October 31: World Cities Day

Every year, October 31 is celebrated as the World Cities Day by the United Nations. The day promotes global urbanization, addresses challenges of urbanization, pushes for cooperation among countries for sustainable urban development. This year, the World Cities Day is celebrated under the following theme

Theme: Valuing Our Communities and Cities


The COVID-19 has reshaped urban life all over the world. The local communities play a key role in keeping people safe and maintaining economic activities.


The United Nations designated October 31 as the World Cities Day in 2013. The Sustainable Development Goal 11 formulates the ambition to make human settlements safe, inclusive, resilient and sustainable.

The United Nations launched the World Cities Report on the eve of World Cities Day celebrations.

Habitat III Conference

The United Nations Conference on Housing occurs in bi-decennial cycle. It was held in 1976, 1996 and 2016. The Habitat II was held in Istanbul. Habitat I was held in British Columbia, Canada. The conference integrated into the Vancouver Declaration on Human Settlements. It carried an action plan with 64 recommendations for National Action.

The New Urban Agenda was adopted at the Habitat III conference that was held in Ecuador in October 20, 2016. The Agenda was published in 30 different languages.

Characteristics of a resilient city

The city should anticipate impacts and be prepared for future shocks. It should encourage redundancy in its network. It should adapt to risks and accept current and future uncertainty. It should strive hard towards social inclusion.

Global Context

According to the United Nations, the cities occupy only 2% of the total land. However, they account to 70% of world GDP, 60% of global energy consumption, 70% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions, 70% of global waste.


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