Knowledge Articles, best practices, books & publications, case studies, legislation, research

Posted on Monday, September 5, 2016 - 12:09
Summary Cities are engines of economic growth and centers of economic activity, with the world's largest 600 cities accounting for 70% of global GDP growth in 2015-25. The urban landscape is in the midst of a transformation, with the focus of the urban world shifting east. Cities in emerging regions in Asia will become major hubs of economic activity, productivity, and innovation, while the... Read more
Posted on Monday, September 5, 2016 - 10:57
Abstract. There is an ongoing debate on whether the observed decadal variations in surface solar radiation, known as "dimming and brightening", are a global or just local phenomenon. We investigated this issue using a comprehensive set of long-term sunshine duration records from China, which experienced a rapid growth in urbanization during past decades. 172 pairs of urban and nearby rural... Read more
Posted on Monday, September 5, 2016 - 09:06
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs recently released its 2016 global food security report, titled "Growing Food for Growing Cities: Transforming Food Systems in an Urbanizing World." The report lays out recommendations for the United States to invest in policies, infrastructure, enterprises, trade capacity, and research to change the way agricultural supply chains function in developing... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 - 10:16
This report seeks to expand on our annual Sustainable Cities Index to focus solely on water and identify which city is harnessing its water assets for the greatest long term advantage. It is our hope that city leaders find this ranking to be a valuable tool in helping them to think of water as an opportunity and as a resource for economic development while also meeting the critical needs and... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 - 09:32
Significance More than 50% of people now live in urban areas. By 2050 this proportion will be 70%. Urbanization is associated with increased levels of mental illness, but it’s not yet clear why. Through a controlled experiment, we investigated whether nature experience would influence rumination (repetitive thought focused on negative aspects of the self), a known risk factor for mental illness... Read more
Posted on Monday, August 22, 2016 - 12:05
The demography of cities in the 21st century will be shaped, to a large extent, by migration. This paper argues that the rights-based approach to urban policy advocated in the preparatory work of Habitat III, the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development to be held in October 2016 in Quito, Ecuador, may not be conducive to this goal. The approach lacks a contextual and dynamic... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, July 20, 2016 - 19:18
On 1 January 2016, the world officially began implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development—the transformative plan of action based on 17 Sustainable Development Goals—to address urgent global challenges over the next 15 years. This agenda is a road map for people and the planet that will build on the success of the Millennium Development Goals and ensure sustainable social and... Read more
Posted on Tuesday, June 7, 2016 - 11:27
New Urban Agenda Zero draft’, released 6 May 2016 Zero draft (Spanish/unofficial) Zero draft (Portuguese/unofficial) Translations for each of these papers are available here Comments by member states and stakeholders on these papers are available here Issue Papers The first major output of the Habitat III process took place in May 2015, when agencies from across the United Nations and others... Read more
Posted on Thursday, May 19, 2016 - 11:24
From Habitat II to Habitat III: Twenty Years of Urban Development   The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) started in 1976 with the UN Conference on Human Settlements in Vancouver, Canada, at a time when the governments began seriously to perceive the cities under their jurisdictions as “emerging futures” in their own right. Opening the event, Canadian Prime Minister... Read more
Posted on Monday, May 9, 2016 - 14:23
Preamble For the first time in history, more than half of humanity lives in urban areas. By 2050, this proportion will reach nearly 70%, making urbanization one of the 21st century’s most transformative trends, intensifying its social, economic, political, cultural, and environmental challenges and opportunities. Since the first United Nations Conference on Human Settlements in Vancouver in 1976... Read more