My City – photography competition (CLOSED)

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What does urban environment mean to you? The European Environment Agency (EEA) has invited citizens to share moments captured in European cities in the ‘My City’ photography competition.

"My City" competition

Competition finalists and winners

Submissions closed on 15 August 2016 and competition finalists were announced on 12 September. You can view the 52 finalists' entries in the EEA Flickr album.

The finalists’ entries were presented to an external jury composed of environmental communication experts from across Europe, who determined the winners in the categories of Sustainable lifestyle in a city; Getting around in a city; Leisure time in a city; and Youth.

The public could also choose their favourite photo in an online public vote. The voting closed on 15 October and the winners of all prizes, including the Public Choice Award, were announced on 31 October 2016.

About the competition

Around 75% of population of the EU have chosen urban areas as their place to live. Europeans have adopted urban lifestyles and they use city amenities such as cultural, educational or health services. While cities are the engine of Europe’s economy and creators of European wealth, they depend heavily on resources of other regions to meet their demand for resources like energy, water, food, and to accommodate waste and emissions.

Environmental challenges and urbanisation opportunities are closely connected. Many cities struggle to cope with social, economic and environmental problems resulting from pressures such as overcrowding or decline, social inequity, pollution and traffic. On the other hand, the proximity of people, businesses and services provides opportunities to build a more resource-efficient Europe. Already, population density in cities means shorter journeys to work and services, and more walking, cycling or public transport use, while apartments in multi-family houses or blocks require less heating and less ground space per person. As a result, urban dwellers on average consume less energy and land per capita than do rural residents.

Finding the balance between density and compactness on one hand and quality of life in a healthy urban environment on the other is a major challenge for Europe’s urban areas. For more information about urban issues in Europe, EU policies and EEA activities in this area, please visit our 'Urban environment' pages.

My City photo competition invited European citizens to share what urban environment means to them. They could choose to depict a European city of their choice, tell a positive or a negative story through their submissions. Participants could focus on one of the following three categories:

  1. Sustainable lifestyle in a city
    How does my lifestyle impact the environment? Can I change my shopping list and eating habits to help combat climate change? A shower or a bath? Solar panels or a vegetable garden on my roof?
  2. Getting around in a city
    Do I cycle or drive? What is the quickest and most pleasant way to get to work or school? Do I enjoy the journey on public transport? 
  3. Leisure time in a city
    A stroll in the parks or a dive in the lake? Going to the theatre or for a run? What is the best way of experiencing my city? How do I spend my free time?

Competition winners will receive a cash prize, and all entries may be promoted by the EEA and its partners across Europe.


The winners will be awarded a cash prize of EUR 1000 in each category (Sustainable lifestyle in a city; Getting around in a city; Leisure time in a city), and EUR 500 for the Public Choice award and the Youth Prize.

The Youth Prize will be awarded to the winning entry, selected among those submitted by persons aged between 18 and 24 (born between calendar years 1992-1998) to any of the competition categories.

All the finalists have been put forward for the Public Choice Award and may also feature in future digital and print material from the EEA and its European partners.

The copyright of the materials submitted for this competition remains with respective participants. However, each entrant grants the EEA and its partners the right to use the submitted materials in its environmental communication crediting the copyright owners.

Selection process

The EEA appointed a pre-selection committee consisting of communication and environment experts that selected 30-50 finalists, which were then submitted to an external jury. The jury composed of environmental communication experts from across Europe has determined the winners, with the exception of the Public Choice Award.

For the Public Choice Award, the finalist entries put forward by the pre-selection committee were open for a public vote from 12 September to 15 October 2016.

The winners have been notified by email and the official announcement of the winners followed at the end of October 2016.

T2gE conference prize

Transition to the Green Economy (T2gE) conference logo

Competition finalists were presented at the Transition to the Green Economy (T2gE) conference on 6-7 September 2016 in Bratislava, Slovakia. T2gE conference participants voted for their favourite photos. The photo that received the most votes will be awarded a special prize from The Slovak presidency of the Council of the EU. The winner was announced in the closing session of the T2gE conference.


Submissions open 15 April 2016
Submissions closed 15 August 2016
Public vote opens 12 September 2016
Public vote closes 15 October 2016
Winners announced          End of October 2016


If you have questions about the competition, please .



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