We need more Brussels not less!


As the Brussels Summit  comes to a close, important reflections come to mind in relation to its significance for the global context.


From the perspective of the largest World Organization of United Cities and Local Governments, (in the words of the founders: the United Nations of Cities), the Summit is certainly more than a gathering of mayors, governors and practitioners, mobilized through the networks (not a minor achievement in itself!) but it is about demonstrating that local multilateralism, driven by city diplomacy, can be the critical piece to help the world move away from pitfalls that are putting sustainability, peace and rights in peril.


With members (over 250.000 though their associations) in almost every country, UCLG has closed the Summit with the celebration of its Executive Bureau. 250 representatives adopted a strong call for the defense of human rights everywhere and against any type of discrimination. They further ratified the condemnation of war and unwavering support to the people of Ukraine enduring a cruel war, of Turkey and Syria suffering the aftermath of the earthquake.  Clear signs of solidarity were made with local governments that are trying to manage migration putting dignity at the core.


The meetings have ratified the need to put care at the center of local service delivery and has confirmed its self-declaration as a feminist municipal movement aware of the need to safeguard the rights of the most vulnerable and in particular of women and girls everywhere.


These all has been done through a transformative diplomacy that puts dialogue and not negotiation at the heart of its work. The above, are collective stands that go in many cases beyond the individual ones and keep all members on board. They are positions which reflect how far a not-likeminded community can go. They are inclusive dialogues, with everyone around the table. These are the kind of exercises that need to be the backbone of policies for a global intertwined humanity that will evolve together towards a sustainable future OR it will not have a future at all.


Read the full editorial here 👇


Read about all the coverage of our Bureau here👇