The second day of the Time Use Week started with the General Assembly of the Local and Regional Time Network, under the title ‘Municipalities: key players in the time revolution’. Representatives from Barcelona, Bolzano, Bogotá, and Strasbourg highlighted what the network means for the promotion of time policies from cities and metropolitan areas, especially in reference to the exchange of good practices and joint work to ensure that time use in cities is considered a key issue.
Marta Junqué from the Barcelona Time Use Initiative (secretariat of the network) stated that the Network is a meeting point aimed at exchanging and promoting implementable time policies generated at the local and regional level. Among the achievements of this new period after the re-launch of the network in 2021, she highlighted the creation of the concept “World Capital of Time Policies, and the publication of the Local and Regional Time Agenda on Life balance: work, care, sleep and personal time, the awarding of a European project for the further growth of the network, the meetings of the board to share and jointly design the objectives for 2023, and a new website.
Sonia Ruíz, Director for time policies at Barcelona City Council, explained what it has meant for the city to be recognised as the world’s first capital of time policies: to continue the legacy of the city as a benchmark in time policies since 2003. Among the activities organised by the city, she mentioned the organisation of events with other municipalities to exchange good practices, and the launch of communication and awareness campaigns on time policies, with special emphasis on citizens as the target audience. At the assembly, Angelo Gennaccaro, councillor at Bolzano (Italy) announced that Bolzano will become the next world capital of time policies in 2023. The event closed with the welcome of new cities and organisations to the network with representatives from Bogotá, Buenos Aires, Tornquist (Argentina), the Catalan Association of Municipalities (ACM), Federation of Municipalities of Catalonia (FMC) and Synergie Wallonie, whom highlighted the great opportunity of being part of the Network and working together for its consolidation and expansion.
The following session on the idea of the 15-minute city and 45-minute regions addressed the relationship between time policies and sustainability. The framework for the session was the presentation of the dossier ‘Time for life: a contextualised reflection on the sustainable city’ with the participation of its authors Charo Morán and Yayo Herrero. Afterwards, successful experiences on that topic were presented, such as the well-known Superblocks of Care in Bogotá, in which the perspective of proximity and mobility is incorporated in the design of care services; or the Bolzano Mobility Plan where they promote the use of bikes with projects such as the Kids on bikes or the event Bolzano by bike to increase and make safe the use of bike among students.
This was followed by the workshop ‘How to establish a Time Agreement in a municipality’, as an example of a tool for improving time organisation in municipalities. During the session, the methodology for creating time agreements was explained, and a practical activity was carried out to discuss and reflect on real cases of time policy implementation.
To end the day, an official reception for the network members was held at Barcelona City Hall. There, Raquel Gil, Barcelona City Council’s Employment Promotion and Policies against job insecurity Commissioner, welcomed the Time Use Week participants stating that “time policies at workplace are very important; the time we spend at work still is at the centre of our daily time organisation”. The venue was also a valuable occasion for Angelo Gennaccaro, Councillor from Bolzano, to say that the Time Use Week is very important to exchange good practices for those municipalities interested and not knowing where to start. He also declared “our goal is to extend the Local and regional Time network by being the next Capital on Time Policies”.