OECD Principles on Urban Policy


The OECD Principles on Urban Policy consolidate the lessons from the past 20+ years of work on cities to guide policymakers in building smart, sustainable and inclusive cities. The Implementation Toolkit helps use the Principles as a driver of policy reform.



What's the issue?

Shaping more resilient, sustainable and inclusive cities requires effective urban policy. The COVID-19 pandemic profoundly affected the health, lives and work of urban dwellers, magnifying many persistent urban challenges such as inequality and environmental issues in cities. Cities are entering another unprecedented global crisis whose magnitude still remains largely unknown. Russia’s large-scale aggression against Ukraine has thrown global recovery into doubt. In these times of radical uncertainty, it is more important than ever to leverage the transformative power of cities to keep recovery on track and build longer-term resilience against a myriad of complex, interlinked shocks. 


What can the OECD offer?


The OECD Principles on Urban Policy

Co-developed with a diverse range of stakeholders, the OECD Principles on Urban Policy guide policymakers through the application of more than 20 years of OECD work on urban policy. 

The Principles were welcomed by Mayors and Ministers during the 7th OECD Roundtable of Mayors and Ministers on 19 March 2019 in Athens, Greece. Mayors, Ministers and partner institutions committed to supporting the implementation of the Principles through the Athens Pledge.

>> Read the Athens Pledge by mayors and ministers

>> Read about 20 years of Urban Policy at the OECD

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>> Download the Principles on Urban Policy brochure in:









>> Download the 20 years of Urban Policy at the OECD brochure in:




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Discover the Toolkit

The Implementation Toolkit of the OECD Principles of Urban Policy

The Implementation Toolkit of the OECD Principles of Urban Policy aims to support cities, regions and countries in their efforts to use the Principles as a driver of policy reform in diverse urban policy contexts, through the:

  • Self-assessment framework: providing governments with a user-friendly four-step guide and a series of guiding questions and indicators to assess the state of play of their urban policy frameworks (“what”), operational mechanisms (“how”) as well as the results; and
  • Policy database: offering a selection of 60+ leading examples around the globe on how national and subnational governments are using the OECD Principles on Urban Policy on the ground to reshape their urban policy.



The OECD Principles on Urban Policy in Video



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