The Role of Institutional Design and Public Leadership in Spurring Collaborative Innovation

Oslo is one of many global cities with high ambitions with regard to climate mitigation, and with its new climate goals, it aspires to join the league of the most ambitious climate cities in the world: Vancouver aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% below 2007 levels before 2050; Barcelona aims to reduce its CO2 emissions per capita by 40% compared to 2005 figures; Copenhagen aims to be the first climate neutral city by 2025—a slightly more ambitious goal than that of her little sister Oslo (City of Vancouver 2016; City of Barcelona 2015; City of Copenhagen 2009). Hence, the problem that Oslo shares with other climate cities is how to find ways of achieving its ambitious goals. This is a huge challenge, and the city government’s approach has been to develop a variety of collaborative initiatives, internal as well as external. Multiactor networks and collaborative arenas have been established across the city administration, as well as with the neighboring county and its municipalities, the business community, environmental organizations of various sorts, and the citizens of Oslo. Of all these initiatives, the city government has recently directed most of its attention and energy to activities aiming to improve in-house collaboration between a large number of administrative departments and agencies.

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