Bonn Symposium 2017

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Local partnerships. Working together to implement Agenda 2030 worldwide

Deutsche Welle, Bonn
5-6 December 2017

This year’s Bonn Symposium will focus on the role of local partnerships in SDG implementation. What are good examples of partnerships within and between municipalities worldwide? What can be done to build on existing partnerships? Which factors determine the success of local partnerships for sustainable development, and what are the specific challenges? What can be done to facilitate better knowledge sharing among municipalities worldwide – and how can networks of cities make a contribution here? These are the key questions to be explored at the two-day Symposium.

A radical shift towards more sustainability can only succeed if society commits all its energies to the pursuit of this objective. Indeed, a partnership-based approach to SDG implementation is enshrined in SDG 17 as a self-standing goal. At the international level, knowledge and technology transfer – between all regions of the world – is the main focus of attention here.

But at the local level too, cities and municipalities, civil society groups, the academic community and business must work together with citizens in the interests of sustainable development. In practice, numerous local partnerships for sustainable development have existed within and among cities, municipalities and regions for a very long time, involving a range of stakeholders and covering various policy fields. Very few of these alliances identify specifically as partnerships within the SDG framework. In most cases, the primary motive for establishing the partnership is pragmatic: to cut urban traffic congestion, save energy or reduce waste. Nevertheless, these innovative models involving a range of stakeholders working together offer great potential for local engagement in SDG implementation.

In terms of the one world concept, international partnerships between cities are a very valuable resource for shared creative thinking about ways of implementing the SDGs at the local level. Increasing numbers of municipalities are also actively engaged in regional or international networks of cities and are thus helping to shape policy at these levels.

At the Bonn Symposium, experts from various regions of the world will discuss how Agenda 2030 can be implemented through local partnerships. We hope you will join us.

Please find the draft programme here.


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City governments as agents of local communities



In an interview with sef: on the occasion of the International sef:  Expert Workshop 2018, Professor Anél du Plessis speaks about the changing role of city governments in global governance. How are cities affected by international law? And what is their role as agents of local communities? And how is their potential restricted by national constitutions?

Read the sef: insight!

:further info here

sef: Bonn Symposium 2018

Rethinking local sustainable development


The “transformation of our world” onto a sustainable path – as agreed upon by the UN member states in the Agenda 2030 – requires more than one-off projects. How can a  fundamental change in policies, in the society and the economy be initiated? What can municipalities contribute to this shift towards sustainable development and how can the local impetus be escalated to the other political levels? The Bonn Symposium 2018 aims to stimulate ideas and inject fresh momentum into the debate about these issues.

:further info here

The Global Refugee Crisis: Towards a just response


With their effort to keep refugees and migrants out of their territories, Western nations abdicate their historical and political responsibility, according to the analysis of the renowned Indian migration researcher B.S. Chimni in GLOBAL TRENDS. ANALYSIS 03|2018. Chimni therefore calls for a just response from the international community to the global refugee crisis. Such a response could only consist of a multidimensional strategy that had to be worked out in a genuine dialogue between all stakeholders.

:further info here