Isfahan Municipality made transition to citizen diplomacy

"A joint meeting will be held between the University of Isfahan and the University of St. Petersburg in April next year to bring about fruitful scientific events between students and professors with the purpose of promoting the city," Iman Hojati the Director General of the Center for Communications and International Affairs of Isfahan Municipality said.

Iran (IMNA) - Referring to the development of international relations and urban diplomacy, Iman Hojati said, "Cities across the world are recognized as one of the main shapers of the foreign policy and urban diplomacy."

Explaining that one of the sub-points of public diplomacy is urban diplomacy, the Director General of the Center for Communications and International Affairs of Isfahan Municipality clarified, "Municipalities have followed the exchange of experiences approach on behalf of cities, which is commonly referred to as "sister city agreement" or membership in international networks. "

Hojati continued, "The cities around the world do not compete with each other in terms of providing services to first-class stakeholders (the citizens), but they vie to get a better position in the world and attract tourists; urban diplomacy can help cities in this regard and act as an effective leverage in attracting investors and using experiences."

He added, "When cities do not contend in providing services to their citizens, they can exchange experiences with each other; such exchanges will bring long-term economic returns and social values for municipalities as institutions that invest in important areas such as rail projects."

Saying that we can take advantage of other cities' potentials in the world to attract tourists and drive economic events, Hojati said, "Isfahan Municipality has made a transition from urban diplomacy to citizen diplomacy."

Emphasizing that municipalities, on behalf of cities, sign twin cities agreements or join the global network of cities, he clarified, "Instead of confining this concept to the municipality itself, the Municipality of Isfahan seeks to use a comprehensive notion called "citizens of the city", because there are citizens living in Isfahan who have effective international communication; on the other side, some Isfahani citizens are now living in sister cities or other cities across the world who have identified opportunities to make the international relations more productive."

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