Commissioner Thierry Breton

Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton will engage in a dialogue with EU Mayors from the Living-in.EU movement and the Intelligent Cities Challenge on the green and digital transformation and socio-economic resilience of cities and communities on 2 December.   

The dialogue will be organised around two panels of Mayors. The first interactive panel will focus on planning and implementing the green and digital transformation of the local economy and society, the role of innovation and technology, local green deals and the issue of up and reskilling of the local workforce. The second interactive panel will discuss the potential of technology, data governance in cities, and use of local digital twins for cities and communities to enable their digital transformation.  

The event will take place in hybrid format, both in person, in the Square, Brussels, and online. EU Mayors and regional leaders are invited to participate, either online or in person. All participants should register their attendance here. Please note that physical participants will be required to present their EU Digital Covid Certificate (Covid Safe Pass) and follow public health measures. 

The event will also be webstreamed in English and in French.


13:30 Participants begin to arrive, technical preparations etc.

The Square, Mont des Arts, 1000 Brussels, Tea & Coffee served

14:30 Dialogue between Commissioner Breton and EU Mayors

Online via Zoom (for participants) and Webstreamed in English and French

Welcome, housekeeping, introductions, by Ms Meabh McMahon, Euronews (moderator) 

Opening address by Commissioner Thierry Breton 

Video message from the Slovenian Presidency, Mr Boštjan Koritnik, Minister for Public Administration of Slovenia
Video on the Intelligent Cities Challenge initiative 

First interactive panel on green and digital transformation of local economies 
How can European cities pave the way to the green and digital transition of the EU economy? This panel will explore cities’ vision for 2030, as well as the challenges and experiences in implementing Local Green Deals, and sustainable, competitive circular local value chains. The discussion will focus on sustainable investments, skills gaps and future labor force needs, support needed for local business and citizens, and measures to ensure effective collaborative governance at EU level.  


  • Ms Laia Bonet, Deputy Mayor of Barcelona, online
  • Mr Jacob Bundsgaard, Mayor of Aarhus, online
  • Mr François Baroin, Mayor of Troyes and former President of the federation of French Mayors
  • Mr Grigoris Konstantellos, Mayor of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni (Greece), in person
  • Mr Peter Kurz, Mayor of Mannheim, online 
  • Mr Gencho Kerezov, Deputy Mayor of Sofia, in person

Video message from Ms Päivi Laajala, Mayor of Oulu, founding member of Living-in.EU

Second interactive panel on local digital transformation 
European cities and communities require further investment in the digital transformation based on sustainable data infrastructure, real time and static data sharing across-domains, cities and borders, handling open and big data and strong data governance embracing public and private stakeholders. Such investments, notably in infrastructure and local digital twins, would enable cities and communities to reap the benefits of digital for improving mobility, energy efficiency, waste management, urban planning, air pollution monitoring, etc.


  • Mr Juhana Vartiainen, Mayor of Helsinki, online
  • Mr Mohamed Ridouani, Mayor of Leuven, in person
  • Ms Carmen Carvalheira, Vice-President of the region of Alentejo, in person
  • Ms Kata Tüttő, Deputy Mayor of Budapest, in person
  • Ms Amel Zenati, Counsellor, Grenoble, in person

Concluding remarks by Commissioner Breton 
Moderator closes the meeting

16:30 End of the meeting
16:30 Networking reception