The Capital of Peace is more than an idea. It is a vocation, a hallmark which Madrid wants to have associated with its name. It is also a concept that acts as an umbrella for all those initiatives which are going to have life and impetus breathed into them by those responsible for this city, both among its institutions and public.

The Capital of Peace is a strategy which needs to be increasingly consolidated in each one of the decisions which are made in this and other urban populations. If cities are the backdrop against which interpersonal violence takes on a range of forms, the population increases which are going to take shape in the first half of this century alone (calculations suggest that 70% of the population will be urban by 2050) call for measures and initiatives which cannot come solely from local governments, but which cannot be achieved without them, either. Furthermore, municipal heads, as the representatives most directly linked to the public, have much to contribute within the framework of their remit. And what is more, they want to.

The Forum is the first major initiative which, under that banner of Capital of Peace, has been spearheaded by the Madrid City Council. It was born of an alliance of city mayors, who are grateful for the speed with which other institutions, organisations and social initiative bodies have joined them in helping to get it underway. If this Forum has one ambition it is to be a space that is open to the contributions and participation of everyone. That speedy institutional and public response shows not only that action is called for, but that there is both a will and great enthusiasm to undertake it.

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