UN-Habitat is backing the Cities Coalition for Digital Rights, with more than 60 cities globally shaping a digital future that puts people first and helps bridge the social divide. Smart cities should serve the people and improve living conditions for all. While these are principles that governments are designated to uphold, they often lack the capacity to do so. National governments are overwhelmed by the complexity of digital policies. Municipalities rarely have the in-house skills to create people-focused smart city projects or to execute holistic impact assessments on the agreements they sign with private companies. By bringing its unique global urban perspective to the digital transition, the half day workshop will explore how t potentially highly disruptive technology is used effectively for sustainable urban development. UN-Habitat’s unique approach and knowledge of urban development can create new capabilities for local government to move the discussion about smart cities beyond technology and link it to the implementation of the urban dimension of the Sustainable Development Goals, specifically SDG 11 and the New Urban Agenda.