What is it?

Sister Cities International (SCI) is a national initiative begun by Dwight D. Eisenhower shortly after World War II, to develop economic, cultural and technical exchanges between US cities, counties, and states with corresponding communities worldwide. The goal of the Sister Cities program is to involve people and organized groups at all levels of society, establishing productive, people-to-people relationships through global community partnerships and volunteer action.

Today, the SCI represents 1,200 US cities, counties and states and their 2,100 partners in 125 countries worldwide. As international cooperation gains importance, city-to-city programs continue to play a significant role in overall global development and cultural understanding.


A World of Opportunities

The City of San Antonio enjoys active and productive Sister City relationships with eleven cities worldwide. Sister Cities offer unique opportunities for diverse and exciting exchanges with residents in foreign communities. 

These exchanges include:

  • Arts, Education, and Cultural Exchange
  • Economic and Business Development
  • Sports and Youth Leadership
  • Health and Research
  • Municipal Training and Community Problem-Solving
  • Technology Exchange and Training



How have the city and its citizens benefited from our Sister City Relationships?

Our model has brought a cultural enrichment to our diverse community while paving the way for significant economic development. Exchange sponsorships have been a community-wide effort in area schools, ethnic organizations, corporations and citizen groups.   Many of these relationships have initiated by these local organizations and have sponsored programs along with their counterparts in the corresponding Sister City.

Below are select news articles and stories that have been written about the benefits of Sister City relationships:


"What do Sister Cities have to offer San Antonio?" Jan Ross Piedad, TPR: The Source (Radio discussion), May 29, 2018

U.S., Mexico Mayors: Cities 'pivotal' in Global Affairs RocĂ­o Guenther, The Rivard Report February 17, 2018

A look at San Antonio's Sister and Friendship Cities Sergio Chapa, San Antonio Business Journal, June 14, 2016

How sister city partnerships can play a new role in a global economy Jonathan Ballentine, Cities Today, April 2014

San Antonio Sister Cities
Friendship Cities