‘Harnessing Public-Private Cooperation to Deliver the New Urban Agenda’

New Urban Agenda

We would like to share with you a copy of the new World Economic Forum report ‘Harnessing Public-Private Cooperation to Deliver the New Urban Agenda’, which was released recently.

The report emphasizes that the future of cities largely depends on the way urbanization is managed and public-private collaboration is leveraged to implement the Habitat III New Urban Agenda and advance sustainable urban development.

New Urban Agenda

In recognition of the new challenges facing cities and the need to reinvigorate the global commitment to sustainable urbanization, the United Nations General Assembly convened the Habitat III conference, the third in the series of United Nations Conferences on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, in Quito, Ecuador, on 17-20 October 2016.

Member States of the General Assembly decided on the following conference objectives:

  • Secure renewed political commitment for sustainable urban development
  • Assess the 1996 Habitat Agenda (Habitat II) accomplishments to date – Address poverty, and identify and address new and emerging challenges

The conference resulted in the adoption of the New Urban Agenda, a concise, focused, forward-looking and action oriented plan that provides a new global strategy on urbanization for the next two decades. The New Urban Agenda embodies three key guiding principles3 (see table below).

New Urban Agenda

Best practice case studies for smart cities

The report includes leading best practice case studies from around the world and we have flagged a few of these case studies below:

• Smart Dubai Office collaboration with the private sector to lay the foundations, UAE on page 36
• Promoting the circular economy concept, Hamburg and Focusing on the “sharing city”, Seoul on page 39
• Transformation in Singapore on page 44
• Enhancements in public procurement to support innovation, Barcelona and Philadelphia on page 46
• Multistakeholder innovation in energy production: Hydrogen Leader City, Fukuoka, Japan page 47
• Comprehensive inception study lays foundation for developing smart and integrated townships in India on page 48
• Smart City promoting community engagement and open data, Dublin, Ireland on page 49
• City resurgence, Pittsburgh on page 51
• Leveraged digital technology to improve educational services, UAE on page 55
• Future Cities Catapult, United Kingdom on page 59

The way forward

The recommended actions in this report appear simple to adopt but are challenging to implement. Cities, the private sector and civil society must work together and proactively play their part to make it happen. The agenda for action for these stakeholders is provided in subsequent table. Every nation is different, with varying needs and requirements, scenarios, political structures, government capabilities and readiness.

Not all the identified actions can be addressed simultaneously or applied equally, so priorities will depend on a city’s unique context and values. Complementing the prioritization, cities must initiate pilots for proof of feasibility to validate the proposed urban frameworks and to gain more experience to better shape outcomes and enable proper scaling.

Prioritizing the recommendations that are most relevant and feasible, governments can do much to attract private-sector investment and build confidence and trust, setting the foundations for long-term, successful public-private cooperation for sustainable urban development.

Have a look at the full report .

*) This article was written by Alice Charles, Cities & Urban Development Expert, Urban Development Lead, World Economic Forum & External Board Member, NAMA

Alice Charles

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