Malmö, a once successful industrial city that fell on hard times has since reinvented itself as a dynamic knowledge centre built on cultural diversity, youth and sustainable development., Source: Freepik

The ICLEI World Congress 2021 – 2022: Sustainability. Together.

The ICLEI World Congress 2021 – 2022: Sustainability. Together.

The Malmö Summit will bring 100+ cities, towns and regions together to showcase leadership in sustainability, adaptation and equity

The ICLEI World Congress 2021 - 2022, hosted by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and the City of Malmö, Sweden, will conclude on 11-13 May with the Malmö Summit. It's an international three-day conference for local and regional governments, urban practitioners, researchers and stakeholders to exchange ideas, inspire one another with the best practices in local sustainable development and learn firsthand from the City of Malmö’s wealth of sustainability initiatives. The Malmö Summit will explore and highlight critical topics in sustainable urban development, reflect on the outcomes of the COP26, and set new goals for cities, towns and regions in response to the climate emergency.

Malmö, a once successful industrial city that fell on hard times has since reinvented itself as a dynamic knowledge centre built on cultural diversity, youth and sustainable development.

Through a pre-event researchers’ symposium, high-level plenaries, interactive mobile workshops, virtual sessions, and networking opportunities, the Malmö Summit is an action-oriented event that will ensure a space for cities, towns and regions to experience the power of working together toward their sustainability goals.

Local and regional governments and their partners from around the world are invited to join the Malmö Summit in showcasing, celebrating and exchanging their visions of a sustainable urban future. 

Registration information is available here.


The ICLEI World Congress 2021 – 2022: The Malmö Summit will have three days of core programming for participants, featuring strategic high-level dialogues building on themes explored in 2021, as well as exciting technical visits, in-depth workshops and multiple networking opportunities.

The rich and engaging in-person and online sessions will be divided into three overarching categories:

  • Strategies towards a climate-neutral future: These sessions will explore the efforts needed in our cities, towns and regions in order to move towards a climate-neutral future, specifically looking at technological approaches and fostering behaviour change within the community.
  • Strategies towards resilient and healthy communities in harmony with nature: These sessions will investigate cutting-edge discussions in building resilience capacity in our cities, towns, regions and communities, making them healthy homes both for people as well as for nature.
  • Strategies towards equitable and inclusive communities: These sessions will look at equitable, inclusive and whole-of-society approaches to local sustainable development, participatory approaches and stakeholder engagement, and prioritizing the interlink between human health and sustainable local development.

In order for cities, towns and regions to achieve these objectives, key enablers for action need to be leveraged. The Malmö Summit will give special attention to two of those enablers: Sustainable finance and Innovation.

Sustainable Finance: These sessions will focus on bringing all actors along the investment chain behind the SDGs to respond to the crisis in the short term and rebuild over the long term for a more resilient and sustainable future.

Innovation: These sessions will share new approaches for addressing urban sustainability; including highlighting areas the ICLEI Network are already applying. The sessions under this area will show that innovation is a process of trial, failure and success, looking at innovation through two lenses; innovation in sectors and Innovation in policy and governance approaches.


During the Research Symposium, two important reports and key outcomes from the Innovate4Cities 2021 Conference, will be launched and discussed, as new agendas for cities and climate change science.

First, an update to the Global Research Action Agenda on Cities and Climate Change Science will be released as Findings from Innovate4Cities 2021 and Update to the Global Research and Action Agenda.

Second, an updated City Research and Innovation Agenda (Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, GCoM), a response for city practice and city leadership to the updated GRAA agenda, will also be launched.

The Research Symposium will take place on 10 May at the World Maritime University (WMU).


To give the participants a unique opportunity to learn first-hand from the City of Malmö’s wealth of sustainability initiatives, thirteen Mobile Workshops will be organized. Participants will explore the innovative solutions and approaches that the City of Malmö has implemented to advance its own sustainable development.


The Malmö Commitment positions local and regional governments at the centre of the global response to today’s challenges, by encouraging sustainable approaches, innovation, adaptability, participation, and inclusiveness in policy-making to tackle the current climate emergency and by embedding social equity at the core of their local sustainable development. It gathers local and regional governments that commit to this urban transformation following a four-step process: identify the challenges; monitor social equity indicators; report the progress and enhance the effort taken through neighbouring communities.

On day two of the Malmö Summit, initial signees will be announced, and other cities or regions will be invited to join the Commitment.


TheMayor.EU is honoured to be a media partner of the Congress. Follow us for updates.



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