Bogotá Care Blocks and gender equity, present at the World Government Summit

Bogotá Care Blocks present at the World Government summit Photo: Bogota Mayor's Office
The Secretary of Women's Affairs of Bogotá, Diana Rodriguez Franco, represents Colombian capital at the World Government Summit explaining how the Care Blocks and the city's gender focus policy work.

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The City Government of Bogotá has taken strides to address the care burden that disproportionately impacts women through its Care Blocks initiative, a worldwide benchmark for public policy and social innovation. They were selected by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Observatory for Public Sector Innovations (OPSI) as an exhibition project at the Edge of Government Innovation Experience, a space developed as part of the World Government Summit 2023.

In this space, the Secretary of Women's Affairs, Diana Rodríguez Franco, presents how the work done by Bogotá to think and organize the city around the care and needs of women, girls and boys, elderly people, and people with disabilities.

In the exhibition space and in the parallel sessions of the Summit, she will share how Bogotá, for the first time, created care blocks: are areas within the city that centralize several types of services and activities for women, including vocational and educational training to improve their marketable skills, psychological and legal aid, exercise and dance classes, bike, and swimming lessons, and free laundry service, while also providing care for their care-receivers -removing barriers to access imposed by care responsibilities.  

During the Summit, the Secretary will also exchange experiences on the new challenges of global governance, the role of women in the rebuilding of nations, and the gender focus as a policy of impact. Find more information about her participation in this tweet:

Likewise, Santiago Amador, member of the Public Innovation Lab of Bogota - iBO, will socialize the articulated management between the Secretariat for Women and iBO, which seeks to improve the data entry and registration experience for beneficiaries and service providers of the Care Blocks. This initiative will allow the construction of a more robust data system on the characteristics of the population that reaches the Care System services to generate more and better policies, programs, and services to meet their needs.

The Summit, whose theme is 'Shaping Future Governments', takes place from February 13th to 15th and brings together leaders, experts and decision-makers from around the world to share and contribute to the development of tools, policies, and models that will inspire the governments of the future on the path to creating more sustainable and equitable territories.

The agenda will focus on 6 main topics. The first is accelerating development and governance, an axis focused on empowering governments in creative and technological policies to design services that adapt to global societies. The second will address the future of societies and healthcare as a main aspect in the design of health systems worldwide.

The third axis is related to Exploring Frontiers, which aims to push the boundaries of knowledge through science and technology. The Summit will also address the themes of Economic Resilience and Connectivity Governance, Design of Global Cities and Sustainability, and Prioritization of Learning and Work.

Why Care Blocks are innovative?

  1. In a big city like Bogotá, the Care System’s main innovation is in its manner of operation: it simultaneously provides services for those who provide care and those who require care.
  2. Bogotá created a human-centered innovation in an age when many innovations tend to focus on apps and AI.
  3. Went from a city government that worked in silos, to one that operates in an integrated manner to deliver social services, optimizing the use of resources, data, and infrastructure.
  4. Introduced care as a city ordainment principle in the Master Urban Plan that rules the city for the next 15 years.
  5. Is offering an environmental solution to emissions based on social services and not exclusively on transportation and energy transitions.
  6. Care blocks promote a new, feminist urbanism: one that centers ‘smart’ city planning around the often-forgotten needs of women residents, recognizes the importance of unpaid care labor, and uses new technology and data methods to iterate its service design and implementation.

Bogota already has 15 Care Blocks! Learn more about them here: