United Nations (UN)’s World Cities Day (WCD) is annually observed across the world on October 31 to promote the international community’s interest in global urbanization and push for global cooperation in sustainable urban development.
The theme of World Cities Day 2022 is “Better City, Better Life: Act Local to Go Global”.
- The theme underlines the importance of the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030, especially the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
- Better City, Better Life is the general theme of World Cities Day which remains constant every year.
- Every year a different sub-theme and a location for global observance is chosen to promote the success of urbanization or address a challenge resulting from urbanization.
Global observance of WCD 2022:
The global observance of World Cities Day 2022 is organised in Shanghai, the People’s Republic of China under the theme (Sub Theme or theme of WCD 2022) “Act Local to Go Global”, focusing on the need to promote local action to accelerate the achievement of 17 SDGs.
i. The UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a resolution A/RES/68/239 on 27th December 2013 and proclaimed October 31 of every year as World Cities Day.
ii. The 1st World Cities Day was observed on 31st October 2014, in Shanghai, the People’s Republic of China.
Note: Every year, World Cities Day (31st October) marks the end of the observance of Urban October.
The month-long observance of Urban October begins with World Habitat Day on the 1st Monday of October and ends with World Cities Day on 31 October.
- Urban October was launched by United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) in 2014 to raise awareness, promote participation, generate knowledge and engage the international community in creating a better urban future.
- The events of Urban October are organised by the UN-Habitat and its partners.
Events of WCD 2022 in Shanghai:
The host city (Shanghai) had arranged for a high-level opening ceremony for the global observance of World Cities Day 2022. It had 2 virtual Roundtables in parallel:
- Roundtable 1 discussion: Guiding Local Action to Go Global
- Roundtable 2 discussion: From Local to Global: Multilevel Governance for Impact.
UN-Habitat Scroll of Honour Award:
i. In 1989, the UN-Habitat Scroll of Honour award was launched as one of the most prestigious human settlements awards in the world.
ii. It aims to acknowledge initiatives which have made outstanding contributions in the field of human settlements with an emphasis on Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities.
The winners of 2022 UN-Habitat Scroll of Honour Award were announced in September 2022.
About United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) :
Executive Director- Maimunah Mohd Sharif
Headquarters- Nairobi, Kenya