Partnership with USP for first regional office of the Cities Programme

Already strong, the engagement of Brazilian cities in the United Nations Global Compact looks set to skyrocket.

The international secretariat of the United Nations Global Compact – Cities Programme and the University of São Paulo (USP) – with RMIT University – have entered into a partnership to establish the first regional office of the Cities Programme at USP in São Paulo, Brazil.

The Memorandum of Understanding was signed at the United Nations Global Compact Headquarters in New York City by Rector and President of the University of São Paulo, Professor Dr Marco Antonio Zago and Chair of the UN Global Compact – Cities Programme, Michael Nolan.

The new office already has strong support from local and global partners. The event was attended by leaders from the United Nations Global Compact, Paraná state government, industry and international organisations such as UN-Habitat and the World Economic Forum.

Rector Marco Antonio Zago is very pleased with this new partnership and the opportunities it will bring to Brazil and Latin America.

“We want to help the municipalities in our country – and across the continent – not just survive, but thrive”.

“Our academics want to contribute their expertise to urban projects and work in partnership with citizens, municipal governments, the private sector and civil society. Brazil needs this platform for partnerships to affect real change”.

The office will be led by USP Head of Environmental Affairs, Professor Patricia Iglecias and Rosane de Souza, who has represented the Cities Programme in Brazil for the past four years from the Paraná state government. They will be supported from Australia, by Cities Programme Deputy Director, Elizabeth Ryan.

A range of targeted services will be offered to Brazilian municipalities and states, including facilitating multi-sector task forces for sustainable urban development projects.

Michael Nolan says “We believe the new regional office based at the University of São Paulo will be a great foundation to scale up partnerships and projects to advance the Sustainable Development Goals and the New Urban Agenda.”

“In 2018 we will be working with USP to rollout our City Partnerships offer across Brazil – the first country following its current pilot in Australia”.

The international secretariat of the United Nations Global Compact – Cities Programme, has been hosted by RMIT University in Melbourne Australia since 2007.

RMIT Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation and Vice-President, Professor Calum Drummond sees trans-disciplinary research and bi-lateral collaboration coming from this partnership and the new Regional office.

“We welcome the partnership with the University of São Paulo and see a wealth of opportunities to collaborate on research that makes a difference to communities and cities – in Brazil and Latin America – but also around the world”.

“We look forward to hosting our new Brazilian partners from the University of São Paulo and industry and government here in Melbourne. This partnership will strengthen ties between Brazil and Australia”.