Introducing our new webinar series: Cities and Social Solutions

Moderated webinar series bringing together the inspiring voices of those who design and manage some of the world’s most impactful urban social policies.

Inequities of all kinds often find their most pronounced and visible expression in cities. In response, a growing number of municipal administrations are combining local participatory action with national and international knowledge exchange, thus becoming laboratories for impactful and sustainable social solutions.

This series, co-organized by City Diplomacy Lab and Columbia Global Centers | Paris, aims to bring together the representatives of cities that have implemented some of the most impactful and sustainable social actions.

Events will take place as webinars beginning in February 2024 and will cover the local challenges and solutions regarding social justice, gender, inclusion, and age. Each webinar will see the participation of representatives of three cities from different continents and will feature opening remarks by a representative from Columbia University.

This series celebrates the leadership of cities and provides inspiration for the thousands of cities and local governments around the world committed to shaping an equitable future for all urban residents.

Upcoming webinars

Cities and Social Solutions | Gender

March 14, 2024, 1:00 p.m. Louisville | 2:00 p.m. Buenos Aires | 5:00 p.m. Freetown | 6 p.m. Paris

Key topics: gender equity; gender-based discrimination; women, gender diverse and feminist leaders; equitable gender representation in local politics; care and well-being; feminist municipal movement

Partner: City Hub and Network for Gender Equity (CHANGE)

Cities represented: Buenos Aires (Argentina), Freetown (Sierra Leone), and Louisville (United States).


  • Carolina Barone, Undersecretary for Women, City of Buenos Aires
  • Manja Kargbo, Team Lead, Mayor’s Delivery Unit, City of Freetown
  • Gretchen Hunt, Director, Office for Women, Louisville Metro Government

Opening remarks by Lorenzo Kihlgren Grandi, City Diplomacy Lab Founding Director.

Moderation by Leslie Crosdale, CHANGE Co-Executive Director.

Cities and Social Solutions | Inclusion

April 18, 2024, 3 p.m. CET

Key topics: migrant and refugee reception and integration; accessibility of municipal services to migrants; integration of migrants into local political life; countering fake news; diversity; sanctuary cities

Partner: UNESCO International Coalition of Inclusive and Sustainable Cities − ICCAR

Cities represented: Barcelona (Spain), Montevideo (Uruguay), TBD.

Cities and Social Solutions | Age

May 16, 2024, 10 a.m. CET

Key topics: child rights at the local level; participation of older people in community life; healthy and active aging; integration of age-related equity goals into urban planning

Partner: WHO Global Network for Age-Friendly Cities and Communities

Cities represented: Saint-Denis (Réunion, France–TBC), Sharjah (United Arab Emirates–TBC), and Australian Municipality–TBD.

Past webinars

Cities and Social Solutions | Social Justice

February 15, 2024, 10:00 a.m. New York | 3:00 p.m. Leeds | 4:00 p.m. Paris | 5:00 p.m. Durban

Key topics: inclusive growth; housing, employment; education; access to amenities; support for families and young people; social security; safety.

Partner: Global Leeds

Cities represented: eThekwini (City of Durban, South Africa), Leeds (United Kingdom), and New Orleans (United States).


  • Roshini Bob, Project Executive, Community, and Emergency Services Cluster, eThekwini Municipality
  • Liz Jarmin, Head of Locality Partnerships, Leeds City Council
  • Kahlida Nicole Lloyd, Director, Office of Human Rights and Equity, City of New Orleans

Moderator: Lorenzo Kihlgren Grandi, Founding Director, City Diplomacy Lab