GUST - Unleashing Urban Innovation

Author: GUST (Governance of Urban Sustainability Transitions)

Date: September 2015

Key findings

The GUST project is funded by Urban Europe, whichh aim is to examine, inform and advance the governance of sustainability transitions through urban living labs (ULL). Partners are Lund University (Sweden), Durham University (UK), Erasmus University Rotterdam (Netherlands), Joanneum Research (Austria). 


  • Design: research on the ways in which ULL are being designed and how ULL vary between urban contexts.
  • Practices: research on how, by whom and with what impact ULL are put into practice.
  • Processes: understanding the processes through which ULL create an impact beyond their immediate domain (critical in terms of assessing their potential as a means of governing transitions for sustainability). 
  • Integration: synthesis of empirical results and conceptual links between design, practices and processes as well as co-production of knowledge with key users and disseminating project results.


  • In-depth cases (12-16) of ULL from Sweden, the UK, Austria and the Netherlands including the cities of Malmö, Newcastle, Graz and Rotterdam.
  • Snap-shot cases of ULL examples across Europe.


  • A systematic framework for evaluating the design, practices and processes of ULL to enable the comparative analysis of their potential and limitations.
  • New insights into the governance of urban sustainability and improving the design and implementation of ULL in order to realise their potential.