The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the United Nations’ agency for sustainable urban development. Through its World Urban Campaign and technical support, it promotes efficient and realistic planning at national, regional, and local levels as the most effective way to develop our cities to meet increasing demand for urban shelter and services.
UN-Habitat organizes its work around the following areas: urban planning and design, urban legislation, land and governance, urban economy, urban basic services, housing and slum upgrading, risk reduction and rehabilitation, and research and capacity development.
The Urban-LEDS II project is coordinated globally by the Climate Change Planning Unit of UN-Habitat, based in Nairobi, Kenya. UN-Habitat supports the implementing partners in Asia, Africa, and South America via Regional Offices for Asia Pacific, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean, with further support from the Country Offices of Rwanda and Colombia.
ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability
ICLEI is the leading global network of 1,500+ cities, towns, and regions committed to building a sustainable future. Through collective efforts, ICLEI impacts more than 25% of the global urban population.
At the ICLEI World Congress 2018 in Montréal, local and regional leaders across the ICLEI network released the ICLEI Montréal Commitment and Strategic Vision. This vision orients their path towards urban transformation and sets a course for delivering on the global sustainable development agenda. The ICLEI Montréal Commitment defines low emission, nature-based, circular, resilient, and equitable development as five interconnected pathways towards sustainability. ICLEI supports these pathways through policy approaches related to governance, innovation, and finance. By committing to this vision, local and regional governments are leading the way towards a fossil fuel free era; stimulating the green economy through sustainable public procurement; and creating urban low-emission, climate-resilient, and mobility-friendly development strategies.
The ICLEI World Secretariat is based in Bonn, Germany, and engages in international discussions, climate negotiations, and global platforms in order to promote the local government perspective and optimize local-national-international synergies and cooperation. The ICLEI World Secretariat holds a diverse portfolio of sustainable development projects, partnerships, and initiatives, and promotes integrated action at an urban scale as a means to achieve local, regional, national, and global sustainable development goals.
The World Secretariat also holds a strong climate and low-emission development portfolio, involving on-the-ground capacity building, technical support, and global advocacy. Acting as a focal point for the Local Governments and Municipal Authorities (LGMA) constituency at the UNFCCC, the World Secretariat is able to coordinate local government observers at the intergovernmental climate negotiations and ensure effective communication with the UNFCCC Secretariat. ICLEI World Secretariat is also part of the Founders Council of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM).
Established in 2009 as an initiative of ICLEI and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the World Secretariat manages the Bonn Center for Local Climate Action and Reporting – carbonn®, which promotes visibility of local climate action and runs a global reporting platform for cities known as the carbonn® Climate Registry (cCR). This online database serves as an advocacy tool, providing good quality data on community targets, performance, and achievements reported by local governments.
From a relevant thematic perspective, the World Secretariat takes part in the United Nations Marrakech Task Force on Sustainable Public Procurement and coordinates with the other 22 Regional offices in various global projects on several themes, such as ecomobility, city-business collaboration, stakeholder engagement, and building sectors.
ICLEI World Secretariat also leads on cross-sectoral initiatives related to climate change resilience, capacity building, MRV (Measuring, Reporting, and Verifying) systems, and access to finance. In this regards, the World Secretariat is managing the Transformative Action Program (TAP), a project pipeline and a project preparation facility that acts as an incubator to support local and regional governments by catalyzing capital flows for low-to-no emission and climate-resilient development.
The ICLEI Africa Secretariat is the African regional office for ICLEI and based in Cape Town, South Africa. ICLEI Africa collaborates closely with the global ICLEI network and other regional offices around the world to share tools, materials, strategies, and good practices specifically designed and implemented at the local level.
In addition to the work done in Africa, the Africa Secretariat is home to the ICLEI Cities Biodiversity Center, which has ICLEI’s mandate to engage globally with local governments on biodiversity-related matters.
The ICLEI European Secretariat is the regional ICLEI office for the wider European geographical region, including some countries from Asia and Africa. The European Secretariat is based in Freiburg, Germany; and has implementation offices in Brussels, Belgium; and Berlin, Germany. It offers practical tools and guidance to local governments (addressing both local leaders and municipal staff), as well as training programs. Since 2006, the European Secretariat has been supporting the work of the European Commission regarding green public procurement (GPP).
The European Secretariat is a Global Covenant of Mayors (GCoM) supporter, linking the GCoM to global developments and relevant protocols. The staff are experienced in working in multi-disciplinary environments with local governments, combining engineering with planning and policy experts. Working mostly with European projects and initiatives tackling different aspects relevant to climate change mitigation, the European Secretariat focuses on addressing policy, people, technology, and financing, using an integrated approach with sustainability as a foundation.
The ICLEI South America Secretariat, based in São Paulo, Brazil, connects its more than 70 associated governments in 8 countries to ICLEI’s global network. Established since 1994, the South American Secretariat has focused on urban sustainability agendas such as climate and low-emission development, resilience, urban biodiversity, solid waste management, sustainable public procurement, and advocacy, among many others. In order to better serve regional members, in 2018 the ICLEI South America Secretariat opened two new coordination offices in the region: one based in the Metropolitan Area of Aburrá Valley, Colombia, and another based in Santa Fé, Argentina.
The South Asia Secretariat is based in New Delhi, India and also operates through other offices in the region. ICLEI South Asia Secretariat works closely with local, provincial, and national governments, and international partners along with other ICLEI offices, to further local climate and sustainability initiatives in the South Asia region and beyond. To this end, the South Asia office has successfully supported and continues to support various cities through programs and projects, technical inputs, customized tools and methodologies, information services, trainings, and conferences and workshops.
ICLEI South Asia Secretariat offers a wide range of technical services to assist cities in planning and implementation of actions related to integrated resource planning, energy auditing and efficiency, renewable energy, climate change adaptation and mitigation, municipal service delivery, sustainable urban transport, green building design, sustainable sanitation, biodiversity, sustainable procurement, and other allied fields.
Based in the Philippines, the ICLEI Southeast Asia Secretariat (ICLEI SEAS), with project offices in Jakarta, Indonesia (hosted by the APEKSI or the Association of Indonesian Municipalities) and Lao PDR, currently works with initiatives in Indonesia, Philippines, and Thailand, and caters to the needs of the Southeast Asian region in general. ICLEI SEAS began its work with the Cities for Climate Protection (CCP) Campaign in 1999. Since then, it has been expanding rapidly, becoming involved with new and evolving campaigns and programs that enable and empower local governments. Areas of expertise include climate change adaptation and mitigation, sustainability management, water and sanitation, and biodiversity. ICLEI SEAS continuously inspires and invites more partnerships from cities and urban regions that want to be at the forefront of creating resilient and sustainable communities.