World Cities Day, designated by the United Nations General Assembly, is an annual celebration observed on the 31st of October. This day provides a unique opportunity to spotlight the international community’s interest in global urbanization, stimulate cooperation among nations to address urbanization challenges, and contribute to the pursuit of sustainable urban development worldwide.
Promoting Urban Health: WHO’s Vital Role
The World Health Organization (WHO) actively participates in this celebration, emphasizing the importance of health and well-being in the context of sustainable and inclusive urbanization. As urban areas face a growing set of health concerns, WHO recognizes the need for a comprehensive approach to address non-communicable diseases, infectious diseases, and injuries, including interpersonal violence.
WHO’s Role on World Cities Day
On World Cities Day, WHO takes an active role in organizing various events. These events are designed to launch new technical guidance and tools, disseminate advocacy messages, and raise awareness about urban health issues. They bring together health experts and urban practitioners to collaboratively address the multifaceted challenges that urban areas present.
World Cities Day 2023: “Financing Sustainable Urban Future for All”
The theme of World Cities Day for 2023 is “Financing sustainable urban future for all.” This theme underlines the pressing need to explore how to unlock transformative investments in urban planning and achieve adequate fiscal decentralization. As cities continue to grow and evolve, securing the necessary financial resources and investments becomes pivotal to ensure their sustainability and the well-being of their residents.
The Evolution of World Cities Day
World Cities Day was first celebrated in 2014, and it has been a growing global observance ever since. Similar to World Habitat Day, this annual event is marked by celebrations in different cities around the world each year. The day is an occasion to focus on a specific theme that is relevant to the challenges and opportunities faced by urban areas.
Global Observance in 2023
On the 31st of October, 2023, the Global Observance of World Cities Day will bring together experts, policymakers, and urban planners to explore innovative approaches and strategies to secure the necessary investments for sustainable urban development. Adequate fiscal decentralization will be a central topic of discussion, as it is a critical component of ensuring that cities can effectively plan for the future and provide a high quality of life for all their residents.