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Connecting Smart Sustainable Cities with the Sustainable Development Goals

9th ITU Green Standards Week in Valencia, Spain, 1-4 October 2019

Geneva, 15 August 2019

We gravitate towards cities in search of a greater scope of opportunity and better quality of life. In cities we communicate and collaborate with great intensity, building highly productive communities that make our cities unparalleled hubs of innovation.

This spirit of innovation will make a defining contribution to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Cities are powerful engines of economic growth, responsible for over 80 per cent of global economic output. But the advantages of urbanization are matched with significant sustainability challenges, with cities accounting for over 70 per cent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and 60-70 per cent of global energy consumption.

Innovation in the interests of urban sustainability will be in focus at the ninth edition of ITU Green Standards Week in Valencia, Spain, 1-4 October 2019.

Themed 'Connecting Smart Sustainable Cities with the Sustainable Development Goals', ITU Green Standards Week will bring together governments, city leaders, businesses and citizens to share their experiences in driving the behavioural change required to achieve smart city objectives.  

“The transition to smart sustainable cities has become a key policy point to national administrations worldwide," said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. “In our international standardization work, and with knowledge-sharing events like Green Standards Week, ITU offers a neutral platform to build the new partnerships necessary to accelerate progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals."

ITU Green Standards Week will a feature a leadership panel led by the Mayor of Valencia, Joan Ribó, discussing the importance of smart city innovation to the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda as well as the potential of frontier technologies such as Artificial Intelligence to transform city operations.

A forum on smart governance will discuss security, privacy and trust in the context of data-driven smart cities, in addition exploring how data marketplaces could lead to sustainable data sharing and insight of benefit to city leaders, businesses and citizens.

Sessions dedicated to Valencia's smart city journey will shine a spotlight on Valencia's innovations in city governance and the delivery of public services, paying close attention to these innovations' strategic, operational and technical enablers.

This sharing of lessons learnt and emerging best practices will continue in the fourth meeting of the United for Smart Sustainable Cities (U4SSC) initiative. Supported by 16 United Nations bodies, U4SSC promotes the adoption of international standards and the reporting of associated experiences, building a body knowledge of value to all smart city innovators.

ITU Green Standards Week will conclude with a full-day training session on the tools available to build smart sustainable cities, tools including international standards for smart cities and circular economy; measurement methodologies to assess cities' environmental impacts; and the U4SSC Key Performance Indicators for cities to measure the progress of their smart city initiatives.

The ninth edition of ITU Green Standards Week, hosted by the City of Valencia, is co-organized by ITU, Spain's Ministry of Economy and Business and Spain's Secretary of State for Digital Advancement, together with Agenda 2030 - Government of Spain; Avaesen; Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions (BRS); Bee Smart City; General Council of Professional Associations in Computing Engineering (CCII); Green Electronics Council; Inter-American Association of Telecommunication Enterprises (ASIET); IoT Forum; IoT Lab; Mandat International; Official College of Telecommunications Engineering (COIT); Organization for International Economic Relations (OiER); Solving the E-waste Problem (StEP) Initiative; Spanish Association for Standardization (UNE); Spanish Association of Telecommunication Engineers (AEIT); Spanish Network of Smart Cities (RECI); Synchronicity; United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE); United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC); United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat); United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO); United Nations University (UNU-EGOV); and World Resources Forum (WRF). The event is supported by the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade (ICEX).