I am seated in not-so-comfy but chic white couches in the public arena of the world’s largest gathering of local and regional leaders: World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders, taking place in Bogota, Colombia. It is the three yearly gathering of the United Cities and Local Government (UCLG) where they seek to foster common purpose amongst the world’s local and regional governments in concert with key civil society networks.

One of the highlights of the week is the launch of the GOLD IV report, which sets out a comprehensive argument and set of policy recommendations to guide the priorities of local and regional governments and the larger development community. It explicitly seeks to position local governments as pivotal leaders in the international efforts to join up the implications of the SDGs, the Paris Agreement and the New Urban Agenda that will be adopted at Habitat III in Quito next week. Anton Cartwright, Mark Swilling and myself worked on the Conclusions and Recommendations chapter of this flagship report that can be downloaded now.

– Edgar Pieterse

12 October 2016, Bogota.