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Daegu Becomes a Finalist in the “2021 Global Mayors Challenge”
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On June 16, 2021, the United States’ Bloomberg Philanthropies selected 50 cities around the world including Daegu as Champion Cities, representing the boldest urban innovations emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic.



Global Mayors Challenge Website



Daegu Metropolitan City competed in the “2021 Global Mayors Challenge” hosted by Bloomberg Philanthropies as one of the 631 cities from 99 countries, and became the first and only Korean city to become a finalist. For about four months from June to October, Daegu and 49 other finalist cities plan to refine their ideas with the assistance of Bloomberg's innovation experts to be selected as the final 15 grand prize winners.


The final 15 grand prize winning cities will receive USD 1 million (about KRW 1.1 billion) and multi-year technical assistance from Bloomberg Philanthropies to implement their ideas. In addition, Bloomberg Philanthropies will actively support the winning cities to scale and expand their ideas to other cities. Grand prize winners are expected to be chosen in early 2022.


"These 50 finalists are showing the world that in the face of the pandemic's enormous challenges, cities are rising to meet them with bold, innovative, and ambitious ideas," said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies and the 108th mayor of New York City. "By helping these cities test their ideas over the coming months, we will have a chance to identify cutting-edge policies and programs that can allow cities to rebuild in ways that make them stronger and healthier, and more equal and more just."


In this year’s challenge, Daegu Metropolitan City, Daegu Technopark Digital Convergence Center, and Dark Matter Labs* proposed a specific policy model that promotes urban “vitality” and creativity after COVID-19 through a project titled “Re-permissioning the City.” The project aims to create a smart system that is designed to involve citizen participation in permissioning the use of urban spaces, allowing work, life, production, consumption, and entertainment in the city can be combined.

  * A social movement organization located in the United Kingdom


In the future, Daegu, Bloomberg Philanthropies, and Daegu Technopark plan to further develop a smart permission system model that plays an active role in democratizing the use of urban space, allowing citizens to shape their own urban landscape and restore vitality in cities.


The 50 champion cities selected in this year’s challenge submitted ideas created in response to COVID-19 in the fields of economic recovery and inclusive growth, health and wellbeing, climate and environment, and good governance and equality. Finalists were determined by a selection committee comprised of Bloomberg Philanthropies board member Mellody Hobson, co-CEO and president of Ariel Investments, and David Miliband, president and CEO of International Rescue Committee.


"This is always an especially exciting phase of the Mayors Challenge, helping mayors push their innovations to even greater heights," said James Anderson, head of Government Innovation at Bloomberg Philanthropies. "While 15 cities will ultimately take home grand prizes, all 50 cities receive world class coaching and support to improve their ideas and their potential to improve lives." 


Daegu Mayor Kwon Young-jin ambitiously remarked, “Daegu is a city that is growing through its citizens’ innovations, and it is a city of great citizenry that is overcoming the COVID pandemic in the fastest and most wise manner. Based on such strengths, we will turn the new policy we are creating together with our citizens into a global standard to be implemented in all parts of the world.”


Bloomberg Philanthropies promotes a variety of investments and philanthropic activities to guarantee better and sustainable lives to as many people as possible in over 120 countries around the world. With the investments and donations made by Michael R. Bloomberg, Bloomberg Philanthropies strives to create lasting changes by focusing on five key areas: arts, education, environment, government innovation, and public health. In 2016 alone, Bloomberg Philanthropies invested USD 600 million (about KRW 670 billion).


The 2021 Global Mayors Challenge builds on the success of four previous Bloomberg Philanthropies Challenges in the U.S. (2013 and 2018), Europe (2014), and Latin America and the Caribbean (2016). For more information, visit and @BloombergCities on Twitter and Instagram.