How can local and regional governments work as a global network?

UCLG Strategic Toolkit

This question has been the common theme during the first UCLG seminar and campus, which gathered together representatives of Committees, Sections and key partners. The ideas, capacities and, in particular, the energy of those present in Barcelona this week have been a driving force in all of the sessions. Over the course of the week, the joint priorities of the network were outlined little by little, culminating in the definition of the roadmap of our common agenda.

Thursday’s session was dedicated to the presentation of the narratives and communication strategies of UCLG’s main international institutions and partners, which stimulated a debate on how our organization should define its own messages and priorities.

In today’s interconnected society, there is a specific need to improve our ability to collaborate as a network. However, the question is, how? Creating a new networked culture, and defining joint actions for 2015 in this way, requires that we learn and work together. To achieve this, it will be essential to develop tools that make UCLG a strong and sustainable network.

It can be done, using adapted tools: UCLG Strategic Toolkit

"Knowledge is about remembering, and innovation is about forgetting". This statement, made by UCLG Secretary General, Josep Roig, during the Retreat, captures the spirit of innovation in which the first version of our Strategic Toolkit was presented. The aim of the Toolkit is to explain, in depth, the network’s Strategic Framework and how to put it into practice, ensuring that the UCLG members and partners who want to contribute to the Global Agenda of Local and Regional Governments can do so.

Inspiring us with new methodologies for working

The Strategic Toolkit was born as a result of previous participatory working sessions with members and partners. Leaving behind old and over-used methodologies, and with the intention to innovate our practices and adapt to a networked society, we have created this Strategic Toolkit following a long project of consultation and shared sessions.

“This StrategicToolkit aims to explain the Strategic Framework in more detail and put it into practice to support UCLG members and partners that wish to contribute to the agenda.”

           

The Strategic Toolkit is, in short, a guide for collaborative work, and raises the question of how can local governments work as a global network. The set of tools contained in the document will provide the UCLG network with guidelines to express and share the knowledge and experience of its members in an easy and didactic way. Gathering together and giving meaning to our experiences will also strengthen our relationships, and allow us to learn from other organizations that make use of this guide. Let’s also bear in mind that the Toolkit allows us to visualize shared ideas, principles and aspirations, and define the future agenda of local and regional governments together.

“We want to create a dynamic and active global action network of committed local leaders who work in partnership with one another and with other stakeholders to improve and implement the agenda of local governments over the next 10 years. We believe that this global action network only makes sense with a networked system of leadership, and we want you to be a leader of this network in your region and/or policy field.”

Does this sound too optimistic? UCLG is excited to begin this joint task, and to harness the power of our members to develop a strong and sustainable global network based on our achievements and through collaboration. We can make this happen! If we work together, we will increase the visibility and impact of the movement of local and regional leaders at all levels.