Greening Surabaya: The City’s Role in Shaping Environmental Diplomacy

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4 Citations (Scopus)


In the last decade, Surabaya city has reinvented itself through a rapid greening development concept. The emergence of cities in diplomacy represents the multi-centric world rather than state-centric world in post-Westphalian diplomacy. By using Surabaya as a case study and examining how it overcomes environmental challenges, we will show how a city can play a crucial role in the realization of responsible development. We will focus on the mayor’s efforts to decentralize Surabaya by making the city’s diplomacy down-to-earth and people-oriented, especially in environmental-related issues. This overturns the idea that diplomacy is the reserve of diplomats and political elites, with little connection to the welfare of the people, especially those at the grassroots level. This article suggests that Surabaya, as a secondary city, has been successful in creating green living spaces and achieving sdg targets through active environmental diplomacy via multilateral engagement, bilateral partnership, and local community involvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-258
Number of pages23
JournalBandung: Journal of the Global South
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Surabaya
  • city diplomacy
  • environment


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