Reshaping Decentralised Development Co-operation

The Key Role of Cities and Regions for the 2030 Agenda

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Over the last decades, and in line with the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, cities and regions have played an important part in helping to implement global agendas at local level through their Decentralised Development Cooperation (DDC) activities. This report analyses the evolution of financial flows, emerging trends and innovative paradigms related to the development co-operation of local and regional governments, including but not limited to official development assistance extended by sub-national governments. It promotes a territorial approach to development co-operation and provides policy recommendations to maximise the effectiveness, benefits and outcomes of DDC at all levels, while acknowledging the diversity of approaches, definitions and concepts across OECD DAC countries active in DDC.




The adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015 by the United Nations provided an important opportunity to rethink how better development co-operation policies can deliver better lives for citizens. In particular, cities and regions from OECD countries, through their international development cooperation activities – namely decentralised development cooperation (DDC) – play an important role in localising the 2030 Development Agenda by supporting knowledge and good practices sharing with their peers. Their increasing role in this field has been strengthened by the Communications from the European Commission on Local authorities: actors for development (2008); The roots of democracy and sustainable development (2012); and on Empowering local authorities in partner countries for enhanced governance and more effective development outcomes (2013).


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