City-region cooperation and urban-rural interaction build the conditions necessary to advance sustainability on the local, regional and sub-national level. Public transport, local and regional energy generation, resource flows, food systems, productive city-regions and urban planning can often most successfully be approached within
a wider functional area.
Some of ICLEI's goals can be achieved by approaching the issues at a regional scale, which allows for effective implementation of sustainable practices.
Multi-level governance is an organized and responsible mechanism that allows governments of different levels to execute their diverse responsibilities in a shared direction. Such coordination, as well as the vertical integration of policy implementation, is vital for achieving sustainability goals.