Cities are complex systems. The components of urban systems, from food distribution networks and energy grids to transport and greenways, are interconnected and dynamic. Intervening to create change in any one of these components may impact others, creating systemic change. Designing solutions that take these interconnections into account is critical to sustainable development.
The five ICLEI pathways towards low emission, nature-based, equitable, resilient and circular development are designed to create systemic change. When these pathways guide local and regional development, urban systems becomes more sustainable. The pathways provide provide a framework for designing integrated solutions that balance the patterns of human life and the built and natural environments. They encourage holistic thinking. For instance, working together, the local and regional governments and global experts of ICLEI consider how nature-based development contributes to resilience, or how to bring equity into low emission development.
We design our work to integrate as many pathways as possible. Each individual pathway is multidimensional, incorporating numerous strategies for sustainable development. When more pathways are integrated into any given activity, such as a project, partnership or initiative, a greater degree of change can occur. Often, our activities are guided by a predominant pathway or set of pathways. In any given city or region, multiple activities may be implemented along each pathway.
This searchable digital collection of our activities worldwide includes technical resources, including digital platforms, methodologies and tools, as well as networks, projects, programs, partnerships, events and initiatives that guide action along the pathways, spark new partnerships and create city-to-city and city-to-region connections.
Each entry in this digital collection is marked with predominant pathways, keywords and related Sustainable Development Goals.
We support cities and regions laying out their 2050 visions for sustainable societies and climate neutrality, encouraging them to join KYOTO+20 and cultivate sustainable cities that are in balance with the local and global environment. (globally)
We engage in innovative research to look at the role that personal perception and individual and cultural values play in the interpretation of climate risk narratives in Africa. (3 cities: Africa)
We provide technical support to assess urban waste management baselines, engaging all relevant stakeholders in dialogue to arrive at potential mechanisms, plans and projects to address waste management issues in South Asian cities, while preparing for future growth. (2 cities: South Asia)
We assess the potential for district energy systems, which produce steam, hot water or chilled water at a central plant, making them much more efficient and less energy consuming, and develop integrated roadmaps for energy policy and investment in South Asia. (5 cities: South Asia)
We manage the East Asia Clean Air Cities program, aiming to foster regional cooperation between local governments, partners and solution providers from academia and private sectors, as a response to the urgent need for air quality improvements. (9 cities: East Asia)
We build capacity across local governments to develop and implement low carbon urban freight policies and practices through urban freight emission assessment tools, pilot demonstration projects, taking a multilevel governance approach designed to shape national policy recommendations.
(3+ cities: South America, South Asia)
We lead the EcoMobility Alliance in pioneering integrated transport options that are environmentally-friendly, socially inclusive and urban space-friendly, by connecting them with experts, businesses and international organizations, ultimately strengthening sustainable urban transport globally. (23 cities: globally)
We stimulate new mobility policies which put people rather than cars at the center, by organizing EcoMobility World Festivals that turn a single neighborhood into an ecomobile, car-free zone for one month, coinciding with a global congress that sparks debate on low emission, human centered and city friendly mobility. (globally)
We prepare a coherent and representative framework on sustainable water management at local level to support the implementation of the European Union water policy and the SDG's. (25 cities: Europe)
We close the cities and finance gap through infrastructure project pipelining for the European Investment Bank, with cities across Mexico. (5 cities: Latin America & Caribbean)