At the forefront of the Urban Transitions Alliance network are engaged city practitioners committed to advance sustainability and social equity in their cities. These individuals are great sources of knowledge as they are exchanging good practices and hands-on solutions to pressing challenges.
“The Baltimore Office of Sustainability is weaving a new fabric to lead us to a different future, where we collectively create the conditions for each of us to heal ourselves, each other and the earth. Peer exchanges with cities enable us to share creative solutions to our issues. In our relationship with the Urban Transitions Alliance, we share practices, experiences and results that contribute to bringing our transformation.”
Anne Draddy, Sustainability Coordinator, City of Baltimore
“It is a huge task to make climate protection and adaptation to climate change fair. What impact does a local climate project have on the whole world? The international exchange shows that there are many measures that are being successfully worked on worldwide. Working together in a spirit of solidarity and learning from each other is an immeasurable opportunity that the Urban Transitions Alliance makes possible.”
Dirk von Bracht, Climate Protection Manager, City of Dortmund
“In Turku, we have long learned that inclusive, bottom-up approaches such as peer exchanges are a fruitful and powerful way to move forward together both locally and globally. Actually, The cornerstone of Turku’s approach to social inclusion – also stated in our Climate plan 2029 – is that everyone has the right to take part in building a climate-neutral Turku. This mandates us to collaborate on all fronts of the municipality and society.”
Liisa Lahti, Project Manager, Circular Turku, City of Turku
“Buffalo considers equity central to sustainability. As our city continues to build resilience to the climate emergency with nature-based solutions, we focus on doing so in ways that put people first through workforce development and thoughtful attention to vulnerable populations. We are proud to be a leader in the global Urban Transitions Alliance community where we can share our experiences on advancing sustainability through just transitions and to learn from the collective knowledge and diverse perspectives of our peer cities.”
Oluwole (OJ) McFoy, General Manager, Buffalo Sewer Authority
“By participating in many international projects and peer exchanges with municipal representatives from all over the world, Katowice is experiencing first hand the benefits of knowledge sharing. Each journey enables us to understand each other’s context, unpack different perspectives and learn good practices. Similarly, involving Katowice’s own citizens into our work will help us strengthen our current transition plans, especially Katowice’s Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (SECAP), a long-term strategy to transform our city into a modern, low-emission and ecologic center.”
Bogna Gwoździewic, Environment Department, City of Katowice
“Pittsburgh has learned lessons from its past, both in terms of the negative implications of structural inequality and the degradation caused by environmental harm. The issues of justice and climate are inextricably linked. You can see this in health outcomes from our research that the lack of access to economic opportunity and a clean environment disproportionately and negatively impact racial minorities and women. As we pivot, and co-design our future we must ensure that everyone can benefit from a just transition. We can learn from our past to help make a better future.”
Grant Ervin, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Pittsburgh
“Essen, like all cities, means home for many people. How can we prepare cities for the future? Food, health and safety are the basis for a livable and humane environment. This is what our cities around the world must offer, regardless of income, status or geographical location. The city must become an urban landscape for its inhabitants. Equity is truly a global need that we can only meet together. ICLEI and the Urban Transition Alliance provide a great platform for learning and collaboration.”
Sebastian Schlecht, Strategic Management, Department of Environment, Mobility and Sports, Green Capital of Europe, City of Essen
“Many European cities have gone through industrialization a long time ago, and have entered the stage of transition toward a sustainable future. On the other hand, Chinese cities only started to industrialize three decades ago, and the process is still on-going in many places. Through participating in networks like ICLEI and the Urban Transition Alliance, Chinese local governments are provided with opportunities to learn from experiences of cities in Germany and many other countries in the world.”
Dengli Ming, Chief of the Science, Technology and International Cooperation Division, Beijing Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau
“In Cincinnati, our sustainability and resilience efforts seek to build a better future. That means equity is at the center. Much of our work today focuses on the shift to renewable energy – for everyone. Our programs focus on delivering clean energy, reducing costs for families facing energy burden, and developing workforce opportunities in the green energy sector. We work frequently with other cities pursuing this transition, learning from each other about what is working and where we have roadblocks.”
Oliver Kroner, Sustainability Coordinator, City of Cincinnati
Meet our speakers
City of Baltimore
Lisa McNeilly, Director of Sustainability
The Urban Transitions Alliance presents an opportunity for industrial and former industrial cities across the world to become global leaders in sustainable urban development.
The Alliance provides the infrastructure and support cities need to identify common challenges, share knowledge, co-create solutions and forge strong working relationships with local government peers, experts from the research community and private sector solution providers.
The Urban Transitions Alliance is managed by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and funded by Stiftung Mercator. The Alliance Secretariat is hosted by ICLEI.
ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability
53113 Bonn, Germany