Friday 6 October 2023



Dubai, United Arab Emirates

The World Council on City Data joined global resilience leaders worldwide to participate in the United Nations Global Resilience Forum held in Dubai, as a guest of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Making Cities Resilient 2030, and the Dubai Resilience Hub. The Forum convened city mayors from across the globe, together with leaders of regional and national governments, and the private sector. The Forum addressed the widening gap between the increasing demand for more resilient city infrastructure and the limited capacity for cities to finance these infrastructure investments. The Forum delegates agreed as signatories to an impactful Call for Action entitled “Scaling Up Urban Resilience for a Changing Climate,” to be presented at COP 28 in Dubai later this year.

Described by Ms. Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, as a "very powerful and robust Call for Action," the document outlines the critical relationship between the COP process and financing disaster risk reduction activities, particularly focusing on infrastructure. The Call for Action advocates for data-driven resilience decision-making through the WCCD’s ISO 37120 Series, a global first by the WCCD. It emphasizes the importance of initiatives such as MCR2030, in which the WCCD is a core partner, to enhance local governments’ resilience toolkits. Additionally, it underscores the necessity for collaboration between public and private sectors to facilitate these critical steps for more resilient futures.

During her speeches in the opening and closing panel sessions, Dr. Patricia McCarney, the WCCD’s President and CEO, emphasized the importance of better connecting four critical stakeholders—global cities, the WCCD ISO data, UNDRR, and private sector—across the resilient cities ecosystem. She highlighted the linkage of globally standardized WCCD ISO data including the most current work at ISO in developing standardized data for Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) to the needs of cities worldwide, directing the trillions of dollars available to cities from the private sector for investment through debenture markets. In this context, Dr. McCarney also emphasized the opportunity to enhance resilience efforts to connect to UNDRR programming and in particular MCR2030 and the Global Education and Training Institute. These elements, along with the Call for Action, set the stage for this year's critical COP28 process.

The discussion was further enriched during the panel discussion moderated by Dr. McCarney, titled “Data-Driven Decision-Making for Resilient Cities: ESG Investment, Bonds and Financing Resilient Infrastructure.” The panelists, including Ms. Liza Ramos of Makati City, Mr. Abhilash Panda of the UNDRR, Dr. Hajar Saeed of Ajman Statistics Centre, and Mr. Darryl Carpenter, former Director at S&P Global Ratings, highlighted the imperative to harness data to support the growing activities of cities in the debenture market. They emphasized the need to demonstrate the impact of resilient infrastructure development financed through bonds to bridge the gap between the required critical infrastructure and the capital contribution needed to facilitate it. This public-private collaboration was also outlined during the panel session titled “Investment in Climate Resilience,” featuring the WCCD’s Director of City Certification and Data Applications, Ms. Justine Hamilton-Arvisais, as a panelist.

The WCCD anticipates the implementation of the critical guidance outlined in the Call for Action and remains committed to advancing the crucial conversation about supporting local governments to become more resilient and better prepared for mounting risks and the increased frequency of disaster. The WCCD extends an invitation to cities of all sizes to join its growing global network of data-driven municipalities.

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For more information, please contact: 
Dr. Patricia McCarney
President & CEO
World Council on City Data 


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