THE ROLE OF THE MUNICIPALITY
In the Swedish case and according to the currently proposed local network, the city of Gothenbuurg has the following support roles: 1. The renting of stands, booths, and equipment from the forum by municipal organizations and departments. 2. Providing specialists and other personnel to the forum free of change. 3. Assisting environmental NGOs, CBOs, and other ecologically active groups to manage their affairs and to function as collaborators with the forum, thereby helping to extend the network.
The dity of Gothenburg has been in many ways a catalyst in estabilishing the Ekocentrum as the main permanent ecological center in Sweden.
Another important case in point is Tehran, Iran which has begun the estabilishment of a multipurpose center, &rdquoScience city&rdquo. This center´s main concern is a comprehensive Forum of Permanent Ecological Activities, funded entirely by the city. The project is being realized by two municipal companies, Tehran Technical & Engineering Consulting Organization and the Development of Cultural Environmental Company in cooperation with Gothenburg university.
&rdquoScience City&rdquo is scheduled to be inaugurated and available for public use on March 21, 1997. This compled will be used as a multipurpose tool for education and information to citizens,schools, researchers, Non-Governmental Organizations, and Community-Based Organizations, etc.
Estabilishing a permanent forum, based on local resources and local cultures which bring together citizens of large cities, small towns, and even villages in a network is extremely important. Such ecological permanent forums can be realized only if municipalities support and believe in such activities.
As previously mentioned, this support is primarily to provide a multipurpose forum for education and information to the public. Another form of municipal support, proposed by the local network in Gothenburg, concerns research would also be financed by the city, thus creating a true local network between the university, the Ecocentrum, and local citizens.
One practical example of such research has been conducated by the Department of Human Ecology of Gothenburg University in cooperation with the Nordic Ministry. The project, entitled Generator, concerns the re-integration of traffic, town planning, architecture, and other currently &rdquosegregated texture&rdquo in the area.
Hopefully, the municipalities concerned here and municipalities in general will see the future benefit in financing this type of research. In this way the local network becomes more active. The university, the Ecocentrum, and the city will cooperate and find their place in the local network. In the above-mentioned example,an, Eco-Park in the center of Mölndal, has been proposed as a solution to integrate the &rdquocity texture&rdquo.
Research supported by municipalities, conducted by universities, and in collaboration with Ecocentrums will find their practical places in all societies through sustainable local networks
funded and staffed with local resources.