Fulfilling its role as the urban platform in Geneva, the Geneva Cities Hub (GCH) co-convened an informal urban briefing with UN-Habitat on 7 February 2022 targeting Geneva-based international organizations and international city networks. The objective was to raise awareness, mobilize and engage those stakeholders in view of important upcoming urban meetings in the first half of 2022. To do so, GCH invited UNECE to provide more information about the Forum of Mayors (4-5 April, Geneva), and UN-Habitat briefed about the World Urban Forum (26-30 June, Katowice). The Office of the President of the UN General Assembly also took part in the briefing to inform about the High Level Meeting on the New Urban Agenda (as per GA resolution 75/224) (28 April, New York) that will look at urbanization as a cross-cutting issue and foster urban policies as means to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
The informal briefing also provided an opportunity to update the Geneva urban community about the work of the UN Taskforce on the future of cities, which met on 26 January to discuss the draft terms of reference of the Advisory Group on Local and Regional Governments, put forward by the UN Secretary General in his Common Agenda (§119).
2022 is an important year from the urban point of view. Both local and regional governments, and the international community in Geneva, should seize the opportunity to contribute to these gatherings and better connect to one each other to more effectively address global challenges.