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2nd International Conference on Learning Cities

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© UNESCO
28 September 2015

Laying the foundation for sustainable development through learning cities

Mexico City, Mexico, 28 September 2015 – UNESCO and the Government of Mexico City have brought together more than 600 political leaders, mayors, city education executives and civil society representatives from more than 90 countries for the 2nd International Conference on Learning Cities to shape and further the role of cities in achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. With the theme, ‘Building Sustainable Learning Cities’, the Conference that will run from 28-30 September 2015 will enable participants to discuss, share experiences and build synergies on how to provide and promote human dignity through learning.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

'This international conference takes place at a critical moment when world leaders are meeting to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will define the next 15 years of human development’, says Arne Carlsen, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL). ‘Cities have a crucial role to play in promoting education and lifelong learning and achieving sustainable development in all three of its dimensions: social, economic and environmental’.
The 2nd International Conference on Learning Cities aims to provide support in all areas of sustainable development, focusing particularly on Goals 4 and 11: ‘Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’ and ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’.

Towards building sustainable learning cities

The 2nd International Conference on Learning Cities will set the stage for the continued development of sustainable learning cities around the world, promote partnerships and networks and discuss the implementation of the Key Features of Learning Cities. Experts will share their perspectives on how learning cities enhance global citizenship and environmental stewardship, health and well-being of citizens and promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth.

Unlocking the potential of urban communities

More and more, cities are playing a key role in direct allocation of resources and implementation of education programmes. Together with twelve cities, UIL has published a book that showcases cities’ efforts to improve people’s quality of life through lifelong learning. The publication, Unlocking the Potential of Urban Communities: Case Studies of Twelve Learning Cities, has been launched today and the twelve cities:

  • Melton (Australia),
  • Sorocaba (Brazil),
  • Beijing (China),
  • Bahir Dar (Ethiopia),
  • Espoo (Finland),
  • Cork (Ireland),
  • Amman (Jordan),
  • Mexico City (Mexico),
  • Ybycuí (Paraguay),
  • Balanga (Philippines),
  • Namyangju (Republic of Korea)
  • Swansea (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland)

featured in it have been given the UNESCO Learning City Award 2015. Mexico City, one of the featured cities, is committed to continue building ’a more resilient society where everyone has access to the learning tools that enable better social, economic and environmental skills to address the challenges that the twenty-first century brings’. Miguel Ángel Mancera Espinosa, Mayor of Mexico City