Connecting Local to Global: Networking Urban Youth Councils at WUF11

SERAC-Bangladesh joined the 11th session of the World Urban Forum (WUF11), held at the International Congress Center in Katowice, Poland, from 26 to 30 June 2022. Our executive Director, SM Shaikat has joined the 11th session of World Urban Forum 2022. The World Urban Forum is a non-legislative technical forum convened by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) since 2002. It is recognized as the foremost global arena for discussions in the field of sustainable urban development and human settlements. WUF11 will be organized jointly with the Government of Poland represented by the Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy and the City of Katowice.

The theme of WUF11 was ‘transforming Our Cities for a Better Urban Future’, to provide greater insights and clarity on the future of cities based on existing trends, challenges, and opportunities, as well as suggest ways cities can be better prepared to address future pandemics and a wide range of other shocks.


SERAC-Bangladesh led the Youth Zone sessions, in partnership with UN-Habitat and Fondation Botnar, and were joined by different session contributors, moderators, and speakers.

  • Localizing the SDGs, A Davos-style discussion on the role of youth in localizing the SDGs: The session at WUF11 presented a strategic opportunity for multi-stakeholder cooperation in the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular Goal 11 which is: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable. Participants will include local and national leaders, government officials, representatives of civil society, academia, the private sector, and grassroots organizations, as well as other policymakers and decision-makers from around the world.
  • Children and Youth Roundtable: Cities have become younger, most of the three billion people under the age of 25 live in urban areas, and it is estimated that 60% of the urban population will be under the age of 18 by 2030. This has happened in parallel with growing inequity, lack of access to basic services, and increased violence. Young people are an integral factor in sustaining peace. In recent years there has been a significant shift toward recognizing young people and their roles in the maintenance and promotion of international peace and security. This roundtable featured a special UN-Habitat initiative, Youth 2030 Cities, an urban governance initiative that seeks to build the capacity of youth leaders, and aims to promote the meaningful participation of young people towards sustainable urbanization.
  • Connecting Local to Global: Networking Urban Youth Councils: The session was to showcase the best practices of urban youth councils making a huge difference in achieving sustainable development goals, by being a part of the municipalities across the world. Being a shadow of the city governance mechanism, youth councils are playing a major role in civic engagement and achieving the New Urban Agenda. The session included stakeholders, UN agencies focused on youth works, and urban youth councils from all regions to share and build communication through this event.

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