Bruxelles: Cittaslow UE Meeting

Our network was founded on the philosophy of Slow food, prizing slowness in contrast to the speed associated with globalisation and the daily banalization of life. We rediscovered time for traditions, for the capacity to listen to the men and women of our communities, to favour the sustainable social and economic growth of our planet. Compared to Slow Food, a private institution, our network is composed of administrators and citizens and involves itself in every sector of the daily life of our communities. Food and agriculture, local farmers' markets, organic produce in school and town canteens, environment, landscape, sound policies for waste collection and for the creation of clean, alternative energy sources, town planning policies to restrict the development of greenfield sites, bio building, promotion of the territory through tourism and culture, as well as social solidarity, integration and participation. This is a demanding manifesto that our towns commit to through good, efficient practices that are discussed and exchanged inside the network. We are not perfect towns but joining Cittaslow means a constant commitment to reaching, at least in part, our goals.
Since 2008 our network has become global and today counts some 150 towns throughout the world, from Asia (South Korea and China) to Australia, from the Americas (Canada, USA, Colombia) to Africa (South Africa) and above all to Europe where there were the first Cittaslow towns.
Bruxelles Cittaslow UE Meeting is for the purposes of information and making you European parliamentarians aware of our policies and philosophy. We think it is important to be involved in projects, and to make use of the calls and actions of the European funds in the period 2013-2020 with an advantage derived from Cittaslow concepts. We ask you to get to know and to listen to the Cittaslow towns of your own countries, to favour the social, economic and democratic growth of our nations and above all of our Europe. We want to be a decidedly European network inside the worldwide network of the Cittaslow towns.


Cittaslow is the international hallmark for municipalities, which aims at the highest possible quality of life for its citizens, entrepreneurs and visitors. Participants apply the principles of this manifest. Cittaslow is innovative and international; an international network spread across 25 countries. Experiences and ideas are exchanged between all participants and each participant is innovative, sustainable and offers an excellent platform for European pilots in one of the 15 member states of the European Union that are home to a Cittaslow as well as to the whole of Europe.

1. A Cittaslow stands for quality of life
A Cittaslow safeguards the quality of life for its citizens. This is combined with devoting much attention to traditions that are linked to modern techniques. The objectives of Cittaslow are based on major internal solidarity; they assume the greatest of care for our environment and ensure everyone is aware and conscious of their surroundings. And Cittaslow achieves this through its effective policy and its daily operations.
Local communities will flourish optimally when they can rediscover their own joint identity and will, in turn, appreciate the fact that their surroundings also recognise those qualities. The local communities subsequently offer hospitality in return.

2. A Cittaslow appreciates quality
A Cittaslow is a conscious community which appreciates its own qualities. This is why a Cittaslow invests in the awareness of its own citizens and entrepreneurs, in order to safeguard the valuable aspects of their own community. Qualities are often appreciated most when they have disappeared; a Cittaslow will prevent this from happening. One of the most important concepts of Cittaslow is that it focuses on the earth again, like the Terra Madre Project teaches, and respects and values the landscape, farm land, natural places, inside and around towns, through concrete projects.

3. A Cittaslow stands for progress and makes this measurable
A Cittaslow invests in sustainability and quality. This is not an optional assignment and will be periodically measured through assessments and audits. Censis Institute of Rome, Cittaslow Scientific Committee, Ocse, and many other scientific institutions help us to realize this progressing check.

4. A Cittaslow gives meaning to the town-country relationship through its qualities
A Cittaslow links the green quality areas with the surrounding towns, often also within a metropolis. There is a major geographical spread of Cittaslow members throughout Europe. A Cittaslow ensures that the cultural history and community values are maintained and strengthened. This is achieved through restoration, by describing the cultural history and by providing information, with an extra focus on digital techniques. Our aim is to reduce the ecological footprint, to check the quality of the living areas and ecosystems year per year, applying a kind of ranking to all Cittaslow members.

5. A Cittaslow maintains and develops valuable landscapes and biodiversity
A Cittaslow promotes bioarchitecture, biological agriculture and biodiversity of the landscape, as intended in the future European agricultural policy. We are committed first of all to introduce "green" technologies for mobility, services, infrastructures, etc. Alternative mobility is preferred, whereby the valuable landscape can be discovered through cycling paths, walking routes and cable installations.

6. A Cittaslow maintains traditions and stands for innovation
The best from the past, the best of the present age. A Cittaslow focuses on traditionally produced products, objects and crafts. It stimulates innovative techniques, in so far as these are sustainable and do not pose any threat to the environment. A Cittaslow works actively on saving energy and stimulates the use of alternative sustainable energy sources. "Memory" is one of the most important aims of Cittaslow. Each member town is committed to preserve and hand down the heritage of know-how and local wisdom.

7. A Cittaslow stimulates regional products and short food chains
A Cittaslow is closely linked with Slowfood and supports traditional production and stimulates the development of regional products and commercial trading in the own region.

8. A Cittaslow is a community and provides social cohesion
First and foremost, a Cittaslow is a community of citizens that looks after and cares for each other. A Cittaslow ensures the vitality of the communities and the facilities of the communities are maintained. A Cittaslow guarantees that its own citizens are given support when needed and stimulates the social cohesion between the citizens. The new citizenship rights are crucial in the economical and social development on a local level.

9. A Cittaslow is sustainable for the future European generations
A Cittaslow opts for sustainable solutions. All good things are maintained and this should not have a negative effect on the development of future generations.

10. A Cittaslow is a tool against old and new poverties
Cittaslow is active against the poverty, because the social inclusion projects, the responsibility and participation involved, are very effective against poverty in towns on a local level. The social inclusion and new citizenship projects will help to build a better life in the future for our communities and for the whole of all Europe.

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