Around 20,000 urbanists are poised to gather in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, for the ninth session of the World Urban Forum. However, WUF9’s preparations for a quadrennial report will not be taking place in a vacuum. The conference comes only at the beginning of a busy year, writes Gregory Scruggs.
There is a growing recognition that the ambitious goal of transforming fast-growing cities into major globally attractive hubs of the world economy cannot be reached without including the urban poor as cooperation partners in housing and urban development processes. This situation, combined with pressure from civil society groups, has opened new space for the encounter between civil society and state organisations. Peter Herrle, Josefine Fokdal, Astrid Ley and Sonja Nebel assess this situation in their Cities Alliance background paper, of which an extract is published here.