|Organization: Inter-American Development Bank|
|The Rockefeller Foundation|
What will our cities look like during the next Habitat Conference (2036)? We tend to think about the future of our cities through a technological and futuristic approach, but we rarely think about a city’s future from the perspective of how individuals connect with their governments. Many local governments continue employing practices that date back to the 1970’s; meanwhile urban populations communicate using technology from the 21st Century. It seems as if governments have limited themselves to offering information to their constituents, dismissing the potential benefits of e-government interactive platforms.
At the IDB we envision the future of cities by having empowered citizens. We are keen in the 2.0 version of government, where there’s an active collaboration between institutions and citizens, and a bottom-up approach in decision-making. This new relationship is shaping our cities in an unprecedented way and should be empowered by gatherings such as Habitat III. Millennials are already leading this transformation, using social networks, the sharing economy, and access to information and data; all which inadvertently affect cities. Can city governments around the globe keep up?
This event will analyze in a first panel how technological breakthroughs will change the future of Governance. Renowned public sector leaders will come together to discuss best practices and the way in which local governments in the region can learn from these experiences. A second panel will turn to the challenges of Financing Urban Infrastructure and Climate Change– two issues that go hand in hand in today’s cities. With over half of the world’s population living in urban areas, there is an urgency to increase access to sub‐national infrastructure investments. In this session, experts will discuss what sustainable urban infrastructure is; what it will take for cities to increase capital investments; and how to create the right incentives to encourage private sector participation.