Cities Travel

Mr. Sven goes to the UN

Written by Sven Eberlein

I’m going to New York this week for the first round of ‘informal-informal‘ negotiations on the zero draft of the Rio+20 outcome document in the run-up to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio, June 20-22. What this means is that there will be a bunch of government and NGO stakeholders from all over the world trying to fine-tune the language of that document before the big shebang in Rio, and as a core adviser of the International Ecocity Framework & Standards (IEFS) initiative I’m invited to chime in on the parts of the draft that deal with cities. I’m not quite sure what to expect other than a lot of people in suits, but my mind is wide-open. Heh, I even bought a tie for the occasion, for the first time in my life. It’s a Jerry Garcia tie, at least, but it still wasn’t pretty watching me learn how to tie that thing. 😉

On a more tangible note, one of the projects we’re working on with the IEFS is an ecocitizen census being developed with the help of Ushahidi and Mozilla that will enable ecocitizens around the world to crowd source the collection of environment and city data in alliance with the United Nations strategies to create sustainable city spaces. It’s basically a tool to collect data from the bottom up rather than the top down and encourage city residents all over the world to have an active stake in moving their city toward becoming ecocities. Stay tuned!

Anyway, won’t be hanging around much for a week or so as I’ll be way too busy shaking important people’s hands. Kidding, I’m just a small fish in a big pond…

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Sven Eberlein

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