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 in Asia, Africa and South America in developing community-wide 100 percent renewable energy strategies, by increasing awareness and stakeholder engagement and assessing project concepts, financeability and implementation plans. (175 cities: globally)
We strategize ways to increase the value of existing buildings through significant energy and architectural transformation, ranging from facade additions to rooftop extensions, in order to reach the Nearly Zero Energy Buildings and extreme renovation goal in Europe. (Europe)
We support and promote sustainable production of renewable resources from land, fisheries and aquaculture, and their conversion into bio-based products and bio-energy to drive growth in new jobs and industries in the bio-economy in Europe. (Europe).
We accelerate the implementation of building efficiency policies and programs across cities in the Global South, in direct support of the Building Efficiency Accelerator, in order to translate global expertise into action in cities. (6 cities: Southeast Asia)
We mobilize and guide local and regional governments in Europe to develop long-term energy policy priorities, while promoting a multilevel governance approach and supporting the development, financing and implementation of integrated sustainable energy and climate action plans, enabling cities to achieve climate resilience and carbon neutrality by 2050. (70+ cities: Europe)
We strengthen the capacities of Indian cities to identify, plan and implement measures to achieve low carbon growth and enhance resilience, positioning cities to address the growing demand for energy, infrastructure and services. (4 cities and 4 regions: South Asia)
We created contribution analysis methodology to illustrate the drivers of change in greenhouse gas emissions over time, informing a city or region of program efficacy and opportunities to advocate stronger policy across multiple levels of government in the United States. (20 cities, 3 regions: North America)
We promote the implementation of short-lived climate pollutant reduction strategies by mobilizing and empowering the health sector and demonstrating the full range of health benefits that can be achieved at the city level. (Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia)
We strengthen the capacities of cities in Africa to provide access to sufficient, sustainable and safe energy and related services to urban and peri-urban populations, with special attention to energy efficiency and renewable energy as drivers for local low emission, climate resilient, sustainable development. (13 cities: Africa)
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)