ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network working with more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development.


ICLEI World Secretariat
Kaiser-Friedrich-Str. 7
53113 Bonn

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network working with more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development.

ICLEI Regional Secretariats and country offices

ICLEI Global Events

Connecting local sustainability professionals globally


Through our events, we connect professionals working on innovative approaches to local sustainability challenges. We create collaborative spaces where they can share their experiences, learn from one another, and bring home valuable insights to advance local sustainable development in their cities, towns, regions and communities.

Our events put the spotlight on current sustainability challenges that cities, towns and regions are facing worldwide, moving them from writing on a page to faces and voices in a room. Bringing people together adds a personal dimension to local challenges, and gives participants and stakeholders the knowledge and motivation to bring sustainable solutions home.

Events with purpose

Designing events for ICLEI’s vision

ICLEI’s Global Events team designs spaces where attendees can disconnect from their day-to-day work and focus on interactive knowledge exchange and forging new connections and partnerships. For many Members, our events provide a rare opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals who face similar challenges in advancing sustainability. By bringing together local and regional representatives from around the world to exchange knowledge and establish valuable connections, we create a sense of community that helps advance collective commitments and meaningful action toward achieving local sustainability worldwide.

Our events strive to go beyond traditional presentations by providing participants with the opportunity to learn new approaches to sustainability first hand. Many ICLEI events incorporate site visits or other on-site learning experiences where participants can see sustainability practice in situ and be inspired to adapt them to the needs of their own communities.

Finally, we strategically position our events to showcase ICLEI’s work and provide a comprehensive overview of what we do. We support and enhance the work of the ICLEI Network by leveraging events to establish new partnerships, and ensure our existing partnerships continue to grow and thrive.

Developing events in a digital world

We strongly believe that the intrinsic value of meeting face-to-face is a vital component for advancing new ideas, forging new partnerships, and fostering multilateral dialogue and exchange. In-person events bring out the creativity and authenticity of participants and provide a space to better voice their interest and support for our vision of local sustainability.

We also acknowledge that events come with costs to the environment and can be limited in accessibility. As virtual events and meetings become more mainstream, we are presented with an important opportunity to reduce the overall environmental impact of events and make them accessible to more diverse audiences.

Despite this, not all event formats and purposes can be as effectively replicated or achieved virtually as they could in-person.  We strive to strike a strategic balance between in person and virtual events to drive successful event outcomes.

Designing events for all

When planning and hosting events, ICLEI strives to choose formats and models that can most effectively help us achieve the goals of the event, while also prioritizing sustainability and equitability principles. Through this approach we are able to “walk the talk” and ensure that our events not only feature content that moves the needle on sustainable development but are themselves designed to represent these principles.

    • Select venues and accommodation which are sustainably certified and make efforts to decrease energy, water, and raw material use
    • Procure catering which prioritizes local and seasonal foods, ideally those which are organic and plant-based
    • Reduce to an absolute minimum the amount of material production required (consider whether event swag is needed), and plan how produced materials can be reused or recovered after the event
    • Offer a local transport option that is safe and sustainable by working with local transport providers and selecting venues and accommodations close together where possible
    • Work with vendors, funders, and service providers whose values align with our own
    • Find ways to achieve meaningful inclusion of under-represented voices and perspectives not only among event speakers, but also in event planning and program design
    • Actively invited speakers from diverse backgrounds and perspectives e.g. gender, regional, type of organization
    • Provide funding support when possible for travel and accommodation for disadvantaged groups
    • Apply accessibility criteria when selecting in-person venues and virtual spaces
    • Take active steps to provide formal and informal support to overcome language barriers and promote meaningful exchange

ICLEI’s Global Events team

The Global Events team at the ICLEI World Secretariat plans, designs and implements events that have a global reach and are thematically relevant across ICLEI’s regions. The team has experience designing both stand-alone conferences and events, and  strategic events that feed into broader international policy processes, such as the UNFCCC Climate process. We have developed and curated events to provide direct inputs into the ongoing international climate negotiation processes, leveraging high-level speakers to deliver our key messages and advocate for our policy positions.

The ICLEI Global Events team carries out all aspects of conference and event planning, ranging from overall strategic conceptualization and visioning, to program design and development, to logistical planning and on-the-ground implementation. We have extensive experience in planning events of all scales, ranging from workshops and meetings of 10-50 persons to international 3-5 day conferences for hundreds of participants, as well as month-long festival style events welcoming thousands of participants, and all of these as in-person, fully virtual, and hybrid experiences.

Joseph Wladkowski Head
Data and Knowledge Management & Global Events
Joseph Wladkowski
Data and Knowledge Management & Global Events

Joseph leads the ICLEI Knowledge Management & Global Events team. He manages the strategic development of data and knowledge management systems used by the global organization, and advises on the development and use of sustainability indicators and performance reporting systems. Joseph has also coordinated several of global conferences at ICLEI. He has a background in environmental governance.

Giulia Salvaterra Senior Officer
Global Events
Giulia Salvaterra
Senior Officer
Global Events

Giulia coordinates the planning, organization and implementation of ICLEI’s global events and worked as administrator for the project “Global Platform for Sustainable Cities”, a multi-faceted project under the Global Environment Facility (GEF). With an academic background in foreign languages and tourism management, Giulia has experience in project management and events organization.

Johanna Buchmann Duck Officer
Global Events
Johanna Buchmann Duck
Global Events

Johanna supports the planning and implementation of ICLEI’s global events, ranging from event logistics and technical preparations to participant support and communications. Her previous experience includes policy analysis and event planning with the Canadian federal government. Johanna’s academic background is in environmental management and the relationship between circular economy and biodiversity.

Catalina Schlienger Officer
Global Events
Catalina Schlienger
Global Events

Catalina supports the planning and implementation ICLEI’s global events, mainly focusing on virtual events. She has experience in events management, as well as in communications and recruitment. Catalina has a background in migration and development studies and public policy.

Ipek Genc-Buran Junior Officer
Global Events
Ipek Genc-Buran
Junior Officer
Global Events

Ipek supports the planning and implementation of ICLEI’s global events, from event logistics to participant management and support. Prior to joining ICLEI, she gained experience in climate change – sustainability research and communication. Ipek has a background in urban and regional planning and global change management.

Contact us

For more information, please contact global.events@iclei.org

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