During the latest World Summit of Local Regional Leaders (5th UCLG World Congress) which took place in Bogotá, the Urban Innovation Workshop organized by the People's Government of Guangzhou Municipality was the opportunity for the public to get to know the 15 finalists of the 3rd Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation. Among the short-listed initiatives there are projects from five Metropolis members: Addis Ababa, Brussels Capital Region, Jakarta, La Paz and Ramallah.
The event was opened by the Vice-president of the Chinese People Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC), Mr Song Jingwu, the President of Metropolis and Mayor of Montreal, Mr Denis Coderre, and the Co-president of Metropolis and Mayor of Guangzhou, Mr Wen Guohi. All three congratulated the organizations responsible for the third edition of the award, and emphasized its main objectives, which are to promote innovative initiatives undertaken in different cities and to improve the well-being of their citizens.
The workshop’s more than 120 attendees had the opportunity to know briefly the main features of the 15 cities selected by the technical committee of the award. This presentation was followed by a debate on urban innovation, the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the new Urban Agenda. The debate was moderated by Nicholas You, adviser to the Guangzhou Award, and counted on the active participation of Peter Woods, ambassador of UCLG ASPAC, Sunil Dubey, advisor of Metropolis, Monika Zimmermann, Director of the Technical Committee of the Guangzhou Award, Arab Hoballah, Chief of Sustainable Lifestyles, Cities and Industry at UNEP, and Neal Pierce, Citiscope editor-in-chief of the Citiscope. Different strategies for the promotion and replicability of innovation projects between cities were discussed, and the Metropolis Policy Transfer Platform was cited as a tool that effectivelly connects international experts and shares concrete examples of good practices from cities around the world.
The session was concluded with an invitation from Nicholas Yu to join the award ceremony, which will be part of the program of the Guangzhou International Urban Innovation Conference & Festival, taking place in Guangzhou from 5 to 8 December 2016.