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Bringing the Struggle for Localization to the High Level Political Forum

25 June 2018

The High Level Political Forum 2018 (HLPF), convened under the auspices of ECOSOC, is the main platform for the review of the 2030 Agenda, and its sixth edition will be taking place from 9 to 18 July in New York. With the overall theme of "Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies", the HLPF is reviewing several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), among them Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. Goal 11 is the first decidedly urban goal, which represents a key achievement for our constituency and a chance to lead the transition towards sustainable and resilient societies at the subnational level.

The Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments, facilitated by UCLG, will bring a delegation of over 250 people, including President of UCLG and President of the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) Parks Tau;  Joke Schauvliege, Minister for Environment, Nature and Agriculture of Flanders (Belgium), and  Co-Chair of nrg4SD;  Ashok Sridharan, Mayor of Bonn, President of ICLEI, and over 70 mayors and presidents from cities and regions. The GTF will be co-organizing, in collaboration with UNDESA, UN-Habitat and the Local2030 network, the Local and Regional Governments’ Forum on 16 July. The Forum will provide an unprecedented opportunity to call for the inclusion of the perspective of the constituency of local and regional governments in the assessment of the global Agendas, particularly by exploring the role of Local and Regional Governments in the implementation and follow-up of the 2030 Agenda.

Local and regional governments’ delegation at the HLPF

As part of its follow-up and review mechanisms, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development encourages member states to “conduct regular and inclusive reviews of progress at the national and sub-national levels".  These voluntary national reviews (VNRs) aim to facilitate the sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, with a view to accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The VNRs also seek to strengthen policies and institutions of governments and to mobilize multi-stakeholder support and partnerships for the implementation of the SDGs.

The delegation of the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments will present, during the 2018 HLPF, our second report on the localization of the SDGs from the Local and Regional Governments' perspective, analyzing the impact of localization on institutional relationships between different levels of governance and the role of local and regional governments in the definition of each country's VNR.

The Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments and Local 2030 will co-host the Local2030: Local Action for Global Commitments Special Event on July 17 to explore the challenges and opportunities local leaders face with respect to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals. Building on the Local and Regional Forum Discussions from 16 July, it will focus on concrete solutions to accelerate local action, with an emphasis on finance, data, local government capacities in humanitarian and conflict settings, and climate action and clean energy.  Participants will include representatives of national governments, local governments, the private sector, civil society, academia, and UN leadership.

Did the international community #Listen2Cities?

The #Listen2Cities campaign has proven to be incredibly successful in raising awareness for the role that local and regional governments need to have a seat at the global table. Now that local and regional governments are, slowly but surely, taking strides and achieving these seats in the global decision-making process, time has come to rethink what lies ahead.

During the preparatory meeting that will take place on July 15, members and partners of the Global Taskforce will set the scene for the High-Level segment of the HLPF, and discuss what is at stake for the constituency of local and regional governments. Said meeting will also contain a special session centering on the #MakeTheShift campaign presenting the Barcelona Declaration for the Right to Housing.


Further information