Program

Browse through the four days of the event by clicking on the arrows. Event will be held From May 18th to May 21th

Click here to download a PDF version of the program

  • Statutory meetings

  • Thematic sessions

  • Political plenary sessions

  • Real-life experiences on the urban ground

  • Social events

Monday 18 May

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18/05/2015 - 09:00 to 10:30

The METROPOLIS Women International Network, introduced in Berlin in 2005, has the aim of creating an international space for exchange and co-operation between women holding political office, whether elected or appointed, executives, managers, and professionals operating at a local and metropolitan level. It has the following objectives:

  • Improving the representation and leadership of women in local authorities;
  • Facilitating the dissemination of experiences and good practices relating to gender equality;
  • Providing gender awareness in international debates.

The meeting was co-ordinated by Montserrat Pallarès and Mireia Zapata, both from the METROPOLIS Secretariat General.

The meeting was presided by Mme. Cathérine Zouzoua, Deputy Chair of the Africa region, who opened the session by delegation of the Chair, Francina Vila, making reference to the activities carried out by the Network, and the main challenges. Subsequently the policies and activities that the Network proposes to carry out from 2015 to 2017 were listed. This session also debated the organization of the 4th ‘Dynamic Cities Need Women’ World Forum in Latin America, which is to be held at the end of November 2015 and which will focus on gender mainstreaming in public policies. Later there was a presentation on the internal regulations which contain the latest resolutions of the Network.

The meeting was closely linked to the ‘METROPOLIS Women: Gender mainstreaming in public policies’ workshop, which was held afterwards. In addition, the concept of gender mainstreaming was tackled, consisting in taking into account the distinct realities of women and men in society, and designing adaptive or responsive actions in order to achieve equality between the two sexes. The aim is not simply to create and implement actions that are specifically aimed at women, but rather to design, implement, and assess all policies through the lens of identifying and envisaging their repercussions on women and men. Thus, the aim is to promote the inclusion of the gender perspective in the organization, planning, and implementation of policies.

At the meeting, emphasis was also placed on the central role played by the METROPOLIS Women network, not just with the aforementioned workshop, but also with the 2015-2017 METROPOLIS Action Plan, in the Declaration of the Association for Habitat III, and in the ‘Connecting the Dots’ workshop. Likewise, some of the representatives participated as speakers at some of the Thematic and Plenary Sessions (‘Community Leadership Experiences’ and ‘Voice of the Mayors’).

It was suggested that some of the ideas and proposals should be considered, such as:

  • Every year, the Network ought to focus on one issue every year in order to present a programme to METROPOLIS on the chosen subject, which would allow it to work better, instead of tackling too many issues all at once.
  • There was acknowledgement of the effort being made to recruit new representatives in the Latin America region, and consideration was given to the need to interact and add participants who are not necessarily civil servants in women-related areas in their cities.
  • There was a proposal to make the Network more visible, and the example was given of applying for international co-operation funds, or promoting local work with women at international events.
  • Consideration was given to the role of women and their contribution to the whole process of change. There were comments on the increase of women's participation in political, sporting, and other spheres.

Towards the end of the meeting, the commitments undertaken were reviewed. These were as follows: the revision of the Women and Cities Document until the end of May; the decision on the city where the ‘Dynamic Cities Need Women’ Forum is to be held; the closure of the regional agendas, and the continuation of the work on the Habitat III Document.

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18/05/2015 - 10:30 to 11:00
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18/05/2015 - 11:00 to 12:30

In the year in which Beijing+20 is being celebrated, it is worth recalling that the agreements reached within the framework of the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action included the application of a gender analysis to all programmes and interventions aimed at the equality and empowerment of women, the gender mainstreaming of actions, and gender analysis in the design and application of development programmes of a sectoral nature.

Gender mainstreaming is deemed to be a strategy that has the aim of introducing policies on equality in a mainstream way in all policies and programmes.

Although the Platform for Action envisaged gender equality in all aspects of life, twenty years later no country has been able to complete this programme, and difficulties in its implementation have been encountered.

The workshop was carried out within the framework of the priorities defined as part of the METROPOLIS Women network with regard to:

  • Emphasizing the inclusion of gender awareness in the debates and activities of METROPOLIS;
  • Encouraging and promoting Urban Development that is sensitive to gender issues in all of its aspects: social, economic, cultural, and environmental.

It was carried out in two blocks. The first part consisted in explaining the concept of gender mainstreaming and its impact on local policies and the welfare of citizens. Subsequently, trends were examined at an international level and practical cases were used to visualize the applicability of gender mainstreaming. The moderator was Montserrat Pallarès, co-ordinator of the Women Network and head of Institutional Relations at METROPOLIS, and the following cases were discussed::

  • Barcelona: 'The city's strategy for the promotion of gender mainstreaming' by Estel Crusellas, co-ordinator of the Centre for Equality and Resources for the Women of the Barcelona City Council.
  • Brussels: 'Implementation of the gender-mainstreaming strategy' by Bianca Debaets, Secretary of State for equal opportunities of the Brussels Capital Region.
  • Buenos Aires: 'Women as protagonists of the transformation of their habitat' by Raquel Munt, Social Inclusion Director-General of the Housing and Inclusion Secretariat of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires.

The second part of the workshop was moderated by Estel Crusellas with presentations followed by a participatory format with questions from the audience. It was an open activity which served to collect ideas that would contribute to promoting gender mainstreaming in our cities and the Association.

During the discussion, items raised included the gender perspective in budgetary matters, the need for the creation of educational programmes, the training of civil servants (especially in local government), the need for a legal framework, and awareness needs. In all cases, it is crucial to involve the whole of society in this matter.

Furthermore, the session allowed the conclusion to be reached that the crux of the discussion is to be found in the processes and institutions. The problem posed by the METROPOLIS Women network resides in gender differences, and how they are perceived and remedied. The first step is to acknowledge the problem in order to then apply the appropriate methodologies. These are not the same for all situations and locations; policies need to be adapted and must be flexible. The central challenge is to standardize processes.

The Network also actively participated in the Board of Directors Meeting, during which the new 2015-2017 METROPOLIS Action Plan was approved, which includes gender mainstreaming. During this session, the Network expressed its interest in a higher level of respect being paid to those contributions featuring gender awareness in the document to be submitted by METROPOLIS at the Habitat III Conference in 2016. Furthermore, in order to make the work of the Network more visible in the drafting and approval of a declaration for the World Conference, Buenos Aires and Barcelona represented the Network in the PrepCity session.

News: "The importance of gender mainstreaming in local policies: the central issue for the women network at the annual meeting"

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18/05/2015 - 11:00 to 12:30

 

METROPOLIS Youth is the Association’s action programme which looks to the future in order to tackle the issues that affect people’s lives in the world’s major cities. Led by the city of Mashhad, METROPOLIS Youth brings together representatives of the new generations that make a difference to their cities, and connects them at a worldwide level.

METROPOLIS Youth has the following aims, amongst others: to examine the different participation models for young people set up by the member cities; to give visibility to good practices; to contribute to the debate on intervention in urban matters, and to empower them as future leaders of the major metropolises.

During the first part of the session, Hossein Kashiri, leader of METROPOLIS Youth, gave a presentation on the work carried out in his city, Mashhad, in order to involve young people in urban management, in which he set out the contents of the workshop entitled ‘Youth Commitment to Social Development’ carried out in April 2015 as part of the programmes of  METROPOLIS Training.

he second part of the workshop was organized as a round-table discussion, in which the participants were able to set out, in a very personal manner, their experience with various kinds of youth participation in the governance of major cities. Amongst the cases debated, the participants discussed programmes launched by the local authorities (such as Berlin, Buenos Aires, and Mashhad) for them to develop their professional careers in local government. Other significant issues discussed in the conversations were the growing participation of the representatives of the new generations in metropolitan legislative bodies, and the importance of listening to their voices through initiatives that combine perspectives on the future of cities with sport, artistic expression, and sustainability (experiences carried out, for example, in Medellin and Buenos Aires).

This workshop offered a dynamic space for the exchange of experiences from different metropolises around the world with the participation of young people in urban management. There were short videos, round-table discussions, and a question and answer session. It was aimed at young people with an impact on the transformation of their city, and at persons who maintain a recognized dialogue with local authorities. Within this framework, the profile of the participants was technical, political, and administrative.

4
 
18/05/2015 - 11:00 to 12:30

Participants:
  • Alain Le Saux, Secretary-General of METROPOLIS
  • Rahmatouca Sow Dieye, Africa Regional Secretary (Dakar)
  • Rovena Negreiros, South America Regional Secretary (Sao Paulo)
  • Barbara Berninger, Europe Regional Secretary (Berlin); Eugène Zapata, North America Regional Secretary (Mexico)
  • Zhou Jian (Romeo), Deputy Director of the Multilateral Co-operation Working Group of the International Affairs Office of the Government of the Municipality of Guangzhou, in representation of the Asia Regional Secretary (Liu Baochun)
  • Agnès Bickart and Teresa Oliver, from the METROPOLIS Secretariat General
  • Frédérique Roussel, Head of External Relations and International Networks of the Île-de-France Region
  • Felipe de Jesús Gutiérrez, Urban Development and Housing Secretary of the Government of the City of Mexico
  • Anne Claes, Director of Brussels International and Representative of the Metropolis Treasury
  • Raphael Camargo, International Cooperation Advisor to the Sao Paulo State Government
  • Jan Erasmus, Strategy and International Relations Director of the City of Johannesburg
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18/05/2015 - 12:30 to 13:30

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18/05/2015 - 13:30 to 17:00

In its 30 years, METROPOLIS has organized hundreds of events including congresses, annual meetings, international forums, training workshops, meetings and technical visits. It has also produced innumerable publications and communication campaigns, and developed digital platforms that facilitate cooperation and the joint work of different local administrations, connecting them globally for an effective exchange of knowledge, in addition to fostering collaborations with civil society, the academic sphere and the private sector.

None of this work would have been possible without the collaboration of people from different parts of the world who have put their talent, time and energy into METROPOLIS over these decades. As well as the professionals at the Secretariat-General in Barcelona, the Association has the fundamental support of its members. Some of them comply with statutory roles, and representatives of the member-cities’ staff accompany the work of the Secretariat-General, contributing with their own local urban experiences and new project proposals. METROPOLIS also enjoys the valuable collaboration of volunteers from other sectors of society.

However, all of this broad and copious body of knowledge is still not sufficiently shared amongst these parties. Within this framework arises the proposal of “Connecting the Dots”, to generate more effective and innovative ways to work together, which facilitate or boost opportunities for interaction between METROPOLIS members and partners. METROPOLIS brought together over 50 representatives from cities and partner organizations in a technical and dynamic workshop oriented towards action, with the aim of exploring the opportunities for existing synergies through the various points of the current functional structure of the Association.

The workshop was designed in conjunction with Toni Blanco, a consultant on innovation in administration and an expert on collaborative work, who was also the moderator. The workshop sought to attain four collective objectives:

  • Acquiring know-how on all of the activities of METROPOLIS;
  • Connecting the leaders of the main activities of METROPOLIS;
  • Learning new strategies for collaborative work and the creation of value;
  • Promoting the implementation of the 2015-2017 METROPOLIS Action Plan in a more dynamic and participatory manner.

The activity began with an introduction by the Secretary-General, Alain Le Saux. This was followed by ‘The Dots’, a presentation on the current activities of METROPOLIS and their structures. Subsequently, there was a co-operation exercise, the main theme of which was the learning of collaborative working strategies as a network. Lastly, the participants exchanged ideas.

                                                                                                           

 

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18/05/2015 - 20:00 to 22:00

The Opening Reception was held in the Salón Dorado of the Legislative Palace of the City of Buenos Aires.

Present were the international delegates as well as members of the diplomatic corps with accreditation in Argentina, legislators from the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires, civil servants from the Legislative Palace, and other special guests.

Cristian Ritondo, First Deputy Chair of the Legislature, welcomed all those present and highlighted that the themes of the gathering (Inclusion, Innovation, and Sustainability) were the same as those that guide the administration of the City of Buenos Aires, as well as being subjects for the new legislative programme. Likewise, he pointed out the significance of the event in order to be able to share experiences and thoughts with experts from all continents.

The reception continued with a tango performance.

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Tuesday 19 May

All day
 
 
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19/05/2015 - 08:00 to 14:30

Organized by: GCBA and METROPOLIS

Meeting point at 7:45 AM: NH City & Tower Hotel, Bolivar, 160

 

This experience had the aim of exploring various urban-transformation policies focussing on social inclusion and citizen participation. The Government of the City of Buenos Aires has determined to reduce the inequality that exists between the south and the north of the city, with the main objective of transforming the area through the Southern Zone Regeneration Programme. For this purpose, priority is given to activities such as: interventions to improve the living conditions of residents; increasing access to culture, mobility, and transport; strengthening security, health, and education.

Likewise, in order to achieve this transformation, the Government of the City of Buenos Aires has pursued the Integrated Urban Project which allows the public and private resources and efforts to be directed and co-ordinated towards a particular zone, tailoring the projects to the specific needs of that zone, in a way that involves community participation.

The following activities took place during the walkabout:

City Tower

Tour of the tower and climb to the viewing gallery (at a height of 176 m), from where the main aspects of the Southern Zone Regeneration Programme were described in detail, along with the activities and the building works. From this high vantage point, it was possible to have a complete overview of the transformation of the area.

During this activity, Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, Head of the Council of Ministers; Daniel Chain, Minister of Urban Development; Marina Klemensiewicz, Housing and Inclusion Secretary, and Francisco Irarrazával, Deputy Secretary for Sports, explained the scope of the Integrated Urban Project for Comuna 8, which includes, for example, the 2018 Youth Olympic Games, which will boost the growth and human development of the people who live there.

Before climbing to the top of the tower, the participants were able to observe and interact with persons manning a number of stands:

  • Inclusion and Development of Opportunities Nucleus (NIDO): this is a community team set up to promote social inclusion in the most vulnerable neighbourhoods though the development of their potential.
  • Housing and Inclusion Secretariat (SECHI): seeks to promote urbanization and social inclusion in informal settlements, temporary housing units, and social housing blocks.
  • Healthy Stations: these are places for the prevention of illness and the promotion of health, where nurses and nutritionists carry out basic checks with the aim of promoting healthy habits.

The guests were also able to observe and participate in some of the recreational activities that took place at the base of the City Tower. Out of these we may highlight those of an artistic nature (community painting) and sporting nature (basketball). This latter activity consisted in an exhibition of the 3x3 format, in which young people play in two teams with three players each. The demonstration was overseen by and received organizational support from the International Basketball Federation (FIBA).

Soldati Housing Estate (CHS)

Located in the Comuna 8 neighbourhood, the second stop on the walkabout was the CHS, which covers 19 hectares and is composed of over 100 buildings (3,200 dwellings) with around 13,000 inhabitants. There it was possible to see the change that has been generated through the Social Housing Administration. Amongst the main transformations have been the water-proofing, rendering, and painting of the building blocks; the Metrobus station at Avenida Roca; the construction of the Social Centre, and the construction and refurbishment of squares, play areas, sports grounds and meeting and rest areas, which are inclusion portals of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, amongst others. During this stop, the guests were also able to view sporting activities (a football match) and musical activities (folk dancing).

Metropolitan Design Centre (CMD)

Visit and introduction to the policies which are developed there and a meeting with its direct beneficiaries. The CMD, which responds to the Creative Economy Department of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, was created in 2001, and its premise is to be a reference-point for design and innovation, promoting and strengthening the interface between the community of design professionals, businesses and institutions, and the system for the generation of value. This promotes creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit as pillars of the economic development of the city. This is of strategic importance to the city, which structures its efforts in this regard around the following key points:

  • Promotion of the Creative Industries through Creative Districts: seeking to promote certain industries by prioritizing areas which have historically been relegated, mostly in the Southern Zone.
  • Encouragement of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit, in order to generate employment and reduce poverty through development based on innovation. For this purpose, there are policies such as the Training and Inclusion for Work (FIT) Programme, aimed at assisting people with employment difficulties by way of training and financial support. Work is carried out with non-governmental institutions in order to offer training in various trades, and entrepreneurial spirit is encouraged through subsidies for micro-ventures.

Those who attended were also able to enjoy a display put on in conjunction with the Ministry of Social Development of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, which showcased the work of the emerging designers, who likewise modelled with their creations. Furthermore, the audience was also able to watch the printing of the first 3D sustainable guitar in Latin America carried out at the CMD LAB. Also, they witnessed the dynamics of learning and work through some of the courses which were being held at that time. Lastly, the walkabout allowed them to view the exhibition space supplied to makers, manufacturers, hobbyists, artists, and artisans who are exploring new forms and new technologies.

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19/05/2015 - 14:30 to 15:00
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19/05/2015 - 15:00 to 16:00

The event took place on Tuesday 19 May at the Main Auditorium of La Usina del Arte. The ceremony was held from 15:00 to 16:30 hours.

The act commenced with a performance by the ‘Agrupación Cultural San Martín de Porres’ percussion and dance group from the Bajo Flores quarter, which forms part of the Community Living Culture Programme of the Housing and Inclusion Department (SECHI), which has the aim of promoting the Afro-Peruvian culture in Buenos Aires.

The formal opening was attended by Mauricio Macri, Head Governor of the City of Buenos Aires, and Jean Paul Huchon, Chairman of the Île-de-France Regional Council and Chairman of METROPOLIS, who welcomed the participants, including members of the diplomatic corps, mayors, civil servants, experts in urban issues, and special guests. During the ceremony, a video was played with greetings from Kadir Topbas, Chairman of Cities and Local Authorities United (CLAU) and Mayor of Istanbul.

Subsequently, there was an informal press conference, with reporters from national and international news agencies in attendance.

 

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19/05/2015 - 16:00 to 16:30
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19/05/2015 - 16:00 to 16:30

 
 
19/05/2015 - 16:30 to 18:00

ROOM:  Auditorio principal
1st Thematic Session on Inclusion
Organized by: Metropolis and Government of the City of Buenos Aires

 

CONTEXT & CONTENTS

Sport is currently a superb instrument for integral human development. In addition to its potential as an educational tool and for conveying moral values, it is linked to other areas such as health, urban development, the economy, and international awareness. The sports policy of a city ought to include its social integrating aspect, encouraging the participation of citizens through suitable programmes and spaces such as schools, clubs, federations, and other bodies.

Practising a sport has a social and territorial dimension, which is understood as being a public policy for countering urban segregation. The first refers to sport as a way in which to promote solidarity or to favour sectors of the population who have some difficulty in accessing sports facilities, or schools, or the labour market. Furthermore, as these activities are normally practised in public spaces and require the improvement of sports infrastructure, the recycling of urban land has been promoted through the refurbishment of derelict sites in order to encourage the community to give them a new role.

This session was held on 19 May from 16:30 to 18:00 hours in the Main Auditorium of La Usina del Arte. It was moderated by Francisco Irarrazábal, Deputy Secretary for Sport of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires. Each speaker was given the opportunity to present a particular experience, followed by questions and dialogue with the audience. Those speaking were:

  • Horacio Muratore, Chairman of FIBA, presented 'The social and urban impact of the basquetball 3x3 FIBA project”'.

  • Mpho Parks Tau, Mayor of Johannesburg, talked about 'The social legacy of the 2010 Football World Cup'.

  • Iolanda Latorre, Manager of Barcelona Sports Institute, of the Barcelona City Council, talked about 'The Social Inclusion and Cohesion Network of Sport'.

  • Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montreal, talked about 'The new sports policy in the city'.

  • David Mora, Director of the National Institute of Sports, Physical Education and Recreation Institute (INDER) talked about 'Sport and Recreation in the Social Transformation of Medellin'.

During the session, we heard of the specific experiences of cities which managed to transform their urban landscape and value and involve their populations through activities and sporting events. Some examples of successful projects were: the Basquetball 3x3 initiative, the ‘Physically active Montreal’ plan, or the ‘Adrenalina’ Programme, amongst others. The importance of attracting large-scale international sporting events in order to transform the reality of cities was also highlighted, such as the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, the 2010 South American Games in Medellin, or the organization of the first Football World Cup in Africa in 2010.

The various presentations all agreed that team sports contribute to educating and reinforcing values such as friendship, respect, and confidence, which are fundamental for the functioning of society and peaceful cohabitation. Furthermore, the common denominator of all of these experiences was the attainment of positive results with regard to the inclusion of citizens and the improvement of the quality of life through the fight against sedentary lifestyles and the promotion of healthy habits. Thus, sport is seen as a successful tool in social and urban change given that it promotes integration, social cohesion, the consolidation of interpersonal relationships, the training of young people, and the generation of employment. For this reason, it is essential for cities to be able to bring sport to the community from school age.

4
 
19/05/2015 - 16:30 to 18:00

ROOM:  Microcine

 

1st Thematic Session on Innovation

Organized by: Metropolis and Government of the City of Buenos Aires 

The session focussed on the beneficiaries of implementing public policies for innovation in METROPOLIS cities. Cities have been greatly influenced by the social and economic changes resulting from globalization, the transformation of production models, and new technologies. The traditional models for growth and global positioning are being replaced by models based on the collaborative and knowledge-based economy, models which promote sustainable and human development, based on social and disruptive innovation. This model of development gives a central role to the creative and cultural industries, social initiatives, and the collaborative economy. As such, it is necessary to focus on specific actions in order to be able to boost this economy, so that it contributes more to the generation of employment and business.

Under the moderation of Mariano Mayer, Entrepreneurs Director-General of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, the following experiences were shared:

•    ‘Strategic decisions for a creative city’ by Félix Manito, Director of the Kreanta Foundation from Barcelona.
•    'Entrepreneur strategy with a social vision' by Jorge 'Yoyo' Riva, social entrepreneur from Buenos Aires.
•    'Policies for innovation: results and beneficiaries' by Yue Chaoyang, Deputy Head of the Zhi Gong Chinese Party, Guangzhou Committee.
•    'Multi-stakeholder collaboration for social housing' by João Octaviano Machado Neto, Executive Secretary for Public-Private Partnerships of the São Paulo State Housing Department.

During the speeches, the issue of local public policies for the promotion of the creative economy was tackled (support for entrepreneurs, the encouragement of business-friendly environments, business mentality, the creation of business incubators, the offer of training, etc.). It was agreed that in order to boost these sorts of economies, qualities such as a vision of the future, capacity to attract talent, and international co-operation are all necessary, amongst others. Meanwhile, it was pointed out that the keys that determine the creative leadership of a city are associated with factors such as education, innovation, diversity, inclusion, and values. 

4
 
19/05/2015 - 16:30 to 18:00

Sustainability Session I

Organized by: Metropolis and Government of the City of Buenos Aires

 

The population growth of the major cities makes it necessary to take decisions on urban planning that take into account the challenges linked to the use of energy and water, gas emissions, the use of land, the prevention of pollution, and the regulation of traffic, amongst others. In this situation, the local authorities must implement sustainable growth policies which aim to offer solutions to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change.

With the aim of sharing successful actions with which to tackle this problem, the session was moderated by Juan Carlos Villalonga, Chairman of the Environmental Protection Agency of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires. The following presentations were given:

  • 'The Sendai framework and urban resilience' by Ricardo Mena, Head of the Americas Regional Office of the UNISDR (United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction).
  • 'Methodology for resilience and adaptation of cities to climate change' by Víctor Said, the architect and urban planner of the Île-de-France Region (IAU - IDF) Planning and Urban Development Institute, a specialist in the cases of Alexandria, Casablanca, and Tunis.
  • 'The Future Urban Masterplan in the Barcelona Metropolis and climate change policies' by Eduard Saurina, Management Associate of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area
  • 'Signatory cities of the METROPOLIS No-Regrets Charter by Paul James, Professor of Globalization and Cultural Diversity of the Culture and Society Institute of the University of Western Sydney (UWS).

At the meeting, the challenges and drawbacks associated with climate change and natural disasters were debated, affecting many metropolises around the world, with particular reference to the cases of Alexandria, Barcelona, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Casablanca, Johannesburg, Rabat, and Tunis. There was reference to the 2009 Johannesburg ‘Plan for Adapting to Climate Change’, and the Law on Adapting to and Mitigating Climate Change approved in Buenos Aires in 2011, as examples of plans which have been successful in tackling these problems.

Large urban areas will continue to grow and receive more people over the coming decades and will have to tackle important challenges related to the energy supply, greenhouse gas emissions reduction, road traffic regulation and integrated water resource management, among many others. In this scenario, local governments have a crucial role to play with respect to climate change and must implement sustainable growth policies with a multidisciplinary focus. This involves accommodating the green, regenerative and socially sustainable economy into the economic model, making it a strategic objective for major metropolises. They are the cities which can best offer fast, flexible, balanced and creative solutions to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change.

4
 
19/05/2015 - 16:30 to 18:00

The meeting discussed the financial report on the 2014 budget, examining the performance of the budget and considering income, expenditure, and reserves, amongst others aspects.

Participants:

  • Jean-Paul Huchon
  • Alain Le Saux
  • Felip Roca
  • Amal Benazzouz
  • Frédérique Roussel
  • Xavier Tiana
  • Mònica Batlle
  • Jean-Luc Vanraes
  • Anne Claes
  • Sophie Willaumez
  • Geoffrey Makhubo
  • Zhou Jian
  • Barbara Berninger
  • Georg Schmidtgen
  • Pierre Desrochers
  • Rovena Negreiros
  • Helena Monteiro
  • Cathérine Zouzoua
  • Eugène Zapata
  • Hossein Kashiri
  • Joon Ho An
  • Jaime Fuentealba
  • Rahmatouca Sou Dieye
  • Montserrat Pallarès
  • Teresa Oliver
  • Agnès Bickart
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Wednesday 20 May

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20/05/2015 - 08:00 to 09:00

Meeting point: NH City & Tower

10
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 09:00 to 10:30

ORGANIZED BY: METROPOLIS AND BUENOS AIRES CITY GOVERNMENT

 

CONTEXT

The session tackled the political and technical aspects of the themes of Inclusion, Innovation, and Sustainability, highlighting their central role in local public policies, as well as the importance of integrated urban management and genuine participation by citizens.

 

Inclusion
Citizen participation is a fundamental element of local management, lifting the levels of citizens’ skills and empowering local people to engage in, decide on and plan their city together with the local authorities. In this context, addressing the problems of poverty and urban inequality must be a priority to enhance fairness by designing social and physical architecture that can impact equal opportunities.

Innovation
The concept of innovation worked on in Live the City covers both technological change, via information technologies and digital solutions, and improvements in public administration processes and models – urban and open Innovation – which considers inserting cities in the knowledge economy and that of the common good, the main asset of which is human capital. This concept embraces all measures that can generate an ecosystem favorable to innovation and entrepreneurs.

Sustainability
Live the City proposes a holistic perspective on sustainable and balanced urban development which considers social, economic and environmental factors as well as cultural ones. Urban environmental policies have to explore solutions that make a decided contribution to the fight against climate change. This necessarily involves tackling the green economy concept, which includes the development of renewable energies; a clear commitment to pedestrianization and the implementation of zero or low carbon-emitting public transportation; the protection of natural spaces and environmental services; and waste management with a reduced environmental impact, among other strategies.

 

CONTENT

The introduction was by Daniel Chain, who emphasized the importance of the central themes of the gathering for the construction of more liveable cities and their specific impact on people’s quality of life; in other words, the importance of urban planning that tackles these themes from a holistic perspective. Subsequently, the other speakers shared details of the way in which these issues are dealt with in their own cities, with specific examples of policies which have been implemented, as well as the identification of lessons and learning experiences.

Michael Müller structured his presentation around the following question: How can we achieve progress in our cities in order to improve people’s quality of life with the help of technology and good political management? In order to demonstrate that change is possible, he explained the implementation of the system of interactive maps in order to verify wheelchair access in the city, and an application for electronic devices that allows people to check not just the departure times for bus and train services, but also how full these transport services are.

Pierre Desrochers emphasized the need for the creation of spaces where citizens can express themselves and make decisions in order to strengthen the commitment and the integration of all population sectors and generations. For this purpose, he gave the example of various formats which stimulate participation, such as municipal or neighbourhood councils.

For his part, Daniel Chain gave examples of the policies which have led Buenos Aires to be considered a healthy, cultural, habitable, and integrating city. From amongst these actions he highlighted the Green City initiative, the Urban Development and Recovery Plan, and the improvement of various central thoroughfares as part of the Microcentro Plan.

With regard to participatory planning, Daniela Chacón set out its meaning, its implementation, and its advantages, whilst the representative from the city of Mexico, Felipe de Jesús Gutiérrez, demonstrated the efforts made in order to achieve integrated urban renewal based on habitability and participation, with projects such as Interurban Trains, the Health City, the Sports City, and the new CDMX airport, amongst others. 

 

The speakers agreed that, in order for all inhabitants to be able to enjoy a city, it had to be re-organized, and that investment, development, and equality needed to be encouraged. Beyond this, the main point of agreement was in relation to the importance of listening to citizens, i.e. making them participate in collective decisions. Cities need to be humanized, and for this is it essential to create spaces for social integration backed by modern, high-quality infrastructure, that improves the competitiveness and productivity of the economy. In conclusion, the presentations insisted on the idea expressed by Minister Chain that ‘Cities are for living in, not surviving in’.

 

 

AGENDA

9 am – 9.15 am: Introduction by Daniel Chain about the importance of the meeting’s central themes (inclusion, sustainability, innovation) for the construction of more livable cities and their specific impact on the quality of people’s lives. Importance of a form of city planning that approaches these themes from a holistic focus, not as independent work areas.

9.15 am – 10 am: Speakers’ presentations (approx. 7 mins per speaker, with or without PPT at the speaker’s choice) on the way the central themes are approached in their cities, with specific examples of policies/actions carried forward and the identification of lessons, points learned and/or failed experiences which they learnt from in order to improve.

10 am – 10.15 am: Comments or questions from the moderator (D. Chain) to the speakers regarding specific aspects of the presentations.

10.15 am – 10.30 am: Questions from the public to the panelists and close.

3
 
 
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 10:30 to 11:00
11
 
 
20/05/2015 - 11:00 to 12:30

Organized by: METROPOLIS, UCLG, FMDV and Cities Alliance

CONTEXT

The session was organized around a series of questions directed towards the political representatives of METROPOLIS with regard to the past, present, and future of the major metropolises in relation to three highly-significant events for urban communities: the UN Conference for the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, in September 2015 in New York; the United Nations Conference on Climate Change, to be held in Paris in December 2015, and the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Development, Habitat III, to be held in Quito in October 2016.

The questions around which the debate was structured were as follows:

  1. How do the major metropolises participate in the development goals post-2015?
  2. How can and should the major metropolises tackle climate change?
  3. What is the role of the major metropolises in the worldwide commitment to sustainable urban development?

Divided into three modules, each Mayor (or equivalent) tackled one of the questions on the basis of their personal experience leading their city, in order to highlight their own personal voice and leadership. The session allowed the main political representatives to set out what had motivated them to get involved in the administration of their city, the progress made so far, and their vision for the urban future. This format served to establish the position of the political leaders in the face of the aforementioned upcoming events with worldwide significance, which will have a considerable impact on how urban development, urbanization, and the life of citizens in the 21st century is viewed.

The first module was moderated by Jean-François Habeau, Executive Director of the Global Fund for Cities Development (FMDV), and his central theme was the development goals post-2015. Mpho Parks Tau, Mayor of Johannesburg; Bianca Debaets, Secretary of State for Equal Opportunities of the Capital of the Brussels Region; Helen Fernández, Acting Metropolitan Mayor of Caracas; Felipe de Jesús Gutiérrez, Mexico D.F. Urban Development and Housing Secretary; and Mónica Fein, Municipal Mayor of Rosario, all spoke.

The second module, for which the main theme was climate change, was moderated by Alain Le Saux, Secretary-General of METROPOLIS, and Jean Paul Huchon, President of METROPOLIS and of the Île-de-France Region; Pierre Desrochers, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the City of Montreal; Claudio Orrego, Governor of the Santiago Metropolitan Region; José Fortunati, Mayor of Porto Alegre, and Ana Olivera, Mayor of Montevideo, all set out their points of view on the issue. 

The third and last module dealt with sustainable urban development and was co-ordinated by Josep Roig, Secretary-General of UCLG. Participating in the debate were Michael Müller, Mayor of Berlin; Yang Jiancheng, Deputy Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Guangzhou Committee; Edson Aparecido, Secretary-General of Sao Paulo State; and Daniela Chacón, Deputy Mayor of the Quito Metropolitan District.

A consensus emerged from the discussions with regard to the duty of the international community to listen to and understand the concerns of the mayors, especially those of the most populated cities in the world. These local political leaders embody the message of millions of citizens and their daily needs. Issues such as employment, housing, transport, access to education, healthcare, security, and energy are just some of a long list of basic issues.

Mayors have a high level of political responsibility, administering cities, urban conurbations, or metropolitan regions which are considerably more important than some member States of the United Nations, whether because of their population, or the international significance they possess. As such, city mayors (and their equivalents) are becoming leaders when it comes to responding to the challenges facing the planet. However, their role does not appear to be sufficiently recognized in contemporary international relations, which give almost absolute visibility to leaders acting at a national level. Launched in October 2014, the METROPOLIS project entitled ‘Voice of the Mayors’ has the aim of ensuring that the mayors of the major cities are seen and heard, and that their active work in international development is recognized. For this purpose, the written first-hand testimony of the mayors (and their equivalents) is collected, and form part of a collection of publications available in digital and printed formats.

At the end of the session, Jean-Paul Huchon announced that the METROPOLIS Declaration is to be drawn up, with the aim of representing the voice of the major cities at the Habitat III Conference.

 

MODERATORS:

  • Jean François Habeau, Executive Director of the Global fund for cities development (FMDV)
  • Alain Le Saux, METROPOLIS Secretary General
  • Josep Roig, Secretary General of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG)

PARTICIPANTS:

  • Jean Paul Huchon, President of METROPOLIS and the Île-de-France Region
  • Mpho Franklin Parks Tau, Mayor of Johannesburg
  • Michael Müller, Mayor of Berlin
  • Pierre Desrochers, Presidente of the Executive Committee, City of Montreal
  • Yang Jiancheng. Chinese People's Political Consultive Conference Guangzhou Committee (CPPCC GHZ Committee)
  • Claudio Orrego, Mayor of Santiago Metropolitan Region
  • Bianca Debaets, Secretary of State for Equal Opportunity of the Brussels-Capital Region
  • Edson Aparecido. Chief-Secretary of Civil House, State of Sao Paulo
  • José Fortunati, Mayor of Porto Alegre
  • Daniela Chacón, Metropolitan Deputy Mayor of Quito
  • Ana Olivera, Mayor of Montevideo
  • Felipe de Jesús Gutiérrez, Secretary for Urban Development and Housing, Mexico City
  • Helen Fernández, Metropolitan Mayor in charge, Caracas
  • Mónica Fein, Mayor of Rosario
3
 
 
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 12:30 to 14:00
11
 
 
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 14:00 to 15:30

ROOM:  Auditorio principal

 

2nd Thematic Session on Inclusion

Organized by: Metropolis and Government of the City of Buenos Aires 

 

Citizens were the protagonists of this session under the premise that the organization of cohabitation and the creation of policies are not solely in the hands of the civil servants or experts, but also in those of the inhabitants of cities. The main idea was that the political classes should not be considered to be separate from the community, in isolation from each other. On the contrary, it is necessary to build alliances between public intervention and the community, given that only the latter knows what its needs are, and ought to be at the heart of its own social transformation.

The gathering was moderated by Jorge Melguizo (consultant and speaker on public administration, integrated urban projects, and culture) and Mercedes Aranguren (President of the Convivir Foundation). The experiences shared during the session were as follows:

  • 'Abidjan: Modern plant for the transformation of cassava', by Cathérine Zouzoua, councillor for the Abidjan District.
  • 'Barcelona: Experience concerning public spaces and gender from the community leadership perspective' by Estel Crusellas, Coordinator of the Women's Information and Resources Centre (CIRD).
  • 'Agra: Assisting the poorest communities of the suburbs through the smart use of technologies, sustainable social and economic impact, and the interface between the excluded communities and the administration of the city' by Renu Koshla, Director of the Centre for Urban and Regional Excellence (CURE) India.
  • 'Participation of women in the administration of local neighbourhoods' by Ensieh Ghafouri Sharbaf, Policy councillor in Mashhad.
  • Following this there were brief presentations under a “TED” format, which made the session dynamic and exciting. The speakers were:
  • Nelsa Curbelo, an expert in human rights, non-violence, and conflict resolution, from Guayaquil. 
  • Alvaro Jourde, leader of 'Ruwasunchis', a cultural and citizen movement based in a peripheral community of Lima known as Manchay.

Lastly, the evidence of the following community leaders and representatives from Buenos Aires was put forward:

  • Mario, Camilo, and Roxana, members of the 'La Hermandad' Band from Villa 20 de Lugano (who also gave a musical presentation).
  • Sara 'Chachi' Lázzaro, who chairs the Centre 'Luna Bu' for retired people and pensioners in Villa Pueyrredón.
  • Serafina Falagán, Director of the 'Los Ángeles' community canteen, chair of Villa 26 barrio de Barracas, and spokesperson for resettled inhabitants.
  • Fernando Ríos Avillo, from Villa Soldati, member of the project Orchestras and Choirs for Equity of the Ministry of Education of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires.
  • Mario Delgado, who after spending seven years living rough, managed to turn his life around and now helps other people to escape from this situation, working with the Operational Department for Integral Assistance for the Homeless.

 
In the first round of presentations, examples were given of projects in which networks of women are at the forefront as the main group involved. Many of these cases are highly significant because they are carried out in places where women are not free or independent, or there is gender inequality. However, they have been able to satisfy their needs, participate in NGOs, or be the brains behind the planning and urban management. Experiences were also described with regard to the poorest communities as the protagonists of programmes that seek to promote them as being responsible for the administration of the city. In this first round of presentations, the main conclusion was how important it is to listen to the community when planning and implementing any interventions. 

Other presentations during this session provided examples of how the agents of community change can be a successful driving force in generating improvements in citizens’ quality of life through local movements focussed on working towards peace, social rights, and inclusion. These are self-organizing phenomena which emerge in the neighbourhoods and which encourage processes of individual development and community empowerment. The initiatives described have shown that they have an enriching impact on social fabric, on the increase of autonomy in the administration of public and local spaces, and on the promotion of the common good, solidarity, and ethical values.

To conclude, the importance of respecting and strengthening community leadership and networks was highlighted. There was also emphasis on the need for providing these kinds of experiences with more visibility in the various international forums, so that the authorities might listen and learn from these kinds of experiences. Lastly, it was pointed out that the presence of the State with policies for supporting people contributes to the construction of high-quality life projects.

4
 
20/05/2015 - 14:00 to 15:30

ROOM:  Microcine

 

Innovation Session 2

Organized by: METROPOLIS and Buenos Aires City Government

 

Open innovation is a tool that is widely used by companies and businesses around the world, but in actual fact its most significant impact may derive from this approach being adopted by local authorities. Open innovation offers the potential to improve citizens’ quality of life, to achieve changes and efficiency at local authorities, while also encouraging citizens and local businesses to participate more actively. In the current changing circumstances in which we find ourselves, it is important to be one step ahead of change, providing solutions and initiatives. With regard to cities, this requires imagination, creativity, and lateral thinking. It requires innovation applied to urban challenges, or in other words, urban innovation.

The session was structured through speeches followed by round-table discussions where participants had the opportunity to debate certain issues raised by various specialists in urban management. The audience was made up of civil servants from member cities of METROPOLIS, academics, and members of NGOs on public policies.

Sunil Dubey, Professor from the University of Sydney, began the working session by introducing the subject of urban and open innovation, with references to experiences and challenges. Subsequently, Alvaro García Resta, architect in charge of the Urban Innovation Team in the City of Buenos Aires, spoke about the subject of Urban Innovation; Rudi Borrmann, Director-General of Innovation and Open Government in the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, spoke about Open Innovation; and Cecilia Lucca, Coordinator of the Innovation and Creativity Table of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, spoke about the administration of innovation within local authorities.

Following this, the participants were divided into groups in order to discuss various problems and questions relating to urban and open innovation. The conclusions and challenges reported from these debates focussed on aspects such as the importance of connecting innovative ideas through virtual communities, the generation of innovation hubs, the value of planning and the generation of projects, the increase of budgetary funds, and the tools of participatory budgets. Emphasis was also placed on the creation of contents in collaborative manner, which encourage the exchange of information and online knowledge management.

The participants likewise identified some of the challenges to urban efficiency, such as the focus on sustainability, better use of public spaces, the optimization of transport, universal access to basic services, the use of new technologies, and the creation of employment and opportunities. Furthermore, there was interest in enriching the identity and role of citizens, and active participation in local areas and communities, and a return to what is collective, with value being placed on the dissemination and socialization of initiatives through social media.

 

Schedule

1.30 p.m. – Opening and welcome

1.35 p.m. – Introduction to the theme by the expert. Problems involved

1.55 p.m. – Presentation of the methodology and debate topics

2.00 p.m. – Start of the group discussions

2.30 p.m. – Summary of the group work

2.40 p.m. – Final presentation of conclusions by each group (1 min per group, presentation of experiences, good practices, examples, innovative ideas, etc.)

3.00 p.m. – Close and conclusions by the session leader

 

4
 
20/05/2015 - 14:00 to 15:30

ROOM:  Cámara

 

2nd Thematic Session on Sustainability

Organized by: METROPOLIS and Government of the City of Buenos Aires 

 

The subject of this meeting arose as a result of the identification of a central problem for cities: the excessive prominence of the motor car, which generates other drawbacks such as traffic jams, pollution, illness, and lack of safety. In order to resolve this, designing transport to be more friendly has been proposed as a way of making cities more sustainable, human, accessible, and healthy, with the aim of reducing traffic and making people’s travel more reliable.

In contemporary urban society, mobility is an essential condition for accessing goods and services and managing different daily living activities. This is why boosting connectivity means improving urban equity and triggering a virtuous cycle with positive effects on social cohesion. Guaranteeing the maximum level of accessibility and providing it at the lowest possible social cost is a major global challenge for our cities.

In past decades, we've seen see how the design of large cities focused on awarding a leading role to automobiles over people. As these conditions hassle the circulation of pedestrians and bicycles, every citizen who needs to move around such cities on a daily basis has to face major problems, which range from large-scale traffic jams to health problems deriving from vehicle emissions and safety risks.

No commitment to a sustainable and humane city will be complete if friendlier mobility is not guaranteed, in a model which promotes healthy mobility (cycling and/or walking), to shore up the idea that pedestrians have priority, as they are the most vulnerable parties with regards transport. Friendly mobility pursues traffic calming, guaranteeing travel and accessibility to people. In this regard, it is essential that urban planning fosters the mobility of pedestrians and bicycles, recovering the public space and targeting it at walking and the construction of bike paths, as well as efficient public transport, both within cities and on an inter-urban basis. These measures must be complemented by policies to revitalize local services and businesses in neighborhoods to minimize unnecessary travel.

In a debate moderated by Daniely Votto Fontoura, Head of Strategic Relations at EMBARQ Brazil, and taking questions from the audience, the following experiences were shared:

  • Buenos Aires: 'The Sustainable Mobility Plan' by Juanjo Méndez, Head of the Committee of the Transport Subsecretariat of Buenos Aires City Government
  • Johannesburg: 'Friendly mobility in the city' by Lisa Seftel, Executive Director of the Department of Transport of the City of Johannesburg.
  • Seoul: 'The Project for the recovery of the River Chenggyecheon' by Soohjun Kim, Director of the Seoul Institute.
  • Rio de Janeiro: ‘Policies of mobility in 2016 Olympic Games' by Diego Blanc, Advisor on Institutional Relations and Bilateral Co-operation for the Rio de Janeiro City Hall.

The presentations tackled the way in which urban initiatives in transport matters have benefits for citizens’ quality of life (pedestrians, cyclists, public transport users, traders, businesses, etc.), as well as on the economic and social development of the city. The participants in this session shared the experiences of their cities, explaining how, through urban planning, they had been able to recover public spaces, build cycle lanes, administer transport efficiently, and revitalize services and businesses in local areas in order to reduce unnecessary travel. The essence of this subject is to understand that genuine transformation is possible with changes in three areas: infrastructure, operations, and behaviour. 

Some measures which were highlighted include the Rea Vaya Rapid Bus Transit, the promotion of cycling and the use of minibus taxis in Johannesburg; the transoeste, transcarioca, and transolímpica Rapid Bus Transit along with the promotion of cycling in Rio de Janeiro, and pedestrianization in Buenos Aires along with the Metrobus and Ecobici schemes. The project in Seoul involved the restoration of Cheonggyecheon, a canal buried under the Cheonggye Highway which used to result in a poor quality of life, depopulation, and the running down of the centre.

In the case of Buenos Aires, the Sustainable Transport Plan has been implemented, which works on a paradigm shift based on thinking out public spaces in terms of mobility and not just transport. As such, there is more focus on the person and not just on the motor car or the bus. Within this framework, the Buenos Aires Sustainable Transport Plan has as its aim the improvement of the quality of life of residents, working on themes such as the priority of public transport, for which the main action is the construction of the Metrobus corridors. Currently, the network is 38 km in length and has an impact on the quality of the travel experience for over 640,000 people every day. With regard to healthy mobility, the aim is to promote travel by bicycle and on foot through the construction of a network of cycle lanes and the creation of a system of public bicycles known as Ecobici, as well as improving walkability by creating friendly environments for pedestrians.

4
 
20/05/2015 - 14:00 to 15:30

Representatives from the following METROPOLIS members participated: Île-de-France, Barcelona, Johannesburg, Guangzhou, Berlin, Brussels, Montreal, Sao Paulo (state), Sao Paulo (city), Abidjan, Mexico City, Mashhad, Seoul, Santiago de Chile Metropolitan Region, Istanbul, Chengdu, Quito, Buenos Aires, Dakar, and Porto Alegre.

Also in attendance were Alain Le Saux, METROPOLIS Secretary-General; Felip Roca, candidate for Secretary-General; the Treasurer Jean-Luc Vanraes, and Marina Klemenciewicz on behalf of the International Women Network. Also in attendance were representatives from UCLG, Deloitte, and FMDV.

Out of the main decisions taken by the Board of Directors, we may highlight the following:

  • Approval of the Minutes of the 2014 Board of Directors Meeting (Hyderabad).
  • Ratification of Felip Roca as the new Secretary-General of METROPOLIS as from 1 October 2015.
  • Approval of the Activities Report (August 2014 - March 2015).
  • Approval of the cities of San Salvador and Ramallah as new members of the Association.
  • Approval of the report on the implementation of the 2014 budget.
  • Approval of the creation and of the composition of the Finance Committee as part of the Executive Committee.
  • Approval of the implementation of the amended 2015 budget, and extension of the planning for the 2016 budget to December.
  • Approval of the inclusion of METROPOLIS in the UCLG taskforce on risk management, led by the CUF (United Cities of France).
  • Approval of the process led by the Co-Presidency of Berlin, Michael Müller, and the working dynamics proposed in relation to the METROPOLIS contribution project.
  • Approval of the mandate of the mayor of Montreal, Denis Coderre, as the METROPOLIS representative for Climate Change and COP21.
  • METROPOLIS supports the organization of the 2nd World Assembly of Local Authorities, and approves the proposed METROPOLIS Declaration read out by the President at this meeting.
  • Approval of the mandate of the Mayor of Johannesburg, Mpho Parks Tau, as representative of METROPOLIS for Basic Services and Social Inclusion.
  • Mandate to the Secretary-General to find a city to host the METROPOLIS Annual Meeting in 2016.
  • Approval to organize the XII World METROPOLIS Congress in Montreal in 2017, on the grounds that it is the city where METROPOLIS was created in 1985 and it hosted the Congress in 1993.

In addition, the METROPOLIS Board of Directors officially welcomed the new Secretary-General, Felip Roca, who officially takes office as from the fourth quarter of 2015, when the current Secretary-General, Alain Le Saux, steps down. Roca will be the fifth Secretary-General, coinciding with the 30th anniversary of the Association, which faces the future with numerous challenges at an international level, the administration of over 140 member cities, as well as facing new governance within the Association, amongst others.

1
 
 
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 15:30 to 16:00
11
 
 
20/05/2015 - 16:00 to 17:30

This session was moderated by Paul James, Professor of Globalization and Cultural Diversity at the ICS and UWS in Australia, and Barbara Berninger, Regional Secretary of METROPOLIS Europe.

PrepCity was an initiative set up by the city of Berlin, and it is proposed as a working group at METROPOLIS. The workshop was the starting point for the PrepCity Working Group, and a second gathering in early 2016 will be sought.

The initiative seeks to support the efforts that UCLG has been leading with regard to the generation of debating forums in order to express the voices of local and regional authorities. The aim is to encourage the reflexion process in the implementation of the sustainable goals of the new urban agenda to be agreed during the United Nations Habitat III Conference.

During the meeting, all interested metropolises were encouraged to participate in the discussion process on the future of cities. It was emphasized that cities have a great deal of experience and that local authorities can play a crucial role as interlocutors and negotiators in the establishment of the global agenda on Sustainable Urban Development. There were also discussions on the scope of Habitat III, as well as on the PrepCity concept.

The speakers included Josep Roig, Secretary-General of UCLG, the Governing Mayor of Berlin Michael Müller, the Mayor of Johannesburg, Mpho Parks Tau, and the Deputy Mayor of the Quito Metropolitan District, Daniela Chacón. Marina Klemensiewicz and Estel Crusellas represented Buenos Aires and Barcelona respectively, with the intention of demonstrating the work of the METROPOLIS Women in the process of drafting and agreeing a declaration for the world conference. Likewise, Hossein Kashiri participated on behalf of METROPOLIS Youth.

1
 
20/05/2015 - 16:00 to 17:30

The Global Fund for Cities Development (FMDV) is a network that facilitates direct and autonomous access to funding for local authorities. It was set up in October 2010 as an initiative by METROPOLIS, by United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), and by 34 founding members (cities and networks of cities). The FMDV is a network of political solidarity for the strengthening of the financial capacities of local authorities, by local authorities.

The FMDV was created out of the need for local authorities to have operational and functional assistance in the search for sustainable and viable financial solutions for the projects promoted by local authorities.

The FMDV provides technical assistance and financial engineering throughout the entire process of drawing up Urban Development projects (definition, search for finance, and organization). It facilitates access by local authorities to the financial resources that are best suited to their needs, and under the best conditions: guaranties, loans, subsidies, donations, capital markets, endogenous instruments. This dual component of technical support for Urban Development and financial engineering in order to facilitate access to sustainable funding, allows governments, elected authorities, and their technical teams to design, implement, and assess their own development projects, in accordance with the characteristics and the potential of their territory, and in consultation with other interested local parties..

The meeting brought together the members of FMDV, and served to present the organization’s activities discuss its strategy. The representatives of the METROPOLIS member cities forming part of the General Assembly were able to participate in this meeting (albeit without the right to vote).

1
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
20/05/2015 - 20:00 to 22:00

The dinner was held at the ‘Piazzolla Tango’ theatre. The event began with an opening reception for the participants. Subsequently, the guests took their seats to enjoyed the dinner, which was interspersed with tango performances. When the dessert course arrived, a cake was cut to commemorate METROPOLIS’ 30thanniversary. Jean Paul Huchon, Josep Roig, Alain Le Saux, and Marina Klemensiewicz all said a few words, and gifts were handed out to some of the protagonists of the association’s thirty-year history.

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Thursday 21 May

All day
 
 
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21/05/2015 - 10:00 to 12:00

Organized by: GCBA and METROPOLIS

 

Meeting point at 10:00: NH City & Tower

The central district (Microcentro porteño) is one of the areas with the highest flow of pedestrians and vehicles in the city, and constitutes one of the main commercial and employment hubs. With projects such as Metrobus, the Microcentro Plan, and the Sustainable Transport Plan, a profound transformation was achieved in how public spaces are used in this area, with an improvement in the quality of life of the people who work in the area, an increase in road safety, and a reduction in environmental pollution.

The following activities were performed within the framework of this second experience:

  • Microcentro Plan: tour through the main interventions.
  • Sustainable Mobility Plan: tour of the 9 de Julio Metrobus(BRT), Combis Terminal, Ecobici System, cycle lanes and pedestrianization, amongst others.

 

Microcentro Plan

This plan, which has revitalized the centre of the City of Buenos Aires, began in November 2012 and was completed in August 2015. The project covers an area of 1.4 sq. km. The aim was to discover its main interventions: the introduction of LED street lamps, installation of benches, completion of tree-planting, organization of rubbish containers, transport islands, motorcycle parking, tourist bus, pedestrianization and safer pedestrian crossings, underground containers, amongst others. The project was carried out with respect for the original architecture. Furthermore, there was an effort to introduce a more efficient system of waste management, a reduction in pollution, traffic management, the residential development of the area, increased control and effective security around the perimeter, and the generation of a new cultural, tourism, and gastronomical centre that is of interest to all people travelling through or visiting the area.

The participants began their walkabout in the Plaza de Mayo area, where they observed the refurbishment of the façade of the Primada Cathedral of Buenos Aires. Later they continued down Calle San Martín where they viewed the work being carried out to conserve and improve the cultural value of the buildings. Subsequently they visited the pedestrianized Florida, the recovery of which includes the tasks of organizing public spaces, reducing visual eyesores, and installing new street furniture and flagstones. Later they went up to the terrace of the emblematic Bencich Building, where they viewed the work being carried out to restore and recover its architectural beauty.

 

Sustainable Mobility Plan

In order to build a city that is inclusive, healthy, and modern, it is necessary to give priority to public transport, to the promotion of sustainable transport, to the regulations and road safety, and to the introduction of technologies that allow information be provided in real time.

Riding the Metrobus 9 de Julio (BRT system): the priority of this item was to use the Metrobus, which is the name given to the rapid transit system in Buenos Aires. The city achieved results such as reduced journey times, improved frequencies, higher-quality waiting, reduced pollution, and innovation, all of which taking into account the reality of the situation and the context in which each corridor was circumscribed. Nowadays, the Metrobus network is 38 km in length and transports 640,000 people every day. Its construction in the Avenida 9 de Julio, the most emblematic Avenue in Argentina, is a message to all: public spaces must be conceived and designed for people. First of all, the participants were taken to the stop located at Av. 9 de Julio and Av. Santa Fe, where they began their journey on the Metrobus. They alighted at the Obelisco Sur stop. Later, they visited the Combis Obelisco Terminal, the implementation of which had the aim of constructing an exclusive terminal for the organization and circulation of the minibuses operating in the area. Later they went to the Perón Bicycle Station, which forms part of the Ecobici project, a system of city bicycles. Lastly, the group went on a short walk through the Microcentro, along the Diagonal Norte, Florida, and Lavalle thoroughfares in order to then proceed to the Colón Theatre.

Riding the Ecobicis (bike sharing system): The promotion of bicycle use is a strategic policy for the City of Buenos Aires. Nowadays, they are used by an ever-increasing number of citizens and their benefits are clearly visible. The Ecobici (public city bicycles) are also a fundamental part of sustainable transport which looks to the future. The tour centred on the construction of the network of safe cycle lanes, the Ecobici project, the policies for the promotion of bicycle use, and road-safety education. The tour began at the Monumento a los Españoles, located in Av. Libertador y Sarmiento. There the participants took their bicycles from the docking station to begin the journey which included the cycle lanes in the Libertador, Coronel Díaz, French, Juncal, and Arenales thoroughfares. There was a pause for the purpose of inspecting the infrastructure of the cycle lanes, and later another pause to explain the automation of the Ecobici. The bicycles were left at the Plaza San Martín in order to walk through the main avenues and pedestrianized streets of the Microcentro in order to reach the Colón Theatre.

 

 

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21/05/2015 - 12:30 to 14:00

The Closing Ceremony was at the Colón Theatre. Before the luncheon began, the guests went on a tour of the theatre premises, during which specialist guides explained the history of the theatre and showed off the restoration works and value of the theatre.Following the closing cocktail, Alain Le Saux, Marina Klemensiewicz, and Tomás Kroyer said some words to conclude the METROPOLIS Annual Meeting, mainly to thank all the participants and associates.

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21/05/2015 - 15:00 to 17:00

This workshop was carried out at the new building of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, located in the Parque Patricios quarter, to take an in-depth look at the case of the Buenos Aires Innovation Board, within the framework of a round of studies that the City of Guangzhou is carrying out amongst the finalist cities for its Urban Innovation award.

Buenos Aires was selected from amongst numerous cities by the Technical Committee of the Guangzhou International Award as it is a leading city in matters of Urban Innovation. In this manner it joined a list of 15 cities which have been finalists for the Canton International Award for Urban Innovation in 2014. The initiative selected was the ‘Innovation and Creativity Board’ which explores new forms of inter-departmental collaboration.

The Workshop was entitled ‘Inter-departmental Collaboration and Urban Governance’ and it involved the participants examining and discussing the case in greater depth. The experience served to learn about the ways in which to strengthen administration in innovation in global cities.

The opening words of welcome were spoken by the Buenos Aites Minister of Modernization, Andrés Ibarra. The workshop began formally with some words by the representative of the city of Guangzhou, Yang Jiancheng, Vice Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC). Subsequently there were interventions by Tomás Kroyer, Director General of International Relations and Co-operation of the City of Buenos Aires; Alain Le Saux, Secretary-General of METROPOLIS, and Josep Roig, Secretary-General of UCLG. The workshop concluded with some comments by He Yanling, professor of the School of Governance of the University of Sun Yat-Sen and a representative of the Guangzhou International Award.

The workshop culminated with a walkabout in the area surrounding the building, so that the participants could observe some examples of urban innovation carried out and promoted by the Innovation Board.

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