The United Nations has designated every 31st of October as World Cities Day. The Day is
expected to greatly promote the international community's interest in global urbanization, push
forward cooperation among countries in meeting opportunities and addressing challenges of
urbanization, and contributing to sustainable urban development around the world.



Cities around the world are planning activities and events to celebrate World Habitat Day and World Cities Day
this October. Register your event today to be listed in this page.



The Network for Promotion of Agriculture and Environmental Studies plans to celebrate World Cities Day on 31 October 2017 in Accra through an event to share information and educate communities for sustainable development.


Kpakpando Foundation, a community based organization that advocates for equal rights for persons with disabilities, celebrated World Cities Day in Abuja Nigeria on the 30 October 2017. This day also marked the organization’s 12th Anniversary. The key note speaker was Mrs. Patricia Ovuoke Oseh, the Director General of Kpakpando Foundation and Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities International Inc. who took the opportunity to highlight the achievements realized by the organization. The speaker especially noted the role of UN DSPD/DESA in recognition of the rights of people living with disabilities in Nigeria, and presented the UN DSPD/DESA Toolkit on Disability for Africa.

Awka Capital Territory Development Authority celebrated World Cities Day on 31 October 2017. Among those present were the Governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano, his deputy-Prof. Nkem Okeke and Arch. Michael Okonkwo. A panel discussion was held with a focus on World Habitat day theme, Housing Policies: Affordable Homes, and specific theme "Enabling future cities to be smart; Strategies to prevent urban poverty and promote social inclusion and wellbeing." These conversations highlighted the application of good strategies to combat the effects of urbanization in Anambra state and other major cities in Nigeria. For more information, visit

South Africa

Government of South Africa through the national Department of Human Settlement and Department of Cooperative governance and Traditional Affairs working together with eThekwini Municipality and other strategic partners namely, South African Local Government Association and South African Cities Network is hosting national observation of World Cities Day on 31 October 2017 in Durban. The Government and all partners aim to use this day to facilitate discussion on the national implementation for the New Urban Agenda. The day will have three sessions. There will be a high-level session where political leadership will have a roundtable discussion on the New Urban Agenda followed by a moderated session on the implementation plan and lastly the community session where political leadership with all participants will visit the identified community to celebrate and hand over a revitalised public open space.

South Africa celebrated the launch of the World Cities Days, under the theme of “Innovative Governance, Open Cities”, in the city of Durban on 31 October. The World Cities Day was part of eThekwini Urban Week, which comprised the South Africa Cities Urban Conference on 30 October and the 2nd Africa Forum for Urban Safety (AFUS) Learning Exchange taking place on 1-3 November 2017.

The Mayor of eThekwini Municipality Ms Zandile Gumede, the Deputy Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) Mr Andries Nel, the Deputy Minister of Human Settlements Ms Zou Kota-Fredericks, the UN-Habitat’s Director of External Relations Division Ms Christine Musisi, and the President of South African Local Government Association (SALGA) and United Cities and Local Government (UCLG) Mr Parks Tau, joined other stakeholders and role-players to recognize the role of cities in the overall development of communities.

The implementation of the New Urban Agenda was the main focus of the World Cities Day, with the national urban policy, the Integrated Urban Development Framework (IUDF) as key framing element to its localisation in South Africa. The IUDF aims to guide the development of human settlements through an inclusive and resilient way. Its vision speaks to liveable, safe, efficient cities – socially integrated, economically inclusive and residents participate actively in urban life.

Building on the IUDF and its implementation plan, the Department of Human Settlements, the Department of Cooperative Governance, the South African Local Government Association and the South African Cities Network have drafted the South African Implementation Framework for the New Urban Agenda.

The World Cities Day provided a platform to present the draft of the Implementation Framework for the New Urban Agenda in South Africa and to dialogue with stakeholders across government and civil society to dialogue on how the New Urban Agenda can be localised. This consultative process aimed to support its finalization before the presentation of the final document to UN-Habitat and partners at the 9th World Urban Forum, to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in February 2018.

The main message from the speakers was to promote better planning by anticipating urban growth for future change and ensure that urbanisation remains a positive force for sustainable development. “Changing the outlook of our cities will require us to use the spaces creatively and also contribute to deep development”, said Deputy Minister Nel, while highlighting the need to design and manage the urban spaces in a way that makes the citizens feel safe.

“Going forward to address the requirements of the New Urban Agenda, South Africa is to create an Implementation Framework that ensures urbanization challenges and opportunities are tackled collectively,” said Councillor Gumede. “We look forward to gathering with our peers to see how we will take a collective approach, recognizing that the development of our urban spaces within a context of human settlements is linked to the economic and social development of the country as a whole.”

In her remarks, Ms. Musisi articulated the transformative commitments required to achieve sustainable urbanization and applauded the commitment and achievements of the government of the Republic of South Africa for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda.
“Even though lots of progress has been achieved, South Africa is still committed doing more and to develop a clear implementation plan for our urban agenda”, concluded the Deputy Minister Nel.


Dokup, a global digital platform for eHealth, medical services and advice, commemorated World Cities Day on 31 October 2017. Dokup took the opportunity to raise awareness on the importance of cities and the involvement of youth in sustainable urban development. The event was held in Casablanca. Please visit for further information.



The People In Need (PIN), a non-governmental organization in Cambodia will celebrate World Cities Day on 19 October 2017, in the city of in Phnom Penh. The event will be marked through the "City For All!" Conference, an annual event organised by People In Need (PIN) Cambodia to provide a platform for discussion on sustainable urban development in Cambodia. This year, over 30 speakers from across Asia will present four thematic sessions – Resilient City, Inclusive City, Clean City and Future City. For more information please email:


The World Bank (Global Platform for Sustainable Cities)will organize the 2nd GPSC Annual Meeting on World Cities Day, 31 October in New Delhi. Currently comprised of 27 cities across 11 pilot countries, the Global Platform for Sustainable Cities, or GPSC, supports cities in their efforts to adopt an integrated approach to urban planning and financing. Led by the World Bank and supported by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), in collaboration with development partners, the GPSC promotes sustainable development amidst rapid urbanization and works with practitioners and thought leaders from around the world in developing solutions for sustainable urban growth. At the annual forum, mayors and city leaders convene with experts from financial institutions, international organizations, UN agencies and the private sector, to share best practices in sustainable development planning and discuss policy options towards a common vision of urban sustainability. The offical opening of the GPSC Annual Meeting will take place in the morning of October 31. The theme of the 2017 forum – ‘Innovation & Smart Solutions for Urban Sustainability’- will be illustrated through the many scheduled events, including a Mayor's RoundTable, high-level panel discussions and a series of in-depth learning events. For more information please visit

Social Good Summit marked World Cities Day on the 31 October 2017 under the theme Innovative Governance, Open Cities. The aim wasto highlight the important role of urbanization as a source of global development & social inclusion. For more information, please visit



The Swedish Institute Network for Future Global Leaders (SINFGL) Local Network at Blekinge Institute of Technology has collaborated with PlanKan, the Planning Students’ Body, to organize World Cities Day Celebrations in Karlskrona City. The event, scheduled for 31 October 2017, will bring together different stakeholders of urban development from students, academia, civil society, private sector and the general public to celebrate the theme of World Cities Day 2017 "Innovative Governance, Open Cities". For more information please visit

United Kingdom

To celebrate UN World Cities Day the Sustainable Cities Global Research Priority of the University of Warwick is holding a half-day event to showcase cities research at Warwick. Besides offering the opportunity to hear more about the wide variety of research being undertaken in the cities space, this event will also offer the opportunity to advance university wide relationships and to learn more about research opportunities linked to cities. For more information please visit

Sound Diplomacy are hosting an open doors event at their office in Shoreditch to launch their guide to becoming a music city. Anyone is free to drop by and have a chat about music's place in our towns, cities and urban developments. The event will commemorate World Cities Day on 31 October 2017. For more information please visit

International Growth Centre will host a Twitter chat on the central role of innovative governance for urbanisation as a source of global development and social inclusion. As governments in many developing countries struggle to keep pace with the demands of rapidly urbanizing cities, questions about the governance of cities have magnified in significance. Local and municipal governments are expected to deliver an ever-expanding range of infrastructure and services to enhance both the livability and productivity of cities. In this context, innovation in managing the urbanisation process and in policies to support inclusive growth in cities is crucial. The event will endeavor to address these questions: Can different municipal structures prove more or less effective in managing rapid urban growth? What can national governments do to help facilitate effective urban governance? How can cities improve their accountability to citizens in delivering services and making large scale investments? And how can big data help policymakers address the needs of rapidly growing cities? The event will be to celebrate World Cities Day on 31 October 2017. Join researchers, policy makers and urban experts as they debate what are the biggest challenges associated with governance in fast growing cities today. Register your interest to join the Twitter chat here. You can also contribute to the discussion by using #citiesthatwork. For more information please visit



United States of America

Global Forum on Human Settlements will host the 12th Global Forum on Human Settlements & Sustainable Cities and Human Settlements Awards Ceremony (GFHS - XII) on 30-31 October at the UN headquarters in New York City. The event, organized to celebrate World Cities Day, will be centered on “Effectively Planning and Managing Urban Spatial Development to Implement 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and New Urban Agenda”. GFHS - XII will be jointly organized by the Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS), the Permanent Mission of the Gambia to the UN, the Permanent Observer Mission of the African Union to the UN (AU), the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment), the Universal Peace Federation (UPF), the World Association of Non-governmental Organizations (WANGO), the Better City Institute (BCI) and many more. The GFHS - XII will consist of closed consultation, opening ceremony, high-level dialogue, sub-forums, recommendations and summaries, exhibition, awards ceremony, field visits and studies. GFHS - XII will address and tackle the following issues:

  • Integrated, polycentric, and balanced territorial development policies, strategies and practices;
  • Safe, accessible, green and quality public spaces
  • Improve city environment and resilience through resource efficiency
  • International Green Model City Initiative
  • Low-carbon city and new energy development
  • Inclusive urban renewal
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Smart city
  • Characteristic town
  • Women and Children in the Rapidly Urbanizing World, and many more

For more information please visit

The National Democratic Institute will launch its' global Women Mayors' Network (WoMN) on the occasion of World Cities Day on 31 October 2017. The Women Mayors’ Network (WoMN) is a an international, nonpartisan peer network to support women who are running governments at the urban level and who are #LeadingDifferently. WoMN open to current or former women mayors of nationally significant urban centers. It will offer members a space for networking, and a platform for policy forums, innovation, cross-regional collaboration, and lesson learning. WoMN members will also have access to technical expertise that will enhance and deepen their effectiveness as executive officers. The WoMN will host a biennial summit where members can meet, connect and innovate. By harnessing the reach of its worldwide membership leading a rapidly urbanizing global population, the Network will be a global political force working to build democratic resilience through inclusive and accountable urban government.
The website that will be launched that day will be: