23 Feb 2012
The Cities Programme And Metropolis Work Together In India

The UN Global Compact, Cities Programme (UNGCCP) and Metropolis, are building on their collaborative partnership in an exciting new initiative that will support Indian cities to build public private-partnerships that support sustainable urban growth and development.

The joint Cities Programme- Metropolis Initiative proposal was approved by the Metropolis World Congress in Porto Alegre, Brazil in November 2011 and will be launched in New Delhi in April 2012.

A global association of local and regional governments of large cities and metropolitan regions, Metropolis works to enhance urban sustainability by assisting metropolises with mutual learning, innovation, governance, financial and technical assistance and international representation. As a leading member city Melbourne is home to the Metropolis Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, this is hosted by the Victorian Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCP).

Following the outcomes of the Metropolis mission to India in June – July 2011 the initiative draws upon earlier collaborative work by the UNGCCP and the DPCP that that culminated in the Metropolis2 report, Managing Urban Growth, 2011. It is an exciting opportunity to orient the cities’ planning model towards the ‘Melbourne Model’ of cross-sectoral partnerships used by the Cities Programme, encouraging collaboration between local governments, business and civil society.

Mary Lewin, Metropolis Asia-Pacific says that there is much to be gained from Indian cities being skilled to develop truly collaborative public-private partnerships.

“Working with staff in Indian municipal authorities and state government agencies the project will develop a model that incorporates consideration of public private partnerships into a working process. This is designed to assist Indian cities in tackling urgent infrastructure needs in a way that provides locality-sensitive general protocols for decision making on development”.

The working model will be developed in conjunction with the cities of Bangalore and Mumbai with view to extending it to other Indian cities and then possibly to other cities in the Metropolis membership. It will draw upon the UNGCCP integrated approach to assessing, planning and measuring sustainable development, termed the ‘Circles of Sustainability’. This approach suggests that planning should be understood holistically across an integrated series of domains – economics, ecology, politics and culture and, in its most developed form, offers an integrated method for deciding on the critical issues associated with responding to complex problems and then responding to them.

The project will be launched in April and will span two years.