Document Type

Lecture or Presentation

Publication Date

Summer 8-14-2020


Over the past few years, “smart cities” have led in leveraging technology to modernize their services and infrastructure— and have emerged on the global stage on key issues of international concern. In 2017, Hidalgo and Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, Mayor of Buenos Aires, spearheaded the Urban 20 (U20), a platform for major cities in G20 countries to bring their “urban perspective” to the G20 member states in tackling common problems, showcasing their innovative approaches leveraging emerging technologies at the local level to tackle global issues. In April 2018, mayors from 20 cities signed the U20’s first Joint Declaration; six months later, representatives from more than 30 cities convened for the U20’s inaugural summit in Buenos Aires. This summer, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti had a private audience the Pope Francis at the Vatican, where the two discussed climate change, poverty, youth, and immigration. There are over 200 local-global organizations impacting international relations and policy, largely because of the pace at which they are embracing technology and innovation.

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