What cities do best: Ideal roles for cities in climate action – webinar and related resources

9am, February 11th, 2016

In this webinar, held on 9th February 2016, Pete Erickson from the Stockholm Environment Institute presented findings from his recent study, co-authored with Derik Broekhoff, on What cities do best: Piecing together an efficient global climate governance.

Action by city governments is essential for achieving deep reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions. While many cities are already engaged in pioneering efforts to achieve such reductions, greater support from national governments could help realize urban mitigation potential more fully, quickly, and cost effectively. This webinar explores how, with greater policy coordination, cities could focus on roles and actions for which they are highly capable and best positioned.

Among its findings are that:

  • For approximately 20 percent of urban greenhouse gas abatement potential, the ideal role of cities is to be policy leaders and architects. The greatest opportunities are in the passenger transport sector, and include improved spatial planning, promotion of walking and bicycling, enhanced transit system development, and more efficient transportation management.
  • For another 40 percent of urban abatement potential, the ideal role for cities is to be critical implementers of nationally applied policies. Opportunities here are greatest in the residential and commercial buildings sectors.
  • For the remaining 40 percent of urban abatement, cities can be strategic partners, taking crucial independent actions to enhance the effectiveness of policies enacted at higher levels of government. For these diverse opportunities, cities could enhance national efforts through incentives, education, permitting, and infrastructure development.

Download the study here: What cities do best: Piecing together an efficient global climate governance

Download the slides here: What cities do best: Subnational integration & ideal roles for cities in climate action

Watch the webinar below:

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Factory worker in former mining region, Romania. Image credit: Flore de Préneuf/World Bank/Flickr

Institutions Involved

  • Spatial Informatics Group and the Stockholm Environment Institute


Scott A Muller, Pete Erikson and Derik Broekhoff
Links for Resource