Global Citizen Dialogue
Cities for All: Sustainable and Inclusive Cities

1st seminar of "Global Citizen Dialogue: Sustainable Cities, Inclusive Futures"
Title of the seminar on the screen

The first event of 2024's Global Citizen Dialogue series took place at the POSCO Center in Seoul on April 18th, 2024, under the theme “Cities for All: Sustainable and Inclusive Cities”. "Global Citizen Dialogue – Future by Us (GCD)" is a collaborative education project of Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom Korea office and the POSCO TJ Park Foundation designed to nurture active future leaders interested in seeking an answer to those questions. 

Starting in 2023, the GCD has been holding various programs centered around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This year in 2024, GCD aims to delve deeply into the “UN SGD Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities”, following last year’s focus on “SGD Goal 13: Climate Action”. This seminar, the first of three planned for this year, was streamed online on Zoom, allowing participants from 13 different countries to join. It focused on the dynamics of fostering inclusive and sustainable cities, aiming to envision the future we will live in and explore the efforts needed to realize the future we desire.

The event was commenced by the moderator Oh Min-jung, Professor at Korea National University of Education, who emphasized the significance of creating sustainable cities that include the diverse needs of their inhabitants.

Prof. Park

Prof. Park In-Kwon, Seoul National University Graduate School of Environmental Studies

Following this, Park In-Kwon, Professor at Seoul National University Graduate School of Environmental Studies, took the stage to talk about the profound impact of the climate crisis on communities. He explained the concept of sustainable cities, emphasizing the interconnectedness of environmental protection, economic growth, and equity as the three fundamental supporting pillars of a sustainable city. In his talk, he stressed out the importance of upholding these pillars in unison.

Transitioning to the topic of inclusive cities, Prof. Park underscored the principle of equity as the cornerstone of their construction. No individual should be discriminated based on their differences. Moreover, cities should be regarded as a common good accessible to all, enabling equal participation in social, economic and political opportunities.

At the end of his talk, Prof. Park introduced the Urban Inclusivity Indicator System (UIIS) as a tool for assessing a city´s inclusivity. Drawing on Seoul as an example he showed the city’s strides towards inclusivity while acknowledging areas requiring improvement.

A dynamic Q & A session followed, where participants from 13 different countries could ask questions about sustainable and inclusive cities and share their own experiences and perspectives with other participants.

In conclusion, the seminar served as a platform for insightful discussions and exchange of ideas on what sustainability and inclusivity in cities truly mean, why they are important, and how we can ensure them moving forward.

*Maja Adler is currently interning at the office of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom in Korea.

Watch the event (Youtube auto-translate sub available)

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