Local development strategy and good practices of citizen participation in areas of priority intervention (BIPZIP) in Lisbon

School of Technology and Architecture, ISCTE - University Institute of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal

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Dr. Alexandra Paio


Dr. Paulette Duarte,Université Grenoble Alpes, Laboratoire Pacte, Grenoble, France


Lisbon City Council, Portugal

Université Grenoble Alpes, Laboratoire Pacte, Grenoble, France

Research project

Instruments and models of local development are needed to support an active role of citizens in the construction of the city. In recent decades there has been a renewed impulse to participatory processes in Europe that has contributed to greater civil society involvement in planning at different scales. Today, urban policies for local development are increasingly used by municipalities and are a source of inspiration for other cities to develop their own policies in this regard.

In 2010 the Lisbon City Council, aware of the city's urban inequalities, seventy-seven Priority Intervention Neighbourhoods and Zones (hereinafter BIP/ZIP, original Portuguese acronym), which constituted a pioneering strategy to enable bottom-up citizen participation in co-government models, urban interventions and cultural initiatives. In addition to establishing local governance structures that facilitate communication and shared decision-making between the public administration and neighborhood organizations, BIP/ZIP also incorporated an initial funding program for community partnership initiatives with strong local impact.

After ten years of implementation in Lisbon, it is already possible to take stock of its impact on the city and draw some conclusions that could be applied to other cities. Therefore, the purpose of this project is to create a taxonomy of local governance structures that facilitate communication, negotiations and shared decision-making between the public administration and neighbourhood organisations, following the experience of BIP/ZIP. The results of the research will contribute to the design of a co-governance model in which municipalities and communities collaborate in the development of strategies that promote quality of life and territorial cohesion.

The research work includes secondments in Grenoble to study local practices on local development, and in the municipality of Lisbon to analyse policy guidelines on local development strategies and good practices of citizen participation, as well as to access to data related BIP/ZIP programme.

->To conduct an individual research project, interlinked with the other ESRs projects, focusing on:
  • Analysis of best practices in co-governance tools and models for local development in cities (Lisbon metropolitan area, Grenoble metropolitan area)
  • Qualitative methodologies to map local governance structures
  • Involvement of residents and policy-makers in local co-governance
->To participate in the network-wide activities (workshops, summer schools, conferences)
->To carry out the training required by the PhD programme of the host university.

As part of the individual research project, ESRs will carry out two secondments, each of 2 to 3 months, in the partner organisations.

ESRs are expected to have completed a doctoral thesis that can be defended at the host institution within or shortly thereafter the project lifetime.

Specific requirements
->Masters’ degree in Architecture, Urban Planning or equivalent
->Knowledge of social sciences or political sciences
->It is desirable that candidates have professional experience in participatory design strategies for local development
Generic requirements

The candidates must fulfil the eligibility and mobility requirements of the Marie Curie ITN programme:

To be eligible for recruitment within an ITN project, you therefore must – at the date of recruitment – be within the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of your research career and not have a doctoral degree. Full-time equivalent research experience is measured from the date when you obtained the degree entitling you to embark on a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained, or in the country in which you are recruited), even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged. You may therefore be required to provide documentation proving your eligibility for recruitment.
You are therefore required to undertake transnational mobility in order to be eligible for recruitment in an ITN project. As such, you must not have resided or carried out your main activity (e.g. work, studies) in the country where you have been recruited "for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date"5. Holidays are not counted. Your employer is required to verify this fact, therefore you may be required to provide supporting documentation proving your place(s) of residence or work during the previous 3 years. Note that the mobility rule applies only to your first recruitment within the project, and not to other organisations to which you might be sent on secondment or at which you may subsequently also be recruited. Finally, the mobility rule is related to your residence or main activity and not to your nationality.

Please find here more information about the requirements for Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellows in Innovative Training Networks (ITN)

About us

ISCTE is a high-quality public research-oriented university being among the 150 best young universities in the world (The Young University Rankings 2017), has about 9,000 students, half of them in doctoral and master programs. With a multidisciplinary approach, it is one of the most dynamic and innovative institutions in Portugal, running more than one hundred international projects with several research, public and private organizations. Researchers at ISCTE fulfil the mission of producing scientific knowledge and participating in international agendas and networks for the advancement of knowledge in the Institute’s areas of expertise.

ISTAR-IUL - Information Sciences and Technologies and Architecture Research Center has the mission to carry out applied and multidisciplinary research in the convergence of areas like Computer Science and Information Technologies, Mathematics (applied to computational problems), Architecture and Urbanism (theory, modelling, simulation or fabrication). Several research projects are carried out in Digital Living Spaces group, involving experts and communities.


The Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions which include:

->a living allowance (2,753 Euros per month)
->a monthly mobility allowance (600 Euros per month)
->a family allowance (if applicable, 500 Euros per month)

These allowances are used to cover the gross salary, employers’ compulsory deductions and benefits for the three years of the Marie Curie programme. The living allowance is a gross EU contribution to the salary costs of the full-time researcher. The family allowance is an estimated average that will be adapted to the specific conditions of the hired researcher. All three subsidies are subject to the deduction of compulsory social security contributions and income taxes in accordance with the regulations applicable in the country of the host institution. At the end of the three-year contract any possible difference between the gross amounts paid and the amount to be paid according to the programme will be equalized.

Enrolment fees in the PhD programme of the host institution will be covered by the programme during the 36-month period.


Please use this form to provide the following information:

->personal data
->confirmation of compliance with the eligibility and mobility requirements

And the required documentation:

->letter of motivation (maximum 2 pages)
->CV in EUROPASS format
->certificate of English proficiency
->transcripts of your academic degrees (translated into English, by a sworn translator; including ranking of degree classification)
->a research proposal in line with the ESR project (maximum 6 pages), for each ESR project you would like to apply (maximum three)
->if applicable, a professional portfolio
->two reference letters

Prof. Alexandra Paio (

More information

PhD programme at ISTA – School of Technology and Architecture, ISCTE-IUL

Working at ISCTE- IUL

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