Cities: Drivers of Sustainable Development

No challenge could be of greater global significance. And yet, local stakeholders and leaders have today become the principal drivers of change in sustainable development and the fight against climate change, to a far greater extent than national governments.

In 2015, the United Nations (UN) directly recognized cities as key players in achieving its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The UN Paris Climate Change Conference and the New Urban Agenda have also highlighted their vital role.

The XII Metropolis Congress, which is set to take place in Montreal from June 19 to 22, will be an opportunity to raise the bar and find new pathways for local elected officials and experts to drive the transition to more sustainable societies forward.

A gathering of the most prominent leaders

No fewer than 1,000 delegates and four key international networks—Metropolis, ICLEI–Local Governments for Sustainability, C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group and the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy—will come together for the high point of the Congress: a major plenary to delve into the theme “Together for a more sustainable society: Driving the transition forward.”

Notable voices in the discussions will be Mayors Denis Coderre of Montreal, Anne Hidalgo of Paris, Célestine Ketcha Courtès of Bangangté and Mohamid Sefiani, of Chefchaouen.

Throughout the week, experts, academics, elected officials and other professionals from the urban world will analyze and discuss the achievements of numerous major cities in transition to draw lessons for the future.

A range of solutions

How can buildings be made even more energy-efficient? What can best practices in municipal water and waste management teach us? Can partnerships with Enterprise Cities be strengthened to innovate and drive the green shift forward? These are just some of the questions to be addressed during the Congress’s moderated discussions.

Simply put, local cities and leaders absolutely have a unique and crucial role to play in building a more sustainable world. From June 19 to 22, these innovators will join forces in Montreal to establish how best to play that role.