LASERMed 2024

Acción local para la recuperación socioeconómica en el Mediterráneo

EN CURSO enero 2024 – diciembre 2024

LASERMed 2024

Acción local para la recuperación socioeconómica en el Mediterráneo


Project overview


Ciudades piloto

Ciudades asociadas


100.000 € de la Diputació de Barcelona



LASERMed (From local action to the impetus of the covenant of mayors in the Mediterranean) a ‎funded project by the Diputació de Barcelona and led by MedCities in association with the municipalities of Zarqa (Jordan) and Agadir (Morocco), also involving the cities of the first edition of Lasermed: Zgharta-Ehden (Lebanon), Oujda (Morocco), Sousse (Tunisia), As Salt (Jordan).

The project aims to promote and strengthen the action of the municipalities of the Mediterranean region in favor of sustainable, inclusive, and resilient economic development with social groups with difficulties in finding professional opportunities, such as women and young people.
Firstly, pilot actions will be implemented in the cities of Zarqa (Jordan) and Agadir (Morocco), promoting the role of the town councils in the articulation of the economic activity of the territory from an environmental perspective.
A second axis is the creation of the LASERMed Community that includes online and physical knowledge exchange of best practices with the protagonists of the first edition of the LaserMed project (2021-2023)Zgharta-Ehden (Lebanon), Oujda (Morocco), Sousse (Tunisia), As Salt (Jordan) -, the technical services of the councils of the province of Barcelona, and the cities involved in the current LASEMED edition.
Finally, the last axis aims to support the deployment of the Covenant of Mayors for Energy and Climate in the Mediterranean region by analyzing the ‘Energy and Climate Plans’, or equivalents, of MedCities members and to identify gaps and needs to prepare future actions.

Description and background

The Mediterranean region is one of the most vulnerable ecosystems on the planet, both because of the serious impacts generated by climate change, and because of the progressive loss in the levels of well-being and economic development of its inhabitants.
This vulnerability is multi-causal and does not affect all countries and areas of the region equally. The present project proposes actions in two countries, Morocco and Jordan, in which GDP per capita did not stop growing during the first two decades of the 2000s (World Bank).
The most prominent of these figures and which motivates the definition of the present project is the difficulty of accessing the labor market for population groups in a situation of vulnerability.
The informality of many sectors of the economy and the lack of opportunities to diversify sources of income result in an increase in inequality and loss of economic muscle capable of generating employment. More than 80% of active young people in the countries of the region work in the informal economy, an economic precariousness that results in a loss of effective access to basic services and opportunities for emancipation. Unemployment and lack of opportunities to start their projects affect the group of women with particular force. Recently, in both Jordan and Morocco, progress has been made to make the creation of micro-enterprises more flexible and the promotion of self-employment, as well as in the introduction of the social and solidarity economy as a platform for the promotion of work more inclusive, facts that generate new opportunities that must be taken advantage of.
The vulnerabilities of the Mediterranean economies are exacerbated by the effects of climate change. To build resilient production and life systems, the present project proposes as fundamental the promotion of local energy efficiency and autonomy initiatives to achieve sustainable economic development.

Main challenges

The economic, social, and political vulnerability that affects the Mediterranean region, added to the aggravation of climatic conditions in one of the most vulnerable areas of the planet, forces local governments to deal with it the prioritization of balanced territorial, the use of existing resources, energy efficiency, collaboration, and social innovation. The present project proposes actions in all these areas, focusing on strengthening the role of local governments. In this sense, the loss of technical, financial, and even competence capacities that affect the local governments of the region reinforces the interest of an action that supports municipal public policies of socio-economic promotion and climate resilience.
The project proposes actions to promote economic activity in the cities of Agadir and Zarqa, prioritizing young people and women. In Agadir, where the participation of women in the labor market is 11.3%, women entrepreneurs with business ideas will be trained and supported, and young entrepreneurs will be supported in the field of renewable energies. In Zarqa, where unemployment is 19%, work will be done on the local involvement and emancipation of young people by supporting green entrepreneurship.

Specific objectives

1. To promote and strengthen the action of the municipalities of the Mediterranean region in favor of sustainable, inclusive, and resilient economic development.

2. Implement pilot actions in the cities of Zarqa (Jordan) and Agadir (Morocco), promoting the role of town councils in the articulation of economic activity in the territory, and in promoting a more sustainable, inclusive, and efficient economy in the welfare generation.

3. Experience of the LASERMed project (2021-2023) and to promote the exchange of knowledge with the councils associated with the first edition, the technical services of the Diputació de Barcelona and to involve councils from the MedCities network.

4. Analyze the Energy and Climate Plans, or equivalents, that are being designed and/or implemented in the municipalities that are members of the MedCities network, and identify gaps and needs to prepare future actions to support the deployment of the Covenant of Mayors for the ‘Energy and Climate’ in the Mediterranean region.

MedCities’ role

MedCities will act as the coordinating entity of the action and will be responsible for the piloting and regular monitoring of the technical, financial, and administrative implementation of the project, as well as its monitoring and reporting following the appropriate procedures, guaranteeing smooth and effective communication with the financing entity. MedCities will also guarantee the mobilization of the actors associated with the project and will inform the services of the Provincial Council (Diputació de Barcelona) in case of deviations and/or important issues that affect the progress of the project.
On the other hand, the town councils of Agadir and Zarqa will be responsible for the identification, design, and implementation of the pilot activities, and actions that will be carried out in continuous communication with the coordinator. Piloted by the Local Development Unit of Zarqa and the Council of Social Affairs in the case of Agadir, they will guarantee the coherence and relevance of the planned actions, they will involve the necessary local teams and actors in each phase of the project, as well as the identification of learning needs.
Finally, the “LASERMed community” formed by the councils participating in the previous edition of the project (Zgharta-Ehden (Lebanon), Oujda (Morocco), Sousse (Tunisia), As Salt (Jordan), as well as the technical services of the Barcelona Provincial Council (Diputació de Barcelona), will be requested to participate in virtual and face-to-face knowledge mobility activities.

SDGs aligned

The project is structured around an integrated, transversal, and holistic work idea around the construction of more sustainable, more inclusive, and more resilient cities and urban spaces (ODS 11), through specific work in the generation of job opportunities and emancipation for vulnerable groups with difficulties accessing the labor market, promoting a sustainable and inclusive economy that offers equal treatment and opportunities for all (SDG 8). The project also emphasizes the creation and nurturing of synergies between cities on a regional scale, the exchange of knowledge, and the promotion of international alliances to influence public policies on climate change (SDG 17).

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