Four Korean cities – Seoul, Suwon, Busan, and Gwangju – are paired with four European cities – Eindhoven (Netherlands), the Scottish Cities Alliance (UK), Tampere (Finland) and Barcelona (Spain) – to promote better urban policy and improve the quality of life in participating cities. This is part of the World Cities Project supported by the European Parliament to promote long-term cooperations between the select cities.
The World Cities Project is the result of a political initiative in 2014 of the European Parliament and is implemented by the European Commission drawing on external expertise. World Cities current stage (2017-2018) promotes cooperation between cities from the European Union and cities from the Republic of Korea, Australia, South Africa, Indonesia and Vietnam. The project in the Republic of Korea is implemented by CityNet and Ramboll.
The cooperation agenda with the Republic of Korea will identify pilot regions and cities and the development of concrete actions for implementation. The focus area covers urban innovation (the smart city) and green technologies (energy efficiency, low carbon development), among others.
The project initiative was launched at a meeting held in Seoul on 14 March in the presence of Mr Kim Chang-beom, Ambassador for International Relations, Seoul Metropolitan Government, 20 European city delegates and senior officials of the Korean Government and local authorities. The EU was represented by Michael Reiterer, the EU Ambassador-designate to the Republic of Korea and Dr Ronald Hall, Principal Advisor, EU Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy, Brussels, in addition to other senior officials and EU experts.
The project launch meeting aimed at further strengthening the ties between EU and the Republic of Korea as well as helping to develop the EU-Korea cooperation on sustainable urban development. Approximately 30-40 representatives from the EU and Korean cities attended the meeting to discuss particularly on the way forward regarding Smart City (transportation, ICT, safety), Urban Economy (innovation, clusters, start-ups), Climate Change (low-carbon, green energy, resilience) and urban regeneration (cultural heritage, green spaces, affordable housing).
The meeting was then followed by three-day working meetings and site visits in the Korea’s hosting cities, during which participating cities from both sides exchanged information and discuss relevant urban development issues. This will be followed by six months of decentralised cooperation on specific topics between these cities.
CityNet is encouraging all its members to submit nominations to be considered as candidates for the CityNet Executive Committee for the term 2018-2021. The Executive Committee is CityNet’s highest policy decision-making body.
The Executive Committee is composed of President, two (2) Vice Presidents, and nine (9) members. CityNet members will elect the new members during the Eighth General Council in the CityNet Congress in Colombo, Sri Lanka from November 5-8, 2017. The Council will also elect its Auditor.
Details of the nomination, eligibility criteria and application forms are attached below.
Deadline for the submission of nominations must reach the Election Committee through CityNet Secretariat by April 28, 2017.
For urgent queries, please email CityNet Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Director of Sidoarjo Public Hospital, Mr. Atok Irawan and the Director of Boramae Medical Center, Mr. Park Min-hyun first met in September this year during a program on healthcare and hospital management facilitated by CityNet that also brought knowledge exchange in e-governance and water treatment between Sidoarjo Regency and Seoul Metropolitan Government. On their opening remarks, they stated that both hospitals agreed to continue their partnership in a more concrete step that include fellowship programs where Boramae Medical Center welcomes medical doctors from Sidoarjo Public Hospital to attend a short course in Seoul.
The Regent of Sidoarjo H. Saiful Ilah expressed his excitement over this partnership and highlighted how CityNet has played a key role in connecting the two public hospitals. The delegation of Boramae Medical Center that consisted of five people had a chance to visit the Sidoarjo Public Hospital, during which Director Park Min-hyun was particularly impressed by how Sidoarjo Public Hospital is run with full dedication from all components.
The last program of the day was a lecture on plastic surgery delivered by plastic surgeon Mr. Park Ji-ung from Boramae Medical Center to the plastic surgery residents of Sidoarjo and Surabaya Public Hospitals. It was then followed by a presentation from the only plastic surgeon at the Sidoarjo Public Hospital, Ms. Ariek Desnantika who showed several procedures she has continuously conducted.
Representatives from the three institutions emphasized the need to connect the current knowledge platforms which complement each other to implement the SDGs while promoting sustainable development for all. This is one of the key elements of the Urban SDG Knowledge Platform, as it is expected to become not only a gateway to the SDG-related city policies, but also to other knowledge platforms available to help local governments develop sustainably. The Urban SDG Knowledge Platform is also expected to be a tool to improve the offline activities of CityNet, ESCAP and other organizations willing to use its information. CityNet will use this platform to find cities that would like to share their policies through workshops or sessions and to facilitate its city-to-city cooperation program, CityNet Services.
The Urban SDG Knowledge Platform will improve CityNet´s current work and open new opportunities to help its members in achieving their sustainable development goals. Join us now by using the information on the platform already or uploading your city policies at http://www.urbansdgplatform.org/
For more details about the “Workshop on the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asian and Pacific Cities” including the program, participants list, presentations, and supporting documents please go to http://www.unescap.org/events/workshop-implementation-2030-agenda-sustainable-development-asian-and-pacific-cities
CityNet members and partners convened in Makati, Philippines for the 34th Session of the Executive Committee (ExCom) from November 23-24 which concluded with a road map for the network.
Executive Committee Meeting is the network’s highest governing body that meets annually to evaluate its activities throughout the year and map out the organization vision and strategy for the following year. A series of activities implemented throughout 2016 were reported to the Executive Committee that included members’ pioneering initiatives as well as CityNet’s active participation in the recently held United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development adopting the New Urban Agenda in Quito Ecuador.
As conveyed by CityNet Secretary General Vijay julietta in canada Jagannathan, this year’s meeting underscored the importance of revisiting our key organizational strategies as we usher in the implementation of the New Urban Agenda. This year’s Meeting kicked-off with a Strategic Planning Meeting a day prior to the ExCom proper that showed CityNet’s commitment to the above-mentioned challenges. This strategy meeting aimed at setting a road map for the network with clear plans to be implemented in the next few years.
Some of the key points adopted at the Strategic Planning Meeting to shape up CityNet’ core activities are:
- Disaster Risk Management
- Urban Climate Change Resilience
- Knowledge Platform Modalities in a Digital World
- Paradigm Shift in Urban Challenges in Asian Cities
- Affordable Housing
- Mobility Solutions
- Good Governance and Decentralization
In addition to the institutional and activity discussion, this year’s ExCom served as a preparatory deliberation for CityNet Congress that will be hosted by Colombo Municipal Council in November 2017 where the main office bearers for the year 2018-2021 will be elected.
It is all systems go for the CityNet’s 34th Executive Committee Meeting on 24, 2016. This was assured by no less than Makati City Mayor Abby Binay-Campos to the CityNet’s Secretariat’s courtesy visit to her office last September 27, 2016. Makati City is CityNet’s Second Vice President City.
CityNet Secretariat’s Operations Director Taegyun Gi, Program Officer Jaime Paulo Mora, and Project Coordinator Hee Soo Joo met their local counterparts to finalize the details of the preparation for the 34th Executive Committee.
The representatives of CityNet Secretariat and local working groups visited the hotel’s meeting venue and rooms, finalized the placement of banners and help desks, simulated the visitors’ flow, and set deadlines for sending program details and itinerary.
The Executive Committee is the highest governing body of CityNet that meets once a year to evaluate its activities throughout the year and map out the organization vision and strategy for the following year. Prior to this year’s meeting, CityNet will also conduct its strategic planning meeting on November 23, 2016.
City officials from seven Chinese cities participated in the Arisu Waterworks Workshop from September 25 to October 1, jointly organized by the Office of Waterworks Seoul Metropolitan Government (Arisu) and CityNet. Tailored specifically for Chinese cities, the workshop transmitted the know-how and lessons learned from the waterworks policy implemented by Arisu, which is often regarded to have one of the best waterworks practices in the Asia Pacific.
Taking the participants’ interests and their cities’ priorities into consideration, the workshop was organized into seminars on waterworks policies and a site visit to maximize the effectiveness of the workshop, such as the Arisu Water Treatment Centre, Sewage Treatment Centre and the Seoul Water Research Institutes.
Participants were especially interested in the management of the waterworks network, particularly regarding the issues of leakage prevention due to aging pipe networks. Participants also showed their great interest in the Arisu’s policy and the management of wastewater treatment.
The workshop sessions were focused on transmitting know-hows and lessons learned in relation to the aforementioned areas of interest.
CityNet organized a learning event on sustainable transport, titled ‘Learning Sustainable Transport Options: A Localised Workshop Activity for Philippine CityNet Members’ on September 29, 2016 in Makati City, Philippines.
CityNet co-organized the activity with the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP), the mandated association of Philippine cities, which is also a CityNet associate member. A total of 29 participants from five Philippine CityNet members – Makati, Muntinlupa, Quezon City, Iloilo, and Baguio –which were comprised of local city and transport planners attended the one-day learning event. LCP also extended its invite to other non-CityNet members like Taguig, General Santos, and Balanga cities. Participants learned different success models of improving urban mobility.
Seoul City Foreign Advisor to Philippine’s Department of Transportation (DOTr) Seungho Jo presented how Seoul city overcame its challenges in improving traffic and transport. He emphasized Seoul City’s key guiding policy, ‘Putting People First’, as a success factor in overcoming urban mobility challenges. Since then, the city has improved its bus and subway routes, and developed bikeways and walkways contributing to the city’s liveability.
Meanwhile, DOTr recognized the need to strengthen national-local collaboration in ensuring efforts in improving mobility are synchronized. For a local case, Quezon City presented its comprehensive program of its traffic enforcers. Aside from managing day-to-day traffic and clearing operations, the city’s traffic enforcers also teach children on the basics of road safety and provide trainings to their counterparts in other cities as well.
The workshop capped off with the participants listing down the urban mobility-related issues and challenges that need further program intervention. Seeing the list, CityNet Program Officer Jaime Paulo Mora presented the CityNet Services program as a follow up activity for cities to avail.
CityNet Services is one of CityNet’s regular programs where members can apply for support in terms of technical advisory, study visits, or city-to-city partnerships.
During the closing remarks, LCP Secretary-General and Balanga City Mayor Francis Garcia said that LCP leadership looks forward to participating more in CityNet-initiated activities both in the Philippines and in the Asia-Pacific region. He said that best practices and programs of CityNet members provide other cities relevant information towards developing sustainable urban solutions.
To show their commitment to improve services towards healthier and smart city with citizens’ positive attitude, National Chapter Indonesia members held a localised seminar on healthy cities that was hosted by Banjarbaru City on 12-13 October under the theme “Committed to Collaborate for Improving Services towards Healthier and Smart City with Character”.
This was a follow up of 2015 Short Course and Study Visit on Healthy Cities and Hospital Management to Europe in the end of 2015 which was well participated CityNet-Indonesia member’s head of health policy and several local hospital directors. The short course and study visit was conducted in Europe on 16-26 October 2015 in cooperation with Erasmus University Rotterdam.
In 2014, the then President of Indonesia, Soesilo Bambang Yudhoyono, launched the Health Care Insurance for all citizen administrated by special institution called Badan Pengelola Jaminan Social (BPJS). Central Government of Indonesia targets that by 2019 the entire population of Indonesia is already covered by health insurance. This was among the discussed topic in the seminar that was attended by approximately 100 health practitioners from all CityNet member cities in Indonesia. The speakers included the Ministry of Home Affairs of Indonesia and the Association of Indonesian Hospitals.
The discussion will help Indonesian cities to support achieving SDG’s goal in order to decrease poverty and increase the health and prosperity level.
This seminar was opened by the Mayor of Banjarbaru City H. Nadjmi Adhani with a hope that this seminar would bring tangible results for healthier cities along with great characteristic of the people. Supporting this program, the President of National Chapter Indonesia, the Mayor of Balikpapan Rizal Effendi shared with the audience the importance and benefit of becoming a CityNet member particularly to create a sustainable city. Through this regional network members could share and learn best practices from each other.
In conjunction with this seminar, Mayor Adhani inaugurated the new local hospital “Idaman” in the city which is expected to increase the city’s health index. Healthy cities do not just mean to have a great local hospital, but also to ensure that the city is liveable for all the citizens. Prior to the seminar, all participants were invited to plant trees at the newly developed Banua Botanical Gardens.
From August 2nd – 4th, 2016, the workshop on “Public Spaces: Creating Safer, Inclusive, and Accessible Public Spaces for All” was held in Kuala Lumpur, co-organized by CityNet, UN-Habitat, and Kuala Lumpur Regional Training Center (KLRTC). This was the first regional workshop from UN-Habitat’s Program on Public Space, which marks the beginning of a reinforced effort to promote public spaces in Asian cities.
The workshop was led by Cecilia Andersson and Sohel Rana from UN-Habitat, and Sayel Cortes from CityNet. They were supported by three guest speakers who brought different perspectives: Prof. Mike Douglass from the National University of Singapore, Filippo Boselli from the World Future Council, and Mahbuba Sultana from Prothom Alo Bondhusbava Awareness Development Secretary. Eighteen participants from seven countries actively contributed to the discussion and presented innovative ideas to improve the design of several public spaces they visited in Kuala Lumpur.
City-wide multidimensional planning for public space policy brings together different areas of the local government connecting not only internal functions within the city government, but also creating spaces that link multiple issues of the city. From this perspective, public spaces are enablers for safer cities, local economic development, health improvements, and better quality of life.
CityNet recognizes the opportunity and the need to promote strategic interventions to detonate wider positive impacts in Asian cities, and this successful workshop on public space is expected to be the initial step towards that direction.
In the coming months CityNet will help to connect the grant opportunities offered by UN-Habitat’s Programme on Public Space with member cities which are potentially eligible for funding to further promote better quality public spaces.