Sustainable Cities International (SCI) is a registered charity and non-profit organization founded in 1993 and based in Vancouver, Canada. With core staff in Vancouver and a network of international associates, SCI works with cities around the world to bring about change towards urban sustainability. SCI focuses on building human capacity within cities so that innovation and change - which is required for sustainability - can occur.
SCI is both a think tank and a "do tank," bringing together the business community, civil society organizations and various levels of government to tackle urban issues. Guidance is provided on a variety of projects from large-scale planning strategies for cities to small scale urban sustainability projects. Projects are designed in response to the needs of cities and in collaboration with the cities.
The SCI Energy Lab
The SCI Energy Lab is a program designed to create capacity for innovation in the development of local, sustainable energy solutions for cities. The Lab aims to deepen the understanding of how cities can address the barriers that prevent large scale uptake of sustainable energy technologies.
Participating cities are either leading or committed to accelerating sustainable energy initiatives. Working with this initial cohort of cities the SCI Energy Lab will provide a multidisciplinary forum for collaborative problem solving and idea generation around all aspects of the design, implementation and regulation of sustainable urban energy systems. The common thread for the energy labs are not the ideas themselves (for ideas are often the easiest part of innovation) but "how" they were made to happen. The project will focus on building this capacity through city to city exchanges that engage the key players in urban energy systems.
Affiliated Researcher Program
The Sustainable Cities International Affiliated Researchers Program (ARP) is a collaborative initiative bringing together top level international graduate students with the projects and expertise of SCI network member cities. The ARP fosters a three way exchange between researchers, individual cities, and the broader SCI network.
Aimed at graduate students researching urban sustainability, the ARP gives students access to innovative urban sustainability leaders and projects. Following a competitive selection process, successful applicants work with SCI and local project staff to plan and implement their research program. SCI provides Affiliated Researchers (ARs) with guidance and helps facilitate their research work on the ground. For their part, ARs feed their research back into the SCI network, providing analytical insights into the strengths, weaknesses, and larger context for work going on in SCI member cities.