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The Rio Sustainable Cities Initiative recognizes that comprehensive sustainable urban development necessitates local and national cooperation. Holistic planning cannot be confined to local boundaries. This is particularly important as cities strive to achieve the urban sustainable development goal (SDG 11), to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

Launched by SDSN Brazil and GIZ, the Solution Initiative “Sustainable Development of Metropolitan Regions”, aims to work with key stakeholders across the Rio de Janeiro Metropolitan Area (RJMA) and other metropolitan regions throughout Brazil, to examine possible solutions for local implementation of the SDGs, through inclusive dialogue, establishing metropolitan cooperation structures, and supporting contextualized monitoring of the SDGs.

The goal is to translate the global SDGs in local action, clearly demonstrating the process of localizing the SDGs, aligning the monitoring and review framework to local structures, as well as systematizing local findings in a comparative framework.

The Solutions Initiative has helped to spark an important discussion in Brazil between different levels of government on how to achieve sustainable development. These discussions have explored metropolitan governance structures (both formal and informal) as a fundamental base for SDG implementation, and the localization of SDG monitoring in metropolitan regions, focusing on how to institutionalize the SDGs into existing planning frameworks, the role of civil society in monitoring, and the use of data and indices to monitor progress towards the SDGs.

Results of the Solutions Initiative are being recorded in a manual, being developed in partnership with Casa Fluminense, a local Rio-based NGO. The manual aims to use the Rio de Janeiro Metropolitan Area as a practical example to illustrate how the process of local SDG contextualization, data gathering, and monitoring can be systematized. The Solutions Initiative aims to serve as inspiration to other metropolitan regions throughout Latin America and the world facing similar problems, by disseminating lessons learned from the Brazilian context.

Other Solutions Initiatives

  • Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project

    The Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) is an SDSN Solution Initiative co-founded with the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI) to prepare national low-emission development pathways to 2050, consistent with limiting the rise in global temperatures to well below 2°C, as agreed in the Paris Agreement on climate change.

  • Agricultural Transformation Pathways initiative

    This SDSN Solution Initiative aims to provide support to countries in choosing realistic targets that are congruent with the new SDGs and developing technology and socio-economic roadmaps for meeting selected targets.

  • USA Sustainable Cities Initiative (USA-SCI)

    Building on ongoing municipal sustainable development planning efforts, the USA Sustainable Cities Initiative (USA-SCI) is supporting SDG achievement strategies in three pilot US cities: New York (New York), Baltimore (Maryland), and San Jose (California).

  • Reconciling Development Data

    The process of data reconciliation, which stitches together multiple related datasets, can increase the efficiency and achieve a level of specificity hitherto unavailable to most statistics offices.

  • The World in 2050

    The World in 2050 (TWI2050) is a global research initiative in support of a successful implementation of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda. The goal of TWI2050 is to provide the fact-based knowledge to support the policy process and implementation of the SDGs.

  • Virtual Open Schools

    The Virtual Open School project aims to identify and test a model for large-scale, online provision of quality secondary level education in rural areas in an economically sustainable way.