City Networks - Evaluating the Next Frontier of International Relations

March 08, 2017
Aaron Fishbone
1 min read
Photo credit: r.classen / Shutterstock, Inc.

Photo credit: r.classen / Shutterstock, Inc.

International relations, almost by definition, is not commonly associated with cities and towns. However, municipalities the world over — especially but not exclusively, bigger cities — regularly engage in their own international relations. Among other reasons, these municipal international relations have grown more important in terms of partnerships between cities, for cities promoting their unique identity abroad, and when looking to attract talent, investment, and jobs. This paper investigates offices of municipal international relations, primarily in Germany. The paper looks at what they do and how they are structured and compares them to some models in the United States. The goal is to provide a more clear understanding of the actual work being done to create and sustain a municipalities’ international relations, and provide communities that are looking to establish such an office, or revitalize their existing approach, some comparative analysis.