Krapowa - Sustainable Communities

What does "sustainable development" actually mean and how could/should it look like on municipality level?

After being an important spot on the industrial map, the town of Krapowa is facing major problems. During the last years, many factories and plants had to shut down, leading to high unemployment rates, depopulation, and tight budget situations. In addition to the economic crisis, the town also faces environmental issues, the educational facilities are outdated, and other social and cultural institutions are not able to withstand the economic difficulties. The town is in need of new concepts and creative approaches in order to sustainably revive their town. Therefore, the residents of Krapowa are challenged to re-organize the city resources.

Scenario & Procedure

The politicians won’t be able to solve the problems on their own. That is why the mayor encourages all residents to be active and to get involved in finding creative solutions to end the crisis. But to find common grounds is not that easy, as there are various contradicting interests due to different stakeholders. Activists, businessmen, and politicians, all residents have their own perspective of how the future of Krapowa should look like. Additionally, the elections for the new town council are soon to happen, which makes the situation even more tense. The simulation game will show if actors can agree on a common vision of a sustainable future of Krapowa.


For at least 40 years the “limits of growth” are a big issue in public debates. But still, it is widely disputed how to organize a society which is not based on the principle of growth. Especially when it comes to the question, who should reduce his or hers living standard, things become difficult. Within the simulation game, these abstract questions are linked to the all day life of a small town. Through the negotiation process, participants will realize the importance of using a holistic approach that includes environmental, cultural, social, and political aspects to ensure an inclusion of all actors and therefore an optimum utilization of the available resources. By this, the participants are encouraged to reflect on sustainable development, and act in order to improve the situations in their own village, town or region.

Learning Goals
  • Insights on the limits of permanent growth
  • Possibilities of structural change and the difficulties in implementing it
  • What does sustainable growth actually mean and how it can be introduced on local level