City Diplomacy

Do cities need foreign policies?

City Diplomacy investigates the capacity of cities to engage in international relations. If cities are now more connected than ever before on a global scale, local governments are not just spectators of this networked age. Cities are actively forging links across borders, taking part in setting the international agenda, and shifting the landscape of urban politics from local to increasingly global. City diplomacy is and must become a strategic activity for cities worldwide if they are to remain relevant in the new global order.

To get a more systematic look at the capacity of local governments around the world, the Lab, in collaboration with the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, is exploring city diplomacy strategies, structures, expertise, and possibilities in an increasingly ‘urban’ age.

Project team

  • Professor Michele Acuto
    Michele Acuto, Lab Director and Professor of Global Urban Politics
  • Kris Hartley
    Kris Hartley, Lab Fellow and A/Prof. in Public Policy at Education University of Hong Kong
  • Anna Kosovac
    Anna Kosovac, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in International Urban Politics

Project partners