CIFAL Philippines, in partnership with UNITAR, University of the Philippines (UP), UP National Center for Transportation Studies (UP NCTS) and Diageo hosted the “Road Safety for Sustainable Cities: A Multi-Stakeholder Conference” in Quezon City, Philippines from November 9 to 10.
The conference gathered 151 representatives from national government offices, local government units, academic and research institutions, civil society groups, private transport-related companies, and members of the media to discuss issues in road safety and responsible road use.
In the conference’s inaugural ceremony, CIFAL Philippines Director Edna Co, UP President Danilo Concepcion, UNITAR Director Alex Mejia, and Diageo President for Greater China and Asia Sam Fischer gave messages of gratitude and support to the road safety campaign and initiatives.
“In an age of multilateralism, only a multi-stakeholder approach can promote road safety and common well-being. The multi-stakeholders approach offers diverse and innovative solutions to our road safety challenges,” said Co.
The conference also served as venue for the Philippines’ Department of Transportation (DOTr) to publicly discuss the Philippine Road Safety Action Plan, which will be formally launched within the year. In his keynote address, DOTr Assistant Secretary Arnold Fabillar said road safety features in the Philippines are inadequate compared to other Asian countries, highlighting the need to improve infrastructure, especially in terms of connectivity, mobility and safety.
Diverse and innovative voices for road safety
The multi-stakeholder conference was divided into six sessions, each giving diverse groups an opportunity to share best practices and challenges to improving road safety and mobility in the country and the region. The topics covered include road safety legislation and regulation, multi-stakeholder partnerships for road safety, safe and sustainable infrastructure for all road users, responsible and accountable road safety leadership, innovative interventions in road safety, and research directions in academia.
One of the key messages put forward during the event is the importance of public-private partnerships in expanding the reach and impact of individual road safety initiatives.
The two-day conference culminated in the expression of global commitments and signing of the symbolic pledge wall, led by Alex Mejia, Edna Co, and Diageo’s Leslie Chong. Participants were invited to join the pact to uphold responsible road use and reduce drink-driving.
“The limitation [of addressing road safety issues] should be expanded through research, applications of technology, and [looking at] how technology can actually help us solve issues of road safety, reduce fatalities, [and] reduce injuries. There are many other applications of technology, infrastructure. [But] at the end of the day, this is a behavioral issue,” remarked Mejia.
To view photos from the conference, click here.
To watch the recorded livestream videos of the conference sessions, click here.