Cities generate 80 percent of global GDP and consume 75 percent of the world’s resources. As the world’s urban population grows, the key to a cleaner and more sustainable future lies in mitigating risks and maximizing opportunities for inclusive and equitable development of urban infrastructure, underpinned by smart technologies and innovative digital solutions.
IFC’s Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory works to mitigate social risks and maximize the positive opportunities associated with urban infrastructure and services in three ways. First, we help municipalities develop strategies and processes to enable free, easy, and open access to the city’s data. Second, we help municipalities and private companies design community engagement strategies on urban projects and foster coordination among government agencies and community leaders. And third, we raise public awareness on how communities can access data related to infrastructure projects and participate in the decision making associated with these projects. This multi-pronged approach enables equitable, inclusive, and enduring improvements that address the needs of local communities—and the municipality as a whole—while enhancing quality of life.
Involving communities in decisions on infrastructure developments gives them a sense of connection and a stake in the project’s future success. Such efforts can yield shared value and economic opportunity, especially for women and youth. Actions such as building broad, multi-stakeholder coalitions and engaging with the community on project design, construction, and operational planning can build social acceptance. Ultimately this can help reduce construction delays and minimize cost overruns.
of global GDP are generated by cities
of the world’s resources are consumed by cities
of global CO2 emissions are created by cities
IFC’s work with the Izmir involved developing a strategy for the city’s open data program. IFC brought in global experts to review Izmir’s data ecosystem and engaged with data users from across the private sector, academia, and civil society. The team also provided capacity building related to open data. This included peer-to-peer knowledge exchange with the city of Manchester, England, which had embarked on a similar journey and has set a goal to be a leading European digital city. The IFC engagement has resulted in the creation of a new and inclusive open data strategy and roadmap, with policy recommendations and a framework to measure progress. In early 2021, following this engagement, Izmir has launched the city’s open data portal and with the IFC team’s help, Izmir’s open data task force now has the skills and capacity to implement the new strategy.
Colombia’s capital is adding to its transport infrastructure by building a cable car system in an impoverished area. The city officials wanted to ensure that the local population welcomed this as a positive catalyst for other changes, including increased tourism. IFC’s Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory team conducted an assessment to identify the potential sustainability risks and opportunities from the social and economic perspective and recommended actions to mitigate the risks and maximize opportunities for local people. We also helped the city to consolidate consistent community engagement activities around the cable car into one proactive and communicable strategy.
IFC’s Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory team worked with the government of Peru to produce a series of guides to promote good governance practices for municipalities. These guides are designed to improve local investment, transparency, and participation. The guides cover four key areas:
The introduction of TransMiCable into the transit system in Bogota has reduced travel time from over 1 hour to 13 minutes
The introduction of TransMiCable into the transit system in Bogota has had a profound impact, reducing travel time from over 1 hour to 13 minutes. The lessons learned will be used in future community engagement efforts for large infrastructure projects in the city. IFC’s Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory team has produced a strategic set of recommendations to address sustainability risks for the cable car project, take advantage of development opportunities and manage expectations. We also made recommendations to improve the current set of instruments being used to engage with communities and enhance interinstitutional coordination.