On Sept 14, the 15 shortlisted cities of the 6th Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation (Guangzhou Award) were officially released, namely: Antalya, Turkiye; Bogotá, Colombia; Cape Town, South Africa; Gwangju, Korea; Halandri, Greece; Iztapalapa, Mexico; Jakarta, Indonesia; Kampala, Uganda; Kazan, Russia; Mannheim, Germany; Pimpri Chinchwad, India; Ramallah, Palestine; São Paulo, Brazil; Tehran, Iran; and Xianning, China.
A total of 274 initiatives from 193 cities and regions in 54 countries submitted their applications for the 6th Guangzhou Award. Five countries submitted for the very first time. A technical committee of 11 international experts met in the Guangzhou Library from Sept 11-14 to select deserving initiatives based on several aspects. This includes innovation, effectiveness, context, replicability, and their relevance to the local implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the New Urban Agenda (NUA). The technical committee selected 45 such initiatives, from which 15 shortlisted cities stood out.
Zhang Yajie, vice chairman of the Guangzhou Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference; Emilia Saiz, secretary general of UCLG; and Jordi Vaquer, secretary general of Metropolis, addressed the announcement conference and expressed their appreciation of Guangzhou's contributions to urban innovation and global sustainable development.
"The initiatives collected by the 6th Guangzhou Award fully reflect the strong determination and great faith cities across the world have in creative governance as well as innovation and sustainable development in the new era," remarked Zhang.
Both Saiz and Vaquer recognized the efforts of the Guangzhou Award in promoting exchanges in global urban governance and sustainable development. Saiz said that the Guangzhou Award has become a space for the recognition, documentation, and dissemination of localized knowledge.
Vaquer said, "With Metropolis partnering with Guangzhou and UCLG on the Guangzhou Award for over 10 years, I see a community of innovators that are committed to sharing for mutual benefit."
Azza Sirry, chair of the technical committee, introduced that this year's Guangzhou Award received many high-quality submissions, whether from the perspective of urban innovative development, or the attention to social inclusion and civic participation. These initiatives all boasted advanced representativeness and reference value.
Together with other experts and scholars, Kobie Brand, deputy secretary general of ICLEI, chief executive officer, and regional director of ICLEI Africa; and Dyan Currie, chief planner of the Brisbane City Council and head of the Brisbane 2032 Host City Office, discussed how to make cities safer and more livable through modernizing urban industrial systems, governance and culture.
The Guangzhou Award has been co-sponsored by Guangzhou, UCLG, and Metropolis since 2012. With more than 1,300 submitted initiatives worldwide over the past five editions, it has become a global platform for knowledge creation and urban innovation.
The list of cities shortlisted for the 6th Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation.
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