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United Nations Habitat Assembly

This version represents the conclusions of the discussions held on Monday 22 May 2023

United Nations Habitat Assembly of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme

United Nations Habitat Assembly of the

United Nations Human Settlements Programme Second session

Nairobi, 5-9 June, 2023.

Draft resolution - international guidelines on people-centered smart cities

The United Nations Habitat Assembly,

Recognizing the profound and dynamic impact digitalization and smart cities are having on human

settlements and human lives; both in positive ways by providing new ways to support [evidence￾based]{RUS reserve} sustainable urban development, [delivering urban services] {USA+}, providing job

opportunities, enhancing access to basic services and improving information sharing and collaboration

between various stakeholders including governments and urban residents; and in negative ways if not

managed well, by exacerbating existing inequalities [and accessibility barriers] {FRA+}, reducing

sustainability and compromising economic growth, as well as, [the right to privacy] {USA+ FRA-}{RUS

reserve} [the right to be free from arbitrary or unlawful interference with privacy] {USA+ FRA-} [in the

digital age] {GHA+ FRA+} ,

Noting the definition of smart city by United for Smart Sustainable Cities, the UN smart city platform co￾chaired by UN-Habitat, ITU and UNECE and supported by 14 other UN agencies, as follows : “an

innovative city that uses ICTs and other means to improve quality of life, efficiency of urban operation and

services, and competitiveness, while ensuring that it meets the needs of present and future generations with

respect to [human rights and]{ARG+, EGY-}economic, social, environmental [as well as] {CHL+, FRA-

}, cultural aspects [among others] {CHL+, FRA-}”,

Recalling General Assembly resolution 70/1 of 25 September 2015, entitled “Transforming our world: the

2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, in particular paragraph 15 which recognizes that the “spread

of information and communications technology and global interconnectedness has great potential to

accelerate human progress, to bridge the digital divide and to develop knowledge societies” ; further

recalling Sustainable Development Goal 11 to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient,

and sustainable, Ad ref 22 May 2023 12.26

Reaffirming [the] {USA+, FRA+} [t][T]argets {USA+, FRA+} [17.8 and] {NLD+} 17.6 [and 17.8]

{NLD+}{DZA+, USA+} [target] {USA+} of the Sustainable Development Goals in Agenda 2030 and [its]

{USA+} [their] {USA+} [will] {USA+, FRA+}[objectives] {USA+, FRA+} to “fully operationalize the

technology bank and science, technology and innovation capacity-building mechanism for least developed

countries by 2017 and enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and

communications technology” and “enhance North-South, South-South and triangular regional and

international cooperation on and access to science, technology and innovation and enhance knowledge

sharing on mutually agreed terms, including through improved coordination among existing mechanisms,

in particular at the United Nations level”; Further reaffirming the pledge set out in the 2030 Agenda for

Sustainable Development that no one will be left behind,

Recalling General Assembly Resolution 71/256 of 23 December 2016 entitled “New Urban Agenda” and

reaffirming its commitment in paragraph 66 to [“] {FRA+} adopting a smart-city approach that makes use

of opportunities from digitalization, clean energy and technologies, as well as innovative transport

technologies[”] {FRA+} and its commitment in paragraph 156 to promoting [“] {FRA+} the development

of national information and communications technology policies and e-government strategies, as well as

citizen-centric digital governance tools, tapping into technological innovations, including capacity

development programmes, in order to make information and communications technologies accessible to

the public, [including] {GHA+ NLD-} [in particular] {GHA+ NLD-} women and girls, children and youth,

persons with disabilities, older persons and persons in vulnerable situations, to enable them to develop and

exercise [civic responsibility,]{ARG+} [their human rights]{ARG+, EGY-} broadening participation and

fostering responsible governance, as well as increasing efficiency[”] {FRA+}, [in line with its

acknowledgement in paragraph 19] {PSE+ BRA+ DZA+}

Recalling the General Assembly resolution 77/211 of 15 December 2022 [on] {USA+} [entitled] {USA+}

“ Tthe rright to privacy in the digital age”, which “calls upon [all] {USA+} States to respect [human

rights]{ARG+, EGY-, USA reserve} and[, in particular,}{ARG+} protect the right to privacy, both online

and offline, including in the context of digital communications and new and emerging technologies”, [“]

{FRA+} according to which no one shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference of their privacy,

family, home or correspondence and the right to the protection of the law against such interference[”]

{FRA+}; which also calls on [all] {FRA+} States [“] {FRA+} to take measures on a national level to put

an end to violations of [the right to ] {USA+}privacy and to create the conditions to prevent such violations,

including by ensuring that relevant national legislation complies with [their obligations under]{ARG+}

international human rights law[”] and furthermore [“calls upon all] {FRA+} [recommends that] {FRA+}

States [to establish or] {FRA+} maintain [or establish] {FRA+} existing independent, effective, adequately

resourced and impartial judicial, administrative and/or parliamentary domestic oversight mechanisms

capable of ensuring transparency, as appropriate, and accountability for State surveillance of

communications, their interception and the collection of personal data,[“]{FRA+}] {RUS reserve}

Recalling the Human Rights Council Resolution [47/23] {RUS +, TZA+} {placeholder name of resolution

RUS} on new and emerging digital technologies and human rights, which recognizes the potential of digital

technologies to facilitate efforts to accelerate human progress, to promote and protect human rights and

[express]{USA+} fundamental freedoms, to bridge digital divides, to support rights of persons with

disabilities, [the advancement of] {USA+}[to advance] {USA+} gender equality and the empowerment of

all women and girls, and to ensure that no one is left behind in the achievement of the SDGs, {Placeholder

“ insertion of exact language of resolution}

[7.bis Noting the UN-Habitat flagship programme “People-Centered Smart Cities”, which seeks to make

urban digital transformation work for the benefits of all, driving sustainability, inclusivity, and prosperity

and the realization of human rights, including privacy, by empowering local communities, promoting

equitable access to technology, responsibly managing data and digital infrastructure, building trust by

securing digital assets, and building multi-stakeholder capacity, ] {USA+} {FRA suggest to move as last

preambular para}

Noting the UN Secretary-General’s Roadmap on Digital Cooperation in which the Secretary-General sets

out a global agenda on internet connectivity, digital inclusion, digital capacity building, digital human

rights, artificial intelligence and digital trust and security, Ad Ref 22 May 2023 12.52


1. [Urges] {CMR+} [Requests] {CMR+} the Executive Director [to further support] {CMR+} [and]

{CMR+} Member States [in promoting] {CMR+} [to promote] {CMR+} a smart cities approach

which is people-centred [and follows a human rights approach] {IND+ CMR+ NGA+ RUS+ EGY+

ZAF+ TZA+ ARG- USA- CRI- NLD- FRA- BRA- DEU- FIN-} in order to achieve the SDGs and

the New Urban Agenda, which is based on the following principles:

a. [[Ensuring] {TZA+, RUS+} [Promoting]{TZA+, RUS+} the [equitable] {RUS+} involvement

[and values] {USA+} of people, [including marginalized communities] {RUS+, NGA reserve}

[, including the urban poor and other vulnerable groups,] {USA+, RUS-} and ensuring digital

and new technologies help [reduce] {USA+} [in reducing] {USA+} spatial [, economic, social]

{USA+, DEU+, EGY-} and digital inequalities[, overcome economic and social development

challenges]{EGY+} and [respecting]{ARG+, EGY-} [protecting]{ARG+, EGY-} human

rights for]{CRI+, CHL+, IND reserve, RUS reserve, EGY reserve} [respect human

rights]{USA+} [inclusive cities]{USA+},

b. Ensuring that [smart city approaches and]{FRA+} urban digital infrastructures contribute to

reducing the environmental impact of cities[[, building resilience]{PHL+} and [to ensure]

{ARG reserve, FRA Delete} that digitalization itself does not contribute to increased

[greenhouse gas emissions] {DEU+} emissions and the consumption of natural

resources,]{RUS reserve}

c. Building the appropriate capacity and skills for people-centered smart cities, including by

promoting digital literacy, education and training national and local [and regional ]{Chair+}

[governments/]{FRA+, CRI+, USA+, NGA-} [government] {DZA+} [and other

local]{Chair+} [authorities] {DZA+, NGA+, FRA-} officials and technical staff in digital

transformation, [digital accessibility]{FRA+}, data, smart city planning and digital public

participation, among others,

d. [Ensuring] {TZA+, NGA-, } [Facilitating] {TZA+, NGA+, SWE+, IDN+, NLD-, MAR-}

[Promoting]{MAR+} appropriate multi-level digital governance to guide the development of

people-centered smart cities, including data governance, management and use, system and data

[interoperability]{NGA+, IND+, IDN-, SWE-, FRA-, CRI-} [standards]{NGA+, IND+, IDN-

}, the ethical considerations of technologies such as artificial intelligence, the privacy and[

human]{ARG+, EGY-} rights of individuals and communities and appropriate collaboration

frameworks between governments, the private sector, academia and civil society,

Alt1. d Multilevel digital governance and appropriate collaboration frameworks between

governments, private sector, academia and civil society {CMR+}

e. Creating economic opportunities [, as well as vibrant and [competitive]{IDN delete} [an

enabling]{IDN+} environment] {DEU+} through innovation and smart technologies,

including to reduce [socio-economic inequalities]{EGY reserve} and fostering cities’

[shared] {USA+}prosperity ;

[Alt 1.e Economic opportunities creation through innovation and smart technologies.]

{CMR+, EGY+, RUS+}

f. [Centering smart city activities on people’s needs by maximising community participation,

representation, transparency and control,

g. Safeguarding public trust by putting cyber security measures in place that protect data and

infrastructure, including trusted, secure and resilient digital infrastructure,]{USA+}

]{CMR reserve OP1a to e, to adapt principles language}

2. [Encourages] {CMR+} [Requests] {CMR+} the Executive Director [and] {CMR+} [to support] {CMR+,

NGA+} Member States [and members of United Nations specialized agencies] {PSE+} [to] {CMR+} [in]

{CMR+} [promote] {CMR+} [promoting] {CMR+} people-centered smart city approaches, [notably

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