DK’s 2nd City Becomes World Bank Sustainable Partner

Stockholm (NordSIP) – The Danish city of Aarhus has become a knowledge partner of the Global Platform for Sustainable Cities (GPSC) by signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the World Bank, it has emerged from the 9th Session of the World Urban Forum currently being held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The GPSC is a collaboration initiated by the World Bank and financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). It provides a platform for cities to exchange ideas, deploy analytical tools and steer investment towards long-term sustainability and provides expertise on low-carbon strategy and sustainable financing, among other categories. The platform was launched in March 2016 and is at present comprised of 28 cities from 11 countries.

“Aarhus is very excited to become a GPSC knowledge partner and the opportunity this presents to collaborate with cities on a world-wide scale,” said Aarhus mayor Jacob Bundsgaard. “We definitely have worthwhile experiences to share with our peers, and likewise hope to learn from others. Through this knowledge exchange, Aarhus can reflect upon our own policies and practices and work toward improving the city’s urban sustainability.”

Aarhus will collaborate with the GPSC in the following areas:

  • Sustainable, integrated planning strategies;
  • Low carbon development towards the objective of carbon neutrality;
  • Adaptation and resilience;
  • Water management

The World Urban Forum was also the occasion for the launch of the Urban Sustainability Framework (USF), the result of research compiled by the GPSC. The USF, a collaboration between cities, organisations and experts, guides cities in the conceptualisation of ideas and the identification of financial resources to implement them across six dimensions of urban sustainability: governance and integrated planning, fiscal sustainability, economic competitiveness, environment and resource efficiency, low carbon and resilience, and social inclusiveness.

The document outlines a four-stage approach: Defining a vision; identifying priorities; determining financing and monitoring and evaluating project implementation progress, alongside a “Measuring Framework” providing a selection of indicators to help cities track their progress by comparison to other cities, in turn promoting an integrated overall approach to implementing sustainability.

“We are confident that through this collaboration, a shared vision and common approach to urban sustainable development can be forged,” said Naoko Ishoo, GEF Chairman and CEO. “We invite cities to use the framework to meet challenges they face today and in the coming decades, and we enthusiastically look forward to the collaborative efforts to adapt an integrated approach to urban sustainability.”

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