Workshop on Voluntary Local Reviews for Regional Governments

23 February 2023, 10:00 to 11:30 (JST) / 22 February 2023, 15:00 to 16:30 (HST)

Following the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, several local governments showed their commitment to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the local level by undertaking a Voluntary Local Review (VLR). VLRs have emerged as a key process for engaging subnational levels of government in the ongoing global conversation on how to better implement and monitor SDG actions. However, while the number of cities presenting a VLR has grown annually, the number of VLRs authored by regional governments is generally lower - with notable exceptions, such as the State of Hawaii, US; the Basque Country, Spain; and the State of Yucatán, Mexico.

This workshop provided a forum to engage in open conversations between regional governments in the VLR movement. The target audience will include regional government officials who are interested in voluntary reviews. The workshop focused on providing practical information on the inner functioning of the VLR process conducted by regional governments. In the first part, representatives from Hawaii Green Growth and the County of Hawaii did a presentation on the VLR process of the State of Hawaii, highlighting practical steps, challenges, and lessons learned. In the second part, representatives from regional governments initiating their own VLR processes had the chance to ask questions, establishing an open conversation about the best ways to proceed in implementing SDG actions at the regional level and monitoring progress toward reaching those goals.

Guiding questions:
-    What was the main motivation for conducting a VLR in your region?
-    What governance arrangements were established to facilitate this process?
-    What were the main challenges found in conducting the VLR?
-    How did you plan to review and follow-up for SDG implementation? 
-    Are there any differences between VLRs at regional level and those at municipal level? (e.g. the focus, processes, targets, etc.)   What are they? 
-    What lessons did you learn from this experience that will be relevant to other regional governments conducting a VLR?

Event Details

23 February 2023, 10:00 to 11:30 (JST) / 22 February 2023, 15:00 to 16:30 (HST)


County of Hawaiʻi
Hawaiʻi Green Growth UN Local2030 Hub

Presentation Materials


Learning Section
10:00 - 10:05
Opening Remarks: Supporting SDG localisation through Voluntary Local Reviews
  Yatsuka Kataoka, Programme Director, City Taskforce, IGES  
Remarks by United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
  Omar Siddique, Head of Unit, Sustainable Urban Development at United Nations ESCAP  
Presentation by Hawai’i
  Celeste Connors, CEO, Hawaiʻi Green Growth UN Local2030 Hub  
Reflections by Hawaiʻi County Mayor
  Mitch Roth, Mayor, County of Hawaiʻi  

Recorded Video