The Global Cities Institute houses the University of Toronto’s Global City Indicators Facility (GCIF), as an anchor program. The Institute draws on the world’s best, standardized data created with 255 member cities of the GCIF spanning 82 countries. The GCIF set of indicators was the framework for ISO 37120, the first international standard on city metrics.
Intelligent analysis of the challenges facing fast-growing metropolises requires credible, standardized city level data and knowledge sharing among the world’s civic leaders. The Global Cities Institute convenes collaborative, cross-disciplinary research that builds on the GCIF metrics and integrates urban governance with design, technology and economics.
To approach the core questions confronting city transformations first requires accurate city level data, and then the capacity to calculate and visualize new, alternative and progressive forms of urbanization. The Global Cities Institute houses the University of Toronto’s Global City Indicators Facility (GCIF), as an anchor program. It will also house a new Laboratory for Model Cities and a Model Cities Theatre.
Cities occupy pivotal positions as strategic actors in building global sustainability – not only in economic and environmental terms, but also in political terms. The Global Cities Institute addresses a core research question for this century: What forms of governance are we envisioning to guide urban change into more sustainable futures? Cities are large economic and spatial formations with complex political-administrative jurisdictions that demand new forms of governance. Informed local politics and improved transparency together with reformed local governance structures ensure a sustainable global trajectory.
PLANNING & DESIGN
The GCI has been established to address critical questions of this century: How will our cities accommodate epic growth? What city forms best combine livability with density? How can we ensure increasing levels of mobility across expansive urban geographies? How can the form of cities and technological advancements improve the health of populations? How will we plan and design for critically needed infrastructure even in the poorest of nations? The Institute is positioned to harness the benefits of data-driven planning and decision-making for intelligent city development into the future.
Globally standardized data enables civic leaders to learn from each other globally and within relative peer groups. The Institute provides the basis for a suite of performance management tools. City metrics are the cornerstone of the Institute that enable city mayors, managers and other city leaders, to use standardized data as a crucial tool for benchmarking progress, to weigh infrastructure investments, undertake in-depth evaluations, and monitor city performance over time.
CONVENING A GLOBAL CONVERSATION ON CITIES
The Global Cities Institute convenes collaborative, cross-disciplinary research and a public discourse that builds on the GCIF metrics and bridges the fields of urban governance, planning and design, technology and economics. The Global Cities institute convenes a global conversation on cities, through a series of programming efforts, including an Annual Mayor’s Address, an Annual GCI Lecture and an on-going series of roundtables to generate a dialogue on Lessons from Other Places.