The IOPD participates in the 2024 UCLG Retreat and Annual Campus

The IOPD participates in a new edition of this meeting to align its action plan with UCLG members and partners.

At the beginning of each year, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) holds its Retreat and Campus in Barcelona, the city that hosts the World Secretariat of this international organisation. The Retreat and Campus is an interactive exercise that brings together UCLG members and partners to maximize opportunities for exchange and promote prospective dialogues around the themes that will be addressed throughout the year. 



The theme of this year's Retreat was "Acting for the future of humanity: the power that unites us", which brought together over 300 members and partners. The IOPD participated in the Retreat to feed the conversation and steer the UCLG agenda around Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16: "Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies." In the midst of a context of multiple threats - the decline of citizen trust, the spread of false information or the lack of regulation of artificial intelligence - the IOPD, as part of the municipal movement, reinforces its mission to strengthen and protect participatory democracy by including communities, ensuring that their aspirations, needs and dreams escalate to and have a space on global agendas.


Specifically, on the second day, dedicated to the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments, our President, José Manuel Ribeiro, Mayor of Valongo, also invited participants to our 23rd Conference "Populist Threats: Building Democratic Resilience with Participatory Communities", which will be held in his city from 17-19 October 2024. "Our conference will contribute to SDG 16, on promoting peaceful and inclusive societies, by addressing key issues to navigate the political complexity of the coming decades," said our President.



On the third day, dedicated to UCLG's Factory of the Future, our Coordinator, Adrià Duarte, joined the "Marketplace" to encourage participants to apply for the 18th IOPD Award: "Best Practice in Citizen Participation." Our Coordinator presented the five new categories of this edition and explained the application process. Staff from local and regional governments, as well as their associations, clarified their doubts and gave some suggestions to improve the IOPD Award, for example, to disseminate more about the benefits of participating in this initiative. 



Finally, the fourth day was dedicated to the UCLG Facilities to define the policy areas and ensure that they are nurtured by the talent and capacity of the members and partners of the international organisation. On the Facility "Systems of Care", Yves Cabannes, Emeritus Professor of Urban Planning and Development at University College London and member of the jury of our Award, gave a preview of an upcoming IOPD study carried out in collaboration with the UCLG Research area to explore experiences of participatory budgeting to promote care. The experiences are based on our Award candidates, in addition to other cases proposed by Yves Cabannes. "Participatory budgeting facilitates the inclusion of all people by boosting care systems," said our academic partner.