This World Cities Day is the seventh global celebration since the day was launched in 2014 in Shanghai, China. It was designed by UN General Assembly by resolution 68/239. The main goal of the creating World Cities Day was and still is to promote global interest in urbanization and engender international cooperation to address the challenges of urbanization, thereby contributing to sustainable urban development.
The United Nations system, in particular UN-Habitat, relevant international organizations, civil society and all relevant stakeholders observe and raise awareness of the Day. The general theme of World Cities Day is Better City, Better Life, while each year a different sub-theme is selected, to either promote successes of urbanization, or address specific challenges resulting from urbanization. The theme of World Cities Day 2020 is Valuing our Communities and Cities.
World Cities Day is expected to greatly promote the international community’s interest in contributing to sustainable urban development around the world.
The impact of COVID-19 has re-shaped urban life around the world. The recognition of communities’ value must be maintained beyond the virus outbreak. In the transition to a new sustainable urban normality, local communities must play an expanded role supporting government stimulus packages for employment creation, delivery of essential services, ensuring a green-economic transformation, the provision of adequate shelter and public space and reestablishment of local value chains.
This year in order to improve the awareness of that , the UNESCO Cities Platform is organising an online ‘Urban Dialogue’ bringing together speakers from academia, the public and private sectors, and civil society to discuss and consolidate the integral components of community participation as well as how UNESCO’s work with cities could further support sustainable urban development through community centered approaches..