Publishing and Resources

We have a number of platforms in place to enable the exchange of knowledge between city participants and partners about innovative urban practices and effective approaches to collaboration. These systems also enable public recognition of city participant’s achievement and are an aid to the United Nations Global Compact reporting systems – Communication on Engagement and Communication on Progress.

Case studies and support resources

The majority of our resources are developed from the innovative practice of our city and regional participants presented as case studies.

For further information please contact .

Cities for the Future Volume II – share your innovative practice

Share your city, region or organisation’s innovative urban practice and add to the global knowledge of ways to advance the Sustainable Development Agenda

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We are preparing to develop the second volume of our flagship publication, ‘Cities for the Future’. It will be published in late 2017.

All United Nations Global Compact city participants are invited to contribute case studies of their innovative projects and practices.

In this publication we are also inviting contribution from the private sector and Global Compact Local Networks on collaborative initiatives that advance SDG 11: Make Cities Safe, Inclusive, Resilient and Sustainable.

Approximately 30 case studies will be published in the book. All case studies that meet the standard and quality will be published as individual case studies on our website.

This opportunity is available to member participants to the UN Global Compact – Cities Programme.

Sustainable Development Theme

This year’s volume of ‘Cities for the Future’ is gathering material in areas that are specifically beneficial to advancing the new Sustainable Development Agenda.

The key focus areas are:

  • Resilience
  • Housing
  • Livelihoods and Equity
  • Water
  • Food Security
  • Climate and Energy
  • Culture and Heritage
  • Private Sector, CSR and Cities
  • Women and Cities
  • Inclusion and Participation

The Sustainable Development Goals

Case Study Structure

‘Cities for the Future’ is published for the benefit of other cities and it is essential that others can learn from your experience. In submitting your case study, we ask you to outline:

  • Context – a background on your city or region – who and where are you? what is your (brief) history?
  • Challenges – what challenges were you seeking to overcome or address? why did you develop the project
  • Objectives – the aims of the project – what did you work to achieve?
  • Methodology – how did you do what you did?
  • Partners – who else was involved, how did you engage them?
  • Outcomes – what was achieved?
  • Lessons learned – what was the key learning from the project  – what would you suggest others do, what would you do differently if you did it again?
  • The Ten Principles and SDGs – what broad global goals and principles were you advancing through your action?

Process for submission

1. Provide an overview of your case study and its connection to the SDGs and Ten Principles through an  Expression of Interest Form.

2. You will be notified of acceptance by email. There may be additional questions about the project.

3. If successful, develop a case study:

  • following the structure outlined above
  • with a word count of between 1500 and 2000 words.
  • case study must be submitted within three months of expressing interest. 

4. If desired, the case study can be in two languages, your country’s language and english.

5. Also send high resolution images that illustrate the case studies. These should be in jpg of tiff format (300 DPI)

6. The case study will be edited and sent back to you for review and approval.

Check out the first volume of ‘Cities for the Future’

Cities_for_the_Future-Cover_PRINTDownload ‘Cities for the Future’ as a reference for style and structure of content.

Submit Your Interest

Express your interest by filling out this form here.

Feel free to direct queries to Elizabeth Ryan, managing editor for ‘Cities for the Future’:
+61 3 9925 3407

How to submit and publish projects

In 2016, the international secretariat developed a new user-driven project publishing and reporting platform for city, regional and partner participants of the United Nations Global Compact. It is called ‘Global Compact Projects for Urban Sustainability’. This platform enables participants to plan, report and connect projects in connection to the Sustainable Development Goals and the UN Global Compact Principles (the related SDGs and principles display visually on the project page). This page provides an overview of how the project publishing system works.

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In 2016, the International Secretariat developed a new user-driven project publishing and reporting platform for city, regional and partner participants of the United Nations Global Compact. It is called ‘Global Compact Projects for Urban Sustainability’.

This platform enables participants to plan, report and connect projects in connection to the Sustainable Development Goals and the UN Global Compact Principles (project-related SDGs and principles display visually on each project page). The system is simple and accessible and allows users to publish projects, amend them during the life of the project, update with images and videos, and reflect on and share learnings at the completion of a project. Highlights, news and achievements related to the project can be published in separate posts.

Here we provide an overview of how the project publishing system works.

There are six types of projects (one is selected):

  • Commitment Project – a key urban initiative that the Global Compact participant (government, private sector, NGO) links to its commitment to the UN Global Compact – publishing and reporting is connected to the Ten Principles and the SDGs
  • Innovating Project – managed and delivered by a cross-sectoral group comprising government, private sector and civil society
  • Leading Project – part of participant city’s Leading-level engagement, it usually follows a City Scan diagnostic
  • International Collaboration – a project that is between multiple parties and has an international focus, is between cities and other organisations from different countries, or is international funded
  • Regional Collaboration – a project that is between a number of cities and other actors and is on a regional scale
  • Research Project – an investigative project that is increasing knowledge to support the Ten Principles and SDGs

User rights and passwords are issued by the International Secretariat of the UN Global Compact – Cities Programme. Projects (and project updates) are submitted as drafts, with final editing, review and publishing undertaken by the Secretariat’s communications team.

The structure of the new project publishing system follows a standardised project management structure that allows members to plan, document and publish a project in editable sections that correlate with critical components of project planning and life. These include sections for:

  • Context
  • Challenges
  • Objectives
  • Partners
  • Planned strategy
  • Measurement
  • Actions
  • Outcomes and achievements
  • Lessons learned
  • Future plans/follow on actions

‘Global Compact Projects for Urban Sustainability’ can be published at any point – at the project’s onset, during its implementation, upon completion or retrospectively.

Updates can be made to the project as it progresses. Project updates and achievements can also be published separately through news posts. These post updates publish in connection to the project and the city/partner. These posts and projects will be displayed as an increasing amount of activity.

The page is dynamic and visual – videos and images can be easily uploaded at any point. These are presented as a filmstrip of images and playable clips. Individual captions for images allow the finer detail of project stories to be told.

The project page has been designed in a style that is both uniform and standard but allows for individuality.

Multiple language versions of a project are allowed and encouraged.

Benefits of the new project publishing system include:

  • Providing city participants of the UN Global Compact with an accessible and aesthetically pleasing ‘Communication on Progress’ report development tool for major corporate social responsibility urban projects.
  • Enabling city governments and other leaders to link leading urban projects to the new Sustainable Development Goals and the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact.
  • Improving the case studies, good practice and knowledge exchange between UN Global Compact participant cities and others.
  • Enabling recognition of the multiple partners that contribute to successful urban projects.

Contact us to request publishing access: We will send you further information and a user name and password.

Feature Image: Women from the Masikanye urban agriculture project in Khayelitsha township, Cape Town, South Africa (Credit – Ben Mansfield).