Fishbowl Conversation

How to Increase Financing for the SDGs at the Local Level Through United Nations Action?

Tuesday, October 3, 2023 From 13:30 to 15:00 (CET) Centre International de Conférences Genève - Room F
Climate & Energy Innovative Finance Social

UN-Habitat and UN Regional Economic Commissions, together with the Geneva Cities Hub put spotlight on opportunities for SDG-aligned investments directly in cities. The event will include mayors, financial actors, UN agencies to discuss sustainable financing for economic and social recovery projects. Discussions are followed by matchmaking between cities and investors.


Kanop Ketchart

Mayor - City of Nakhon Si Thammarat

Dr. Ketchart graduated from Chulalongkorn University with a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering. He earned the Degree of Master and Doctor of Engineering in Civil Engineering from the University of Colorado in the United States. Dr. Ketchart is an engineer by training, and has served as lecturer and a thesis committee in the Faculty of Engineering of many universities. He had also been an academic committee of the Geotechnical Engineering Institute of Thailand.

Shipra Narang Suri

Chief of Urban Practices Branch - UN-Habitat

Shipra Narang Suri is Chief of Urban Practices Branch of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme. She leads several major areas of UN-Habitat’s work such as national urban policies; legislation and governance; urban planning and design; urban economy and finance; urban basic services; safer cities; human rights and social inclusion. She is also the senior advisor within UN-Habitat for SDG Localization, local governments and their networks and is one of the recognised leaders of the United Nations, in this space. She oversees the Local2030 Secretariat to advance the SDGs and make them a reality at the local level. Dr. Suri is the former co-Chair of the World Urban Campaign, the former Vice-President of the General Assembly of Partners, and the former Vice-President of the International Society of City and Regional Planners (ISOCARP). She has worked with the United Nations (UN-HABITAT, UNDP, and UNESCO) as well as international NGOs and private sector organisations, for over two decades. She has worked across Asia, Africa, South Eastern Europe and the Middle-East.

Dan Grandage

Head of Sustainable Investing - abrdn

Dan Grandage is Head of Sustainable Investing at abrdn. He supports abrdn’s global investments business to protect and enhance investment performance through integrating ESG and sustainability in all elements of the investment process via the creation and oversight of standards and market leading frameworks. Mr. Grandage represents abrdn on the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) Standards Committee, plus a number of Investment Association sustainable finance working groups. He is also a board member of the UK Better Building Partnership. Mr. Grandage joined abrdn in 2013 from WSP Group where he had responsibility for the Sustainable Real Estate team delivering practical sustainability solutions for investors. Prior to that, he worked for RPS Consultants with a focus on the environmental management of corporate mergers and acquisitions. Mr. Grandage graduated with a BSc in Environmental Geology from Sheffield University, and holds an MSc from Manchester University in Urban Geoscience.

Nelson Legacion

Mayor - City of Naga

Nelson Legacion is the ninth Local Chief Executive of the City of Naga, Camarines Sur in the Bicol Region, Philippines. His leadership directions focus on making Naga a self-reliant and caring city. Mr. Legacion’s career as a public servant began when he was appointed as City Legal Officer. He successfully prosecuted expropriation cases that resulted in the distribution of residential lots to Urban Poor beneficiaries. His most important legal victory is when he successfully represented and saved the city from an ejectment case, which, if lost, could have cost hundreds of millions of pesos to the Nagueňos as payment for rental payments alone or, worst, could have resulted to the loss of the city government’s edifice and other government agencies’ offices and, subsequently, the crippling of their functions. For his accomplishments and love for Naga, Mr. Legacion was elected by the Nagueňos for two terms in the city council (2007-2010 & 2010-2013). As Councilor, he brought his life experience in the Sangguniang Panlungsod and pushed for legislation that helped uplift the socio-economic status of the destitute and underprivileged. Proving himself as an excellent legislator with a heart for the Naguenos, especially the underprivileged, he was chosen by the people to be the city’s vice mayor.

Dmitry Mariyasin

Deputy Executive Secretary - UNECE

Dmitry Mariyasin is Deputy Executive Secretary of the UNECE. Earlier he was Resident Representative of UNDP in Armenia, and Regional Partnership Advisor and Team Leader in UNDP’s Bureau for External Relations and Advocacy covering Europe and CIS region. Mr. Mariyasin worked in the UNDP Regional Support Center in Bratislava, the Regional Bureau for Europe and the CIS in New York; and the UNDP Country Office in Moscow. He holds a PHD in Economics from Moscow State University, a Masters in Public Administration degree from New York University, as well as a degree in public administration and one in international economics.


Diego Aulestia Valencia

Head of the Human Settlements Unit of ECLAC/CEPAL - CEPAL

Diego Aulestia Valencia is Head of the Human Settlements Unit of ECLAC/CEPAL, the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean. Between 2017-2020 he was the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Ecuador to the WTO and other economic organizations based in Geneva. Former Minister of International Trade (2015-2016); Urban Development and Housing (2013- 2015) and Executive President of Ecuador’s Development Bank, Ambassador Aulestia also carries an extensive experience in public and development economics. As overseas duties he was appointed Ambassador of Ecuador in Portugal (2012-2013) and Representative for trade affairs to Europe (2013).

Curt Garrigan

Chief of the Sustainable Urban Development Section for the Environment and Development Division of UN ESCAP - UNESCAP

Mr. Curt Garrigan is Chief of the Sustainable Urban Development Section for the Environment and Development Division of UN ESCAP. Before joining UN ESCAP, Mr. Garrigan served as Cities and Buildings Programme Manager for UN Environment based in Paris, France. Prior to UN Environment, Mr. Garrigan served more than 20 years in many operational and management roles for the Metropolitan Government of Nashville, Tennessee USA including as Deputy Mayor.

Yousef Al Shawarbeh

Mayor of Amman - Amman city

Yousef Al Shawarbeh is Mayor of Amman, having previously served as Deputy Mayor. Previously he was the Chairman of Amman Municipal Committee and Chairman of Addustour Newspaper’s Board of Director. He served as Minister of Political Development and Parliamentary Affairs. Dr. Yousef Al Shawarbeh has held various positions on local committees, including the Investment Committee of Greater Amman Municipality; the Local Organizing Committee of FIFA’s U-17 Women’s World Cup 2016; the Decentralization Law Formulation Committee; and the Human Rights National Plan Formulation Committee. Al Shawarbeh holds a PhD in law from Sudan’s Al-Neelain University and a Bachelor degree from Jordan’s Al-Ahliyya Amman University.

Sukaina Al-Nasrawi

Lead of Sustainable Urban Development - UNESCWA

Dr. Sukaina Al-Nasrawi leads the sustainable urban development portfolio at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (UNESCWA) including projects on urban resilience, SDGs localization, Voluntary Local Reviews, and the New Urban Agenda in the Arab region. She is experienced in technology for development, statistical analysis, and gender equality. Dr. Al-Nasrawi has a distinguished record of publications. She received research awards and the United Nations Award for advancing Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. She holds a PhD in Information Technology for Development focused on Smart Sustainable Cities.

Davis Mwamfupe

Mayor of Dodoma - Dodoma city

Davis Mwamfupe is the mayor of Dodoma city in the United Republic of Tanzania. He holds a Ph.D. degree in urban studies from the University of Glasgow, Scotland. Prior to this position, he lectured in various universities in Tanzania focusing on urbanization and population studies. His vision is to lead Dodoma into an inclusive and climate resilient city. He is a key player in pursuing nature-based solutions to address environmental challenges in the city. He is also passionately pursuing the ‘Smart Dodoma’ mission.