Last October 31 was commemorated for the first time the World Cities Day. The role of the cities in the world in recent years has been increasing. Whereas between 2014 and 2050, around 2,500 million more people will live in urban areas, we cannot leave solely to national governments and the international community to face this transformation process by themselves. Another type of participation is needed, one closer to the needs of communities.
In his recent article in El País, Josep Roig, Secretary General of UnitedCities and Local Governments (UCLG), reflects on how cities are leading global transformations. UCLG has decided to influence the inclusion of an urban development goal in the new development agenda, focused on the creation of inclusive cities, with adequate infrastructure and services for all inhabitants.
This new global agenda requires the engagement of cities and local and regional governments, which represent 99.9% of governments worldwide, as well as citizen participation to ensure success. However, these local and regional governments must be equipped with the necessary and legal means, so they can attend to needs of citizens and facilitate the voices of those most in need.