Cities are a driving force of the 21st century. Through bringing large numbers of people into close proximity, they spark economic growth, foster innovation, and generate prosperity. But they face the pressing challenges of creating a livable environment for their residents, enabling economic activity that benefits all citizens, and fostering urban development that is environmentally sustainable, equitable, and resilient to disruptive forces. Particularly urgent is the need to finance this development: To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, an estimated $3 trillion to $4 trillion is needed annually. In an increasingly urban world, cities play a pivotal role in closing this financial gap.
The publication includes three sections on: principles of municipal finance; designing financial products; and cross-cutting issues. The first section highlights: tools for raising local revenues; challenges local governments face such as insufficient and unreliable transfers from central government, poor tax collection and weak fiscal management; mechanisms on how to improve outdated governance systems, enhance revenues and build better local financial asset management systems; and fiscal decentralization as an important part of sustainable and autonomous municipal finance.
Edited by Marco Kamiya (UN-Habitat) and Le Yin-Zhang (University College London)
External leading contributors: Lars Andersson, Dominic Burbidge, Greg Clark, Doug Carr, Nic Cheeseman, Skye d’Almeida, Lourdes German, Pavel Kochanov, Leonardo Letelier, Tim Moonen, Armando Morales, Miquel Morell, Daniel Platz, Dmitry Pozhidaev, Yasuo Konishi, Devashree Saha, Yoel Siegel, Lawrence Walters, Rami AbdelKaf, Michael Lindfeld, Siraj Sait, Huascar Eguino, John Probyn, Joshua Gallo