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Building capacity for localizing the Millennium Development Goals [MDG7] at the urban and municipal levels in Latin America and the Caribbean

Background:

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), based on the Millennium Declaration adopted in September 2000, have been internationally accepted as a common global development framework with focus on the poor. Yet, there is a recurrent perception of MDGs as a ‘top-down’ process that has excluded local authorities and other local stakeholders’ involvement. It has been indicated that the lack of appropriate civil society participation is one of the reasons for insufficient awareness about the MDGs and, therefore, insufficient progress in achieving the MDGs targets. It is clear from experience that the achievement of the MDGs has to rely on localized action, particularly in the Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) region, where most local authorities have devolved competencies and are responsible to a large extent for the delivery of key social and economic services at local level.

This project aims at contributing to the institutional capacity of local governments in the LAC region to timely achieve the MDGs, and share their experiences through a network. The project includes a training process using training institutions, the technical support to selected cities interested in preparing a Local MDG Action Plan, and the operational support to a web site linked to cities network.

Objective:

To increase the knowledge and capacity of local authorities and stakeholders to develop, implement and assess urban and municipal policies and programmes, particularly in relation to social and economic interventions at the local level and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

Expected Accomplishments:

  • Increased levels of knowledge and awareness of how best to use the municipal mandate to formulate and implement local policies that directly contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

  • Improved organization within municipal sectoral and territorial management in order to adopt local policies that contribute directly to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, through operational documents, according to the institutional framework of each local authority. This accomplishment involves the formulation of local Millennium Development Goal profiles and action plans in selected cities across the region.

  • Establishment of a regional networking facility to exchange experiences, best practices and policies on the implementation of urban policies and programmes, particularly in relation to social and economic interventions and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, established and hosted by a regional municipal association.

Implementation Status:

During the second semester of 2010, representatives of the involved institutions delivered the seven Methodological Manuals and the Local Action Plans (with the support of municipal staff).

The MDG 7 Guide (also prepared) was used as a support for the training and distant learning courses. During the first semester of 2011 focus has been put on completing the country publications for wider dissemination.