Busan in Barcelona

See below the programme



The delegation from Busan continued its European visits with a 3-day visit to Barcelona, where representatives exchanged views on the Digital Transformation Strategy, Urban Planning Challenges and potential areas of Cooperation on R&D and Education.

The visit started in Casa Asia, a public institution that aims at strengthening the knowledge and dialogue about Asia in Spain, with the analysis and discussion of civic, political, social, cultural, economic and environmental issues. Its Director General, Mr. David Navarro welcomed the delegation followed by words by Mr. Felip Roca, Director of International Relations of Barcelona City Hall, who offered a welcome lunch to the delegation.

Foto in Casa Asia

The delegation from  Busan was interested in Barcelona’s experience on PV Power Generation, Urban Regeneration and Smart City technologies.

On the first day, a visit to the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre and a presentation of the GrowSmarter project were followed by a visit to the 22@ district with its landmark Super Blocks Project .

GrowSmarter brings together cities and industry to integrate and demonstrate  12smart city solutions in energy, infrastructure and transport, to provide other cities with valuable insights on how they work in practice and opportunities for replication. The main participant cities are Barcelona (Spain), Stockholm (Sweden), Cologne (Germany), Graz (Austria), Suceava (Romania), Valetta (Malta), Porto (Portugal) and Cork (Ireland).

Foto in Supercomputing Center

The Barcelona Supercomputing Centre hosts the most powerful supercomputer in Spain.

The implementation of the superblocks’ programme is part of an ongoing process of improving and transforming the public space to deal with challenges such as the scarcity of green spaces, elevated levels of pollution and environmental noise, road accident rates and sedentary lifestyles. In that sense they are intended to reverse the distribution of urban space between vehicles and people by giving priority to pedestrians and fostering sustainable mobility.

Foto in TMB

The second day of the visit, took the Busan delegation to the Triangle Ferroviari, which is the logistics hub of the Barcelona Transport Facility where the delegates from Korea learned about the different mobility solutions Barcelona has implemented and the new challenges its facing with tariff integration and eco-friendly buses.

The Busan delegation was impressed with the system used by TMB (Municipal Barcelona Transport company) to manage the reception and liquidation of cash payments in the bus. TMB and Busan share their experience to incentive e-payment versus cash payment.

Foto in Pier 01

In the afternoon, the delegation visited Pier 01, Barcelona’s new Start-up Incubator Headquarters close to the old city harbour.

Barcelona Tech City is an open association to all the members of the digital and technological business ecosystem present in Barcelona. The global aim of Barcelona Tech City is to consolidate and stimulate an emerging sector with a turnover of 6.7 billion euro and 15,000 workers, contributing to showcase Barcelona as a reference, mainly in and from South Europe, in the international tech scene.

The last day of the visit took place at the Barcelona City Council, where delegates could learn about the history of the building and followed with a wrap up of the visit where the main topics of cooperation were summarized.

Foto in City Hall

During the wrap-up meeting, the Korean delegates and the representatives of Barcelona discussed and identified several fields to reinforce the Busan-Barcelona city-to-city cooperation and they went deeper into further details.

The first area of collaboration will be in the smart-city development in which they have had the opportunity to follow up various projects, such as the Busan Smart City Expo 2018.

Urban mobility was also identified as the second field of cooperation, in which they have highlighted concrete issues such as the public transportation fare system in which the share of experiences and best practices could provide innovative solutions for both cities.

Thirdly, there was a consensus to explore the possibility to jointly participate in some calls related to Smart City, Clean Energy or Urban Mobility in the framework of the Horizon 2020 of the European Union.

Fourthly, in the field of urban regeneration projects for vacant urban spaces, they acknowledge that there is a lot of potential for cooperation between the two cities, especially for the implementation of new cultural and tourism facilities.

Finally, as a result of the site visit at Barcelona Tech City new area of common interest appeared, which is the cooperation between the stakeholders of the start-ups ecosystems of Barcelona and Busan.