Pandemic prevention, preparedness and response: what do local authorities bring to the global debate?

March 16, 2022 1:30 pm
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As the international community embarks on a global debate to strengthen pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, it is important to consider the crucial work undertaken at municipal level to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic and to prevent and respond to possible future pandemics.

Given their capacity to foster a multi-stakeholder approach and the fact that they deal with many dimensions of “urban health”, municipal authorities are also deeply involved in the response to the pandemic which has been affecting our lives for more than 2 years now. Due to their proximity to their population, their knowledge and understanding of the local actors and context, cities and urban settings are crucial to prevent, prepare for, and recover from health emergencies.

This Geneva Urban Debate explores: Which municipal experiences are relevant for the next pandemic in terms of prevention, preparedness and response? Which ones are worth replicating or scaling up to strengthen global action against future pandemics? How can best practices translate into concrete decisions and policies to ensure better urban health?


Light refreshments will be served before the event (13h00)



Welcoming remarks: Ms. Anh Thu Duong, Co-Director, Geneva Cities Hub and Mr. Graham Alabaster, Chief, Geneva Office, UN-Habitat




  • Dr. Mpabwanamaguru Merard, deputy mayor of Kigali, Rwanda
  • Ms. Begoña Villacís Sánchez, deputy mayor of Madrid, Spain
  • Mr. Axel Grael, Mayor of Niteroi, Brazil
  • Mr. Graham Alabaster, Chief, Geneva Office, UN-Habitat
  • Ms. Nathalie Roebbel, Unit Head, Urban Health, WHO
  • Mr. Ludy Prapancha Suryantoro, Unit Head, Multisectoral Engagement for Health Security, WHO
  • Mr. José Alvarez, Policy Officer, United Cities and Local Governments
  • Ms. Lyda Osorio, Universidad del Valle Cali, Colombia
  • Mr. Nicolas Gharbi, Principal Advisor at the city of Madrid, Spain


Moderation: Mr. András Szörényi, Senior Policy Advisor, Geneva Cities Hub




Watch the video of the event.