Global comparative research on urban governance is confronted with a substantial data challenge. Regardless of the ever-increasing availability of information on institutional arrangements in individual cities, knowledge and methodologies to capture and compare the wide spectrum of different urban governance systems is limited. The global Urban Governance Survey – undertaken by LSE Cities in partnership with UN Habitat and UCLG (Decentralisation and Local Governance Committee), and supported by the MacArthur Foundation – addresses this data challenge and explores new ways of communicating and ‘mapping’ urban governance for public dissemination, comparative policy and research analysis.

This online platform presents the results of the survey. It also contains more in depth analysis of existing institutional arrangements and governance challenges faced by cities around the world. Please note that the information presented on this website is based on self reported data and reflects local government’s officials perceptions.

The Urban Governance Survey is also part of the larger LSE Cities New Urban Governance research and engagement project, co-funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation to examine multiple aspects of municipal planning, management, and governance.

If you would like to query or update any of the results of this survey, please send an email to