Enabling participatory democracy is the goal of South Africa's online platform Grassroot, where community members get together to change their municipalities for the better – with considerable success, as Katlego Mohlabane, outreach and campaigns coordinator at Grassroot, illustrates with examples from Mnandini and Mzondi.
With the sectors for development and finance closely intertwined, a municipality's financing mechanism of choice significantly influences its development path. Khady Sarr, Programme Director of the Dakar Municipal Finance Programme, outlines several models and explains the advantages of bond loans – for municipalities and investors alike.
Revenue from building rights, or land value capture, plays an important role for municipal finance. Martim O. Smolka and Camila Maleronka report on the specific challenges and achievements in the city of São Paulo.
Urban land offers governments in developing countries a vital opportunity for self-financing development. While authorities often see these taxes as administratively burdensome and politically impossible, this doesn’t have to be the case.
More than one third of Vietnam's population is living in cities, requiring effective sanitation and stormwater services. Yet their provision is limited, with an estimation of less than 10 per cent of wastewater being treated in urban areas. Sebastian Malter argues that a diversification of drainage systems will support sustainable urban development.