Message of the Chairman of The Board of Trustees

“Our Aim is to Foster a Culture of Living Together”

World Academy for Local Government and Democracy was founded in 1993. We take great pride in social values that we have fostered through activities and projects in the past 27 years. Since the date of its foundation, we, as WALD family, have been striving for empowering local governments, supporting democracy and developing a vision of sustainable cities.

Turkey has achieved considerable success on international levels in recent years. In addition to its social development, the country has become popular worldwide with its rich culture and civilization. Changes in local aspects have great importance in this worldwide recognition. We provide support to local governments through capacity and awareness building activities such as developing democratic local government movement at the national as well as global scales, adopting sustainable urban life, expanding initiative spheres, increasing authorities and resources, and regarding local governments as solution partners.

While the world is undergoing a swift globalization, localization tendencies are also being reinforced. As a principle of democracy, predominantly centralized administrations are evolving into more powerful local governments and permanent democracies. Local governments prioritize public participation, value modern urban planning, and favor equality and liberty. The advantages of development on the local scale are frequently emphasized in the Sustainable Development Goals, which recognize cities as the key element of creating safe, inclusive and sustainable niches.

There is a need for strong local governments that can create businesses through sustainable sources of income, prioritize social gender equality and empowerment of youth, promote access to basic services by preserving human dignity, build smart cities and circular urban economies, and employ technology usefully. WALD, day by day, improves its ability to make change and transformation, takes the needs of locals into account and establishes partnership between authorities from civil society, private sector, public institution and organizations in order to create opinion platforms. 

As we have done so far, we, as WALD family, will always strive to achieve local governments that prioritize public participation within the scope of pluralist democracy, place emphasis on modern urban planning, and favor equality and liberty.

Architect Dr. Kadir TOPBAŞ
WALD Chairman of the Board of Trustees