The event will first showcase the World Forum of Cities and Territories of Peace forum process (WF), a multi-stakeholder partnership aimed at promoting coexistence and peace in cities and territories. It started in 2017 – with its first two editions held in Madrid under the leadership of the mayors of Madrid, Paris, and Barcelona -with the participation of more than 10,000 people together and more than 100 countries and cities from all over the world. The 3rd edition of the WF, which will be held in Mexico City in October 2021, was launched with a virtual preparatory event celebrated 5-7 October 2020. The WF process brings together LRGs, academia, civil society, and UN agencies to debate and promote holistic concepts of building and sustaining peace from the bottom up.
In a second part, members of the WF process will introduce their approach to addressing fragility and peace building within their territories. With unprecedentedly fast urbanization rates, cities are becoming the focal point of global poverty, conflict, and vulnerability to disasters—particularly when situated within a “fragile state.” But fragility is not a permanent condition as for example the case of Bogota demonstrates. The transition of Bogota and a range of other Colombian cities away from fragility is exemplary. Bogotá, the capital, was rated one of Latin America’s top destinations for foreign direct investment in 2017. Whether in Colombia or elsewhere, the pulse of cities offers insight into the overall health of countries. Yet surprisingly little is known about the well-being of most of the world’s cities, many of them growing ever more fragile.
And finally, the panel will adopt at a development cooperation angle by showcasing different initiatives working from the bottom up to address fragility.