Collaborate Groups, projects & programmes, discussions, Q&A

Posted on Monday, January 25, 2016 - 12:34
The typical modern Chinese city leaves a lot to be desired — and everybody seems to know it. Their streets tend to be extremely wide, cutting off one side from the other, but are still clogged with traffic that is unhindered by road rules. Their expansive sidewalks would be good for walking except for the fact that cars park and drive on them. Their populations are housed within 500×500 meter apartment complexes that are shut up behind high gates, inhibiting street life — socializing is best done at the nearest shopping mall. Their appearance is monotonous, it is a common complaint that China... Read more
Posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016 - 10:45
Selling food in Nairobi's informal settlements can provide cheap meals and create vital livelihoods, especially for women, but these providers are usually ignored and remain invisible. Food vendors play a key role in nourishing their fellow residents in informal settlements, offering ready access to fruit, vegetables, snacks, and cooked foods. But unlike food vendors in markets or downtown streets, vendors in informal settlements are often hidden and overlooked by policymakers. The Kenyan slum-dweller federation, Muungano wa Wanavijiji, has explored why vendors sell in informal settlements,... Read more
Posted on Tuesday, January 19, 2016 - 10:22
Do big cities have more in common with each other than with the rest of their own countries? Are there meaningful comparisons between cities such as New York, London and Shanghai, rather than between nation states? That is the suggestion of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Such mega-conurbations have bigger populations and economies than many individual countries - and the think tank argues that they face many similar challenges, whether it is in transport, housing, security, jobs, migration or education. In a report on global trends shaping education, the... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, December 9, 2015 - 19:02
City mayors from around the world have gathered in Paris at the Conference of Parties (COP21) to discuss green solutions, with many pledging to pursue a suite of sustainability initiatives to tackle climate change. Some of these discussions hold valuable lessons for smart Indian cities of the future. Today, unchecked and growing resource consumption and waste generation in Indian cities are commensurate with the populations they sustain. As economic growth triggers greater urbanisation, the cities of tomorrow need to break away from this traditional paradigm. New urban development models... Read more
Posted on Thursday, December 3, 2015 - 12:42
Many places being cited as examples of cities reborn - including London, New York, Los Angeles, Singapore, Sydney - owe their renaissance to growing populations of the foreign-born, writes  William Lacy Swing, Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM). It’s an inescapable truism that’s begun to sink in with leaders worldwide and which, very soon, will become obvious even to those most opposed to our current wave of human mobility. Could a million African, Asians and Middle Easterners really be bound for Europe this year? Certainly—and arguably numbers almost as... Read more
Posted on Thursday, December 3, 2015 - 10:34
Africa's urban population will double in 25 years, and it will have a slum prevalence level of 61% COMING OUT of the conversations at the Africities summit it is clear that the African reality requires a new way of thinking to do with the transformation and growth of its cities. These urban realities include a population that will double in 25 years, a slum prevalence level of 61% (higher than any other region in the world),  a labour force where 63% are in vulnerable employment, where congestion can equate to 2% of a country’s economy and where 400million more people will need water... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - 11:17
"Even poor Kenyans are starting to get developed-world diseases' TERESA MAGESA, who lives in Mukuru, a slum in the south of Nairobi, did not realise for years that she had type 2 diabetes. “I was always feeling that I was carrying a burden,” she says. But despite her frequent headaches and dizziness, diabetes, she thought, was a disease for “fat people”. Only in late middle age did she begin to learn that she needed to manage her blood sugar and eat a more balanced diet. Historically, non-infectious diseases such as diabetes, cancer or asthma have been more prevalent in the rich world than... Read more
Posted on Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 10:31
Imagine you live in a village in which, 40 years ago, everyone was able to work the land and live off the proceeds of their labour, but now climatic conditions and changes in land-use patterns have reduced agricultural yields. As you worry about food security, you hear that a new mine has opened in the next village and is hiring. What would you do? For many people the answer is obvious: I would go to the next village in search of work. The 2011 census noted continued high levels of urbanisation and urban expansion, with the greatest pressure being in Gauteng. Given this pressure, the National... Read more
Posted on Monday, September 14, 2015 - 11:42
What is the New Urban Agenda? The New Urban Agenda will be the outcome document agreed upon at the Habitat III cities conference in October 2016. In turn, it will guide the efforts on cities of a wide range of actors — nation states, city and regional leaders, international development funders, United Nations programmes and civil society — for the next 20 years. Inevitably, this agenda will also lay the groundwork for policies and approaches that will extend, and impact, far into the future.UN-Habitat released an initial vision document on the New Urban Agenda and Habitat III in 2013. Who... Read more
Posted on Wednesday, February 11, 2015 - 10:50
Around the world, the race is on to slash greenhouse gas emissions and halt global climate change before it causes devastating — and maybe permanent — consequences for the planet. In December, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change met in Lima, Peru to begin drafting an international agreement to cut emissions and begin the process of halting climate change before it's too late. But too late for what, exactly? In its latest climate change report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned of certain "irreversible" impacts of climate change, which were likely to... Read more