16 May 2018

Talanoa and Beyond: Raising Ambition with Cities and Regions

Talanoa is a traditional word that originates in Fiji and across the Pacific and is used to reflect a process of sharing stories, building empathy and making decisions for the collective good. Talanoa involves sharing ideas, skills, and experiences through storytelling. [1]

Launched at COP23, the Talanoa Dialogue offers opportunities for non-party stakeholders to provide their ideas on how to address the global climate challenge while focusing on three questions: Where are we? Where do we want to go? How do we get there?

In preparation for the Talanoa Dialogue, NDC Partnership member countries and institutions,German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) and ICLEI, in collaboration with UN-Habitat, published Talanoa and Beyond: Raising Ambition with Cities and Regions. This joint policy paper examines and shares what governments can do to raise the ambition of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) through enhanced involvement of the subnational level, while answering the three guiding questions of the Talanoa Dialogue.

The paper demonstrates that each tier of government (national, regional, local) has a unique and potentially complementary role to play in delivering low emission and climate resilient development. This means that effective and coordinated multilevel action can help nations implement their NDCs, raise ambition, and embrace the collaborative governance that is needed to implement the global Sustainable Development Goals. It provides key arguments to national government for integrating subnational government in climate change policy, action and financing, and gives examples of where this has been achieved.

The publication also includes several helpful resources for all tiers of government as they seek to raise their climate ambition and accelerate implementation.

Building on the Talanoa Dialogue, the global development blog URBANET recently launched its Talanoa Dialogue series of articles, which will provide insights into further examples, approaches, and challenges for effective multilevel climate governance.

As stakeholders continue to engage in Talanoa, it remains apparent that collective action and open sharing and dialogue remain core components in solving the global climate challenge.


This blog was written by Felix Döhler, Governance and Human Rights Advisor, Policy Advisor for Urban Development, GIZ.


Download the paper Talanoa and Beyond: Raising Ambition with Cities and Regions here.

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