Conference Report: Fourth International Conference on Learning Cities

  • December 2019

The report of the fourth International Conference on Learning Cities (ICLC 4) provides a detailed account of the conversations and knowledge exchange that took place during this important event in Medellín, Colombia, under the theme ‘Inclusion – A principle for lifelong learning and sustainable cities’.

Alongside the President of Colombia, who opened the conference, around 650 participants, including 50 mayors, as well as government representatives and experts from all UNESCO world regions, came together to share new initiatives and discuss challenges to meeting the needs of the most vulnerable populations. The event comprised three plenary sessions on policies for inclusion at the local level, governance structures to support inclusive policy, and monitoring mechanisms for learning cities. Thematic forums on inclusion of specific vulnerable groups in cities, including the digitally excluded, migrants, elderly populations and youth-at-risk, ran parallel. A mayors’ forum and an outline of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities’ future strategy rounded out the event.

Across all sessions, mayors, other city representatives and experts in the field were invited to showcase and debate initiatives for inclusive lifelong learning in cities. The Conference Report reflects this rich exchange: structured according to the various sessions, it details the information shared by cities and serves as a valuable resource of best practice and expertise in inclusive lifelong learning.

With the publication of this report and other ongoing activities, the UNESCO GNLC will continue to promote the theme of inclusion in cities.

Download full report


  • Author/Editor: UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning
  • Conference report: Inclusion, a principle for lifelong learning and sustainable cities
  • UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, 2019
  • ISBN
  • Available in: English, French, Spanish