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Malmö Mayor Katrin Stjernfeldt Jammeh elected President of ICLEI


05 Jun 2024



New leadership board assumes roles, with Minna Arve, Mayor of Turku, Finland elected First Vice President; Marjorie Kauffmann, Secretary of State for Environment and Infrastructure, State of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil and Mohamed Sefiani, Mayor of Chefchaouen, Morocco voted in as Vice Presidents

Bonn, Germany (5 June 2024) – Members of the largest network of cities and regions committed to sustainability have elected their leadership for the 2024 – 2027 term. On World Environment Day, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) announced their slate of elected leaders for the next three years. 

The election comes as representatives from ICLEI are gathering in Bonn, Germany, to highlight the importance of local and regional government action and partnership at the annual Bonn Climate Talks, and just weeks ahead of ICLEI’s triennial World Congress, a gathering of over 1,000 urban leaders pushing for ambitious local sustainability action.

Katrin Stjernfeldt Jammeh, Mayor, City of Malmö, Sweden, was elected President. She said, “It is my great honour to serve as ICLEI President for the coming three years. As a network, we are united by our mutual ambition and determination to stem the tide of climate change, and address the crises of biodiversity loss and pollution. If we are to succeed, then more influence and greater funding must be given to the local level, and we must amplify our common voice and make sure that we are granted a seat at the decision-making tables. We also know that our environmental solutions must be inclusive and not worsen existing inequalities between people. Because if the transition is not affordable, it’s not sustainable.” Mayor Jammeh will also serve as the Chair of the Sustainable, Circular and Innovation Procurement Portfolio. She is the first leader from Scandinavia to hold the office of ICLEI President and the first female president since 2003.

Minna Arve, Mayor, City of Turku, Finland, was elected ICLEI First Vice-President. “Seven COPs have passed since the Paris Agreement, yet last year was the hottest on record. To keep our cities livable, we urgently need ambitious climate action. We must adopt circular, low-carbon economies, protect ecosystems, and build resilient cities. This requires funding, expertise, and mutual support, making platforms like ICLEI essential. I am eager to continue working within ICLEI’s leadership board as the first vice-president to drive these initiatives forward.” Mayor Arve is also an ICLEI Global Executive Committee Member, serving in the European Regional Seat and as the chair of the Circular Development Portfolio. 

Mohamed Sefiani, Mayor, City of Chefchaouen, Morocco was also elected Vice President. He said, “It is with great enthusiasm that I step into the role of Vice-President of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability. I am committed to advancing our mission of empowering local action for global sustainability. Together, we will drive innovative solutions, foster resilient communities, and create a sustainable future for all.” Mayor Sefiani is also serving as African Regional Seat on the ICLEI Global Executive Committee. 

Marjorie Kauffmann, Secretary of State for Environment and Infrastructure, State of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil was elected Vice President. Secretary Kauffmann is also serving on the ICLEI Global Executive Committee in the South American Regional Seat. Rio Grande do Sul was struck by unprecedented rainfall last month resulting in devastating flooding, displacing over 1.5 million people, causing numerous fatalities, and inflicting billions of dollars in damages. 

“We are thrilled to welcome a new wave of leadership at ICLEI with our newly elected President and Vice-Presidents. These leaders truly represent the vibrant and diverse spirit of our global network, coming from cities and regions at the forefront of sustainable urban development from the Global South and Global North. Their unique experiences, innovative vision, and inspiring leadership will accelerate our mission to support our network to create resilient, inclusive, and sustainable communities. In the face of the incredibly pressing challenges of climate change and urbanization, their leadership can be a beacon, guiding us toward transformative action and meaningful impact on a global scale,” said ICLEI Secretary General Gino Van Begin.

Mayor Jammeh has served as Mayor of Malmö since 2013 and is the first woman to hold that office.

An ICLEI Member since 1998, the City of Malmö is a climate-smart knowledge city, listed as the fourth most innovative in the world by OECD. Malmö is working actively for sustainability initiatives and is the first city in Sweden that has publicly announced the commitment to implement the UN SDGs.

The City of Malmö is a dynamic knowledge center built on cultural diversity, youth and sustainable development.  Under Mayor Jammeh’s leadership, the city has adopted a unique approach to sustainability, with environmental, financial and social effects all forming part of the equation. Several new climate-smart city districts have been developed, and old areas are being improved using new environmental technology. By 2030 the whole city of Malmö will be supplied with 100% renewable energy.

Mayor Jammeh has also put international support of other cities at the core of her priorities. When the City of Malmö hosted the triennial ICLEI World Congress in 2021-2022, Mayor Jammeh founded the pioneering Malmö Commitment, a pledge which encourages sustainable approaches, innovation, adaptability, participation, and inclusiveness in policy-making to tackle the current climate and nature emergencies, by embedding social equity at the core of their local sustainable development. 

When the UN introduced the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, Malmö was the first city in Sweden to turn these into guiding principles for local development work, and today they form the backbone of overall steering and management of the city’s entire organization. In 2022, the City was named a Making Cities Resilient 2030 Resilience Hub. Under Mayor Jammeh’s leadership, Malmö has also responded proactively to SDG 14, Life Below Water, becoming a Local Ocean Action Hub in 2017.

ICLEI governance members have a strong role in delivering on ICLEI’s mission, by galvanizing local and regional governments in calls to action, pioneering and piloting initiatives, building cross-institutional relationships and encouraging ICLEI Members to consistently work in the pursuit of sustainable development. ICLEI’s elected leadership serve as powerful advocates in the multilateral global sustainability arena, bringing the concerns, needs and challenges of local and subnational governments to the forefront, while pressing for increased sustainability ambition on global and national levels.

ICLEI has three main governance bodies, which are elected every three years. The Global Executive Committee represents ICLEI in front of international institutions and at global events and has the authority to make strategic decisions about operations and decide whether to expand work into new areas. ICLEI has nine Regional Executive Committees, which approves new initiatives and programs in the regions. The collected Regional Executive Committees form the ICLEI Council, which is the overarching decision-making and guiding body for ICLEI. All eligible Members can vote and stand for election. 

The full ICLEI Global Executive Committee and ICLEI Council can be found here: 

About ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability (known as “ICLEI”) is a global network working with more than 2500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. Active in 125+ countries, we influence sustainability policy and drive local action for low emission, nature-based, equitable, resilient and circular development. Our Members and team of experts work together through peer exchange, partnerships and capacity building to create systemic change for urban sustainability. For more information about ICLEI, please visit