All across Africa, the most rapidly urbanising continent, locals are taking action to improve their neighbourhoods and get access to adequate housing and services. Leading up the UN Habitat Assembly, URBANET presents examples from Senegal, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.
Socialist-era apartment buildings in Vietnam’s cities, so-called KTT, are decaying rapidly. Tenants’ community organisations could help upgrade them and prevent redevelopment, says Boram Kimhur.
Urban areas around the world face the challenge of delivering affordable housing to ever growing populations. Availability and expenses of both building material and skilled workers are a common hindrance. Turning sand into a revolutionary new building material might offer a solution, writes PolyCare Co-Founder Dr Gerhard Dust.
Housing has become a policy issue that interests not only housing departments and local construction authorities, but Central Banks and financial players as well. Kecia Rust from the Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa (CAHF) explains why housing has become an investment opportunity, and the role that policy makers play.
Daniel Kerber is the founder and CEO of More than Shelters, a social business that brings a creative and innovative approach to the humanitarian context. Since it was founded in 2012, More than Shelters has been active in various places: parts of Jordan that border on neighbouring Syria, transit routes, and places where migrants and refugees arrive, such as Greece and Berlin, Germany. URBANET asked Daniel Kerber what More than Shelters brings to the housing debate.
Projects aimed at the upgrading of settlements often face the question of how to increase living standards for all residents – while keeping housing costs at a level affordable for the original population. The initiative "Casa Minha Nosso Bairro" takes an innovative approach towards this issue, aiming at living conditions that nurture a peaceful living environment for all urban residents
Many of Lagos’ residents live in informal settlements with no or limited access to basic services. With new immigrants arriving from rural areas every day, pressure increases on the already poor living conditions. Comprehensive action is needed to tackle interconnected social, environmental and health issues, says Olaoluwa Pheabian Akinwale.
Brazil's social housing programme Minha Casa, Minha Vida prides itself on having delivered an enormous amount of affordable housing. But putting a roof over people's heads is not sufficient if the settlements are located on the far outskirts of a city, depriving residents of access to urban resources, claims Clarisse Cunha Linke.
“Minha Casa, Minha Vida” (My House, My Life) is Brazil’s largest affordable housing project to this day. Priscila Pacheco describes the buildings’ sustainability features that benefit the residents and the environment.
A radical reform of Khartoum’s housing policy is required to improve the living conditions of slum dwellers. For this, we need to examine the socio-economic situation of the urban poor and of those who live in the city’s informal settlements.
Housing and labour are mutually dependent, but their connection is overlooked in economic policies most of the time. Edmundo Werna, Ramin Keivani and Youngha Cho argue that a closer look and a different understanding of how the two markets are linked will lead to more effective solutions and better housing and livelihood conditions, especially in the Global South.