WHO European Healthy Cities Network Summit of Mayors

12–13 February 2018, Copenhagen, Denmark

The 2018 Summit of Mayors of the WHO European Healthy Cities Network will be the kick-off event of its 30th anniversary celebrations. The Summit will bring together political leaders from across the European Region and beyond. Participants will discuss, debate and shape the Network’s future political direction, align it with global and regional policy processes, and ensure that the vision and strategy are nationally relevant across the Network.

The Summit will culminate in a progressive and inspired political vision and strategy for the Network. This Copenhagen Consensus will affirm political commitment to the role of cities in creating a healthier and happier future, and will act as a political mandate for the Network going forward.

Cities are the future

Socially, culturally and politically, cities are more important than ever before. Within a complex world of multiple tiers of government, numerous sectors working towards similar goals, and a broadening range of stakeholders involved in the pursuit health and well-being, cities are uniquely placed to provide leadership.

Populations are also standing up and demanding greater accountability from their politicians to deliver a future that is sustainable for both people and the planet. Increasingly, global problems are being dealt with at the local level.

The WHO European Healthy Cities Network was launched in 1988 as a political, crosscutting and intersectoral initiative and movement to be implemented through direct collaboration between WHO and cities. It is now a principal political and strategic vehicle for promoting whole-of-government and whole-of-society approaches to improving health and well-being for all, and for reducing health inequalities throughout the WHO European Region.

The Network is comprised of cities that place health and well-being for all at the core of their mandates. It is a key vehicle for politicians to deliver on the increased demand for accountability at the local, regional, national and global levels. The Network is also a key partner in the implementation of global policy frameworks such as the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Health 2020.

Objectives

The Summit has 4 key objectives:

  • to update and agree on a political vision and strategy;
  • to identify how cities can respond to change in societies – culturally, socially, economically and environmentally;
  • to facilitate improved multilateral governance; and
  • to make a significant contribution to the global conversation around the future of cities in sustainable development and health and well-being for all.

Outcomes

It will work towards 4 key outcomes:

  • the adoption of a political vision and strategy defining what a city with health and well-being for all at its core looks like, and how it can contribute to improved health and well-being for all locally, nationally, regionally and globally;
  • the adoption of the Copenhagen Declaration on Healthier and Happier Cities for All;
  • agreement on joint concrete actions for cities to respond to multilevel governance challenges; and
  • the identification of links between the Network and global partners in order to spread the vision globally, and ensure alignment with global agendas such as the 2030 Agenda.