The United Nations' (UN) 2030 Agenda brings new governance challenges to municipal environmental planning, both in large urban centres and in metropolitan peripheries. The opportunities of the new framework of action proposed by the United Nations (UN) and its integrative, global, and transversal nature constitute advances from the previous models of municipal management based on the Local Agenda 21. This text provides evidence to apply quality criteria and validated instruments of participatory evaluation. These instruments have been built on the foundation of evaluative research, a scientific discipline that provides rigour and validity to those decisions adopted at a municipal level. A case study focused on a metropolitan area serves as a field of experimentation for this model of the modernization of environmental management structures at a local level. Details of the instruments, agents, priority decision areas, methodologies, participation processes, and quality criteria are provided, as well as an empirically validated model for participatory municipal management based on action research processes and strategic planning that favours a shared responsibility across all social groups in the decision-making process and in the development of continuous improvement activities that are committed to sustainability. Finally, a critical comparison of weaknesses and strengths is included in light of the evidence collected.
Keywords: 2030 Agenda; quality criteria; strategic planning.