Intersectoral collaboration is important for policy implementation. However, effective collaboration may be difficult to achieve because of poor internal drive to collaborate, disagreements on framing the problem, institutional constraints and poor leadership. This article examines how competitive campaigns stimulate intersectoral collaboration in the context of healthy urban planning. We examine the case of the Creating Hygienic City Campaign in Jingchang, China from 2006 to 2011, illustrating how the city resorted to intersectoral collaboration to achieve the multiple targets and thus improved public and environmental hygiene. The paper argues that a competitive campaign, when well-organized, can overcome some of the barriers to intersectoral collaboration by building a campaign organization team, legitimizing the leadership, and enhancing public awareness and involvement. The article also suggests that the campaign approach in its current form failed to involve local authorities in setting the targets and was unable to sustain certain efforts.