13 Dec 2018
Cities Programme joins Mastercard to drive sustainable development partnerships

Global financial company Mastercard are collaborating with the United Nations Global Compact – Cities Programme to launch a world-first community of practice network for innovative finance solutions to drive sustainable development partnerships.

Pioneered by Mastercard, City Possible is a new model of public-private partnerships that brings together cities with a united private sector to solve system-wide challenges.

By codeveloping, piloting and scaling solutions, it strengthens the new triple bottom line: people, cities and businesses.

The Cities Programme international secretariat, hosted at RMIT University  in Melbourne, Australia, will help lead partnerships that can accelerate implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The network aims to share knowledge and experience on creating and growing local hubs for local governments, the private sector and civil society, to better connect, collaborate, build capacity and invest in sustainable urban solutions at a local city level.

Director of Cities Programme Michael Nolan said the international secretariat was thrilled at the opportunity to lead this initiative in partnership with Mastercard.

“Building capacity to create transformative projects in partnership that can attract investment is a critical need at a local and regional level,” he said.

“Knowledge sharing and robust relationship building between the private sector, civil society, and local or territorial government agencies is vital for achieving local Sustainable Development Goals impact.”

“The goal of the community of practice is to increase coordination among actors that share the same goals and to reduce overlap among them.”

“It will help bridge global actors that want to connect with local partners and initiatives,  including the local hubs of Local2030.”

“Through this partnership with Mastercard and participating cities will be assisted to develop its identified opportunities into scalable business cases ready for investment and implementation.”

Mastercard is a participant of the UN Global Compact and are joining Danish philanthropy organisation Realdania to support the Cities Programme’s CityPartnerships Challenge – a two-year capacity development, facilitation and coaching process for city and regional city governments.

Under leadership of the Cities Programme, the City Partnerships Challenge has brought together UN Global Compact entities including Local Networks (country based local corporate networks of the UN Global Compact), local chapters of the Principles for Responsible Management Education and the Principles for Responsible Investment to drive a capacity building process for cities project and financing development.

“Our City Partnerships Challenge provides a proven process of engagement across sectors to create collaborative local projects with ‘non-traditional’ partners to address critical issues in innovative ways,” Nolan said.

“We hope that through the City Possible, stronger experience sharing between government, industry and community leaders can deliver improved systems and processes for planning, investing in and implementing sustainable urban development.”