it contributed to improve the urban environment, and it promotes spaces and highlights the environmental heritage attractions.