In 2016, in Ukraine it was developed the first urban development strategy in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals until 2030 (hereinafter - the SDGs). Such a Sustainable Development Strategy has appeared in the city of Oleksandria, Kirovohrad Region.
Thanks to the active position of its Mayor Stepan Tsapyuk and the city administration in this matter, the city is ahead not only of other settlements in Ukraine, but also the central government, which only in 2017 adopted the National Report "Sustainable Development Goals: Ukraine".
The strategy was developed by the specialists of the Academy of Public-Private Partnership with the active participation of the Strategic Committee for City Development and directly the local administration of Oleksandria.
The aim of the Strategy is to create a modern European city attractive for living and doing business, based on efficient use of available resources, existing competitive advantages of the city, preservation of the environment and human capital development, as well as introduction of innovations and best practices of sustainable development management.
In this Strategy, “a modern European city attractive for living and doing business” is not a declarative and common concept. The document clearly defines the indicators that will characterize the creation of such a city, and calculates the ratios to be achieved under these indicators in 2020 (intermediate targets) and in 2030. It is these indicators that will be used to assess the achievement of the set goal, and hence the success of the implementation of the Strategy by both the city administration and the society.
This fully corresponds to the approaches to the implementation of the UN Global Sustainable Development Strategy, namely: clarity in defining strategic development objectives, their measurability, as well as access to information and understanding of the strategy by society (local community) and the international community.
All indicators defined in the Strategy are clearly correlated with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and the ratios to be achieved are measured in accordance with international and national standards in this area.
The basis for the preparation of the Strategy was the “Tree of Sustainable Development Goals of the city” developed by the specialists of the Academy, the starting point of which was SDG 11 "Ensure openness, security, viability and environmental sustainability of cities and towns."
The formation of perspective directions of the city development in the context of achieving this and other related SDGs is carried out using the methods of general theory of strategic management, comparative quantitative analysis, expert and rating evaluation.
To determine the starting position of the city on the key indicators of the SDGs and calculate the ratios that can be achieved by the city in the case of systemic and technological activities in the implementation of the Strategy in 2020 and 2030, the developers of this document have conducted: rating assessment based on statistical socio-economic information and assessment based on the results of an expert survey of representatives of public authorities, business and civil society (65 persons).
A comprehensive analysis of the results of these two assessments made it possible to identify three strategic priorities for sustainable development of the city in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals:
- Decent work for all;
- Comfortable living conditions;
- Rational management.
Each of these strategic priorities contains certain areas of development in accordance with the SDGs. For each of these priorities, the targets to be achieved in 2020 and 2030 according to the SDG indicators have been identified, including those according to which the success of the Strategy will be assessed by the society.
According to international experience, any development strategy cannot be implemented in practice if it is not based on the creation / modernization of modern infrastructure (economic, social, managerial). In view of this, the Sustainable Development Strategy of the city contains a thorough analysis of the state and problems of urban infrastructure and investment projects, the implementation of which is currently being considered by both local authorities and local businesses. The investment projects proposed by the city (42) are considered from the point of their potential impact on achieving the goals of the Strategy; among them are identified those that should focus on in the first place.
The Strategy of Sustainable Development of the city provides for mechanisms that will allow to achieve the planned goals, and defines an Action Plan for its implementation.
The priority measures should be:
- creation of a Strategic Development Center in the city, responsible for the preparation and implementation of local infrastructure plans, monitoring the implementation of these plans and the Strategy, informing the city residents about the issues related to their implementation;
- development of the City Infrastructure Plan aimed at achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (first in the medium term (2017 - 2020), and then - in the long term) (2021 - 2030)).
The need to create a Strategic Development Center is supported by Mayor Stepan Tsapyuk. Directly at the meeting on the presentation and discussion of the Strategy, he instructed to prepare a draft order and consider the candidatures of specialists who will be part of this Center.
This Center should become a center of competence for strategic development of the city in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals and mechanisms for implementing this task, including public-private partnership. Its representatives must be trained both in Ukraine and abroad and master modern approaches to solving complex problems of implementing the Strategy and involving the territorial community in its implementation. A decision was also made on the need to promptly begin the formation of the City Infrastructure Plan.
The Sustainable Development Strategy of Oleksandria is innovative. It is the first example of adaptation of national strategic documents to the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 in Ukraine. In fact, on the example of the city of Oleksandria, it is planned to work out a methodology for building sustainable and smart cities in the current conditions in Ukraine; to move from "strategies - declarations" to "strategies of practical actions and results clear to society".
Orienting the Oleksandria Sustainable Development Strategy to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, among other things, will allow all of us to work in a single coordinate system with the international community and be understood by our partners and colleagues around the world who work hard to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals focused on the needs of the people, the planet and prosperity.