Mapa A Coruña global

Collective intelligence: the best international strategy

Recently the IGADI presented a visual initiative to complete the international strategy of the Council of A Coruña. The Global City map is a strategic instrument for tourist positioning, but above all a collective intelligence tool transferred to the international level.

How can this process be implemented? The theory of (new) urban diplomacy that I discovered in my PhD thesis can serve as a guide to this process:

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Diagram of the New Urban Diplomacy (NUD) – source: Espiñeira-Guirao, 2022.

The key element is the local political mandate, the “operational mission” that each Council has embedded in its DNA. Influenced by an external factor (international policies or Agendas) and by an internal factor (the “talent” of the city), the local mandate will be encouraged towards seizing international opportunities.

But what is this talent? And can it be put on a map?

In the paradigm of the new urban diplomacy, we will understand talent as the intellectual capacity, individual and collective, to propose and carry out the city’s projects in their international dimension.

The condition for this talent to work is to be coordinated in the most effective way possible. A strong international position requires an economy of scale where the efforts of each stakeholder add up. This is precisely the usefulness of the map: to harmonize global efforts from a practical, visual and flexible point of view.

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Global Map of A Coruña (2023) – source IGADI

Practical because thanks to the map there is no need to create a new participation structure or a long local coordination document. The visual effect of the map may be obvious; but it is worth emphasizing its impact on citizens and local actors (who make the adjective “global”) and, of course, the influence of this visualization at the national and international levels. Finally, the map is flexible, it can be modified according to the evolution of the city: a map can always be walked!