Mayors and leaders look to disruptive innovations and alternative infrastructure financing

Themed “Liveable and Sustainable Cities: Embracing the Future through Innovation and Collaboration,” the World Cities Summit Mayors Forum (WCSMF) 2018, held today, brought together 122 mayors and city leaders, and international organisations who participated actively at the Forum.

Mr Lawrence Wong, Minister for National Development and Second Minister for Finance, Singapore, and Chairman of the Forum, called on delegates to help cities flourish by leveraging on disruptive innovation, while not losing sight of the need for good urban governance and integrated planning and development to glean positive outcomes for their citizens. Highlighting the widening gap between cities’ infrastructure spending needs and investment, Minister Lawrence Wong also spoke of the need to rethink infrastructure financing strategies such as greater engagement with the private sector and other cities in a manner that is fair, integrated and well-structured.

The WCSMF 2018 is a key highlight at this year’s World Cities Summit (WCS), a biennial global platform for government and industry leaders to address liveable and sustainable city challenges, share integrated solutions, and forge high-level partnerships. Currently in its 9th edition, the WCSMF nurtures a global community of mayors and city leaders, to exchange ideas and best practices and explore solutions to address common challenges.

Discussions at the Forum centred on how mayors can embrace and capitalise on disruptive innovations, and the alternative models of financing for infrastructure projects. Mayors discussed the importance of being receptive to new technologies, their plans to build intelligent cities, and their experiences in obtaining private financing for public projects.

Also at WCSMF this year, the discussions from the World Cities Summit Young Leaders Symposiumwere summarised and presented. Held this morning, the Symposium with 88 young leaders from 38 cities generated active discussions on innovative solutions and governance. Mr Ted Chen, Co-Founder of Evercomm, presented the Young Leaders’ insights into urbanisation’s long-standing challenges. Challenges surfaced included the disruptive nature of innovation in the public, private and people sectors. They also discussed insights into urban management and effective governance.


WCS Mayors Forum 2019

Minister Lawrence Wong announced that next year’s WCSMF will be held in Medellin, Columbia. The city was awarded the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize in 2016 for overcoming difficulties through several stages of transformation to achieve remarkable economic prosperity and preserving its celebrated cultural and historic heritage concurrently. H.E. Federico Gutiérrez, Mayor of Medellin, extended a warm welcome to the mayors and city leaders, on behalf of the city and people of Medellin, to attend the 2019 Mayors Forum.