Habitat III: Local Authorities Hearings at the UN

As the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) approaches, the process for Habitat III continues the elaboration of the New Urban Agenda document that will be adopted in October 2016, in Quito. Recognized as a specific constituency by the UN, local authorities will be in New York, from 15 to 17 May 2016, to take part in the Local Authority Hearings and the Second World Assembly of Local and Regional Governments.

The Local Authority Hearings are a UN consultative process. The General Assembly adopted a resolution on the participation modalities for the Habitat III conference and Local authorities are invited to exchange views with countries during those hearings on the zero draft document of the New Urban Agenda. The resolution also recognizes the organization of the Second World Assembly of Local and Regional Governments.

The World Assembly is the process by which local authorities will contribute to the process of Habitat III. Their contribution will be made in three parts. the first session will take place in New York, on May 15th, the second session will be held in Bogota in October, and the last session will take place in October in Quito, within the framework of the Habitat III Conference

The network of the local and regional governments under the aegis of the Global Taskforce is aware of the importance of these informal hearings which mark the potential “start of renewed global governance”. Therefore, the Global Taskforce will bring recommendations aiming mainly at strengthening the decentralization and recognizing local authorities as ” the closest partner ” for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda. It also recommends the necessity of developing a single universal agenda which is connected with the other big international agendas in particular with the SDGs and with the Paris Agreement on the climate.

These recommendations are a preliminary input into the current negotiations on the New Urban Agenda. The text is a changing document that will be updated in response to ongoing policy discussions and the Zero Draft of the Agenda, which will be issued shortly.

To know more about the Global Taskforce recommendations for Habitat III, visit the website here.