Joined the programme in 2020

Bologna is Italy’s 7th most populous city with a metropolitan area of about one million people and an important agricultural, industrial, financial and transportation hub. With the Cities Changing Diabetes programme, Bologna aims to uncover inequalities in health and strengthen the municipality’s public health efforts.

The diabetes challenge in Bologna


The diabetes prevalence is 6,2% corresponding to about 65.000 people in the metropolitan city.


Prevalence of obesity is 10,6% corresponding to more than 100.000 people living with obesity.


of children aged 8-9 are overweight or live with obesity.

The Cities Changing Diabetes in Bologna would like to map the social determinants of health and other factors responsible for driving the incidence of type 2 diabetes at all ages and in all city districts to uncover inequalities in health. The aim is to ensure high quality of life for its citizens and to link all the activities that the municipality has developed recently regarding public health.

In September 2018, the Public Interinstitutional Board of Health Promotion formalised a Memorandum of Understanding which involved the creation of a “Control Room” and 10 Work Groups focused on planning of interventions in specific areas to promote public and metropolitan health. The groups involve more than 80 professions, including lawyers, engineers, health professional, paramedics, psychologists, educators, teachers, etc. who jointly identified priorities and projects in collaboration with civil society representatives. 

As a result of the Cities Changing Diabetes coalition and the proactivity of the 10 Work Groups, Bologna’s municipality, University and City Local Health Unit in collaboration with Health City Institute have won an important grant by the EU Horizon 2020 programme on Innovative policies for improving citizens’ health and wellbeing  addressing artificial lighting – called ENLIGHTENme.

Another grant will be awarded by the EU Erasmus Plus programme for the project InAble cities, in collaboration with HCI, ANCI and Barcelona, with the main objective to promote physical activity for people 65+ years and living with disabilities. This is expected to start in 2021.


Prevalence of diabetes 2019 (%)1









  • Bologna Capital City
  • Bologna Metropolitan City
  • Italian Municipalities Association - ANCI Emilia Romagna
  •  University of Bologna
  •  Local Health Authority “AUSL of  Bologna”
  • Local Hospital Health Authority “IRCSS Sant’Orsola of Bologna”
  • Observatory CINECA ARNO
  • Italian Society For The Study Of Diabetes – SID Emilia Romagna
  • Italian Association Of Clinical Diabetologists –AMD Emilia Romagna
  • Italian Society of Clinical Pediatric Endos – SIEDP
  • Italian Society of General Practitioners – SIMG Emilia Romagna
  • People with Diabetes’ association- FeDER
  • Third sector/volunteer- VolaBo
  • National Institute of statistics – ISTAT
  • Centre for outcome research and clinical epidemiology - CORESARCH
  • Parliamentary Intergroup on QoL in Cities
  • Institute for Competitiveness – ICOM
  • Censis foundation
  • IBPO foundation