“Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” - this is the call to action formulated in Sustainable Development Goal 11. Although this reflects an awareness of urban governance issues in regard to sustainable development, our author argues that many of these issues are still neglected and need to be further elaborated.
In the run-up to the German Habitat Forum in June 2016, people from all over the world were asked how they imagine the city of the future, what they expected from local, national and international authorities for their city, and how their city has evolved. The series "Voice on Habitat" projects an image of the issues that the New Urban Agenda has to tackle, and gives a voice to the people who will be directly affected by its implementation.
Commentary by Dr. Christoph Beier, Vice-Chair of the GIZ Management Board.
A key recommendation of the German Habitat Forum held in May 2016 in Berlin was that “cities need to be empowered as actors”. Urbanization not only implies geographical changes, but also a political change in order to manage growth. This is where local governments are most needed.
A colourful video overview how local governments in Ghana can increase their Internally Generated Funds and what benefits they provide.
What are the challenges Ghanaian cities face in achieving sustainable development? Isaac Ashai Omdatten, Mayor of Tema, describes how he makes his city more livable.
“Those innovative instruments are now recognised as effective instruments to finance urban development”
Subnational Pooled Financing Mechanisms (SPFMs) are expected to play an increasingly strategic role in financing sustainable development. Jean-François Habeau, Executive Director of the international cities network FMDV, talks about the benefits and specific challenges of Subnational Pooled Financing Mechanisms for developing countries.
To be able to achieve good governance, local governments must not only work together with communities, but also grant them a certain amount of responsibility. In an interview with URBANET, Diana Mitlin, Managing Director of the Global Development Institute at the University of Manchester, talks about the importance of community-led development and the value grassroots organisations can add to local communities.
Multi-stakeholder partnerships and the capacity to lead change collectively are decisive if we aim for the creation of a sustainable urban future. In an interview with Urbanet, Petra Kuenkel, Executive Director of the Collective Leadership Institute, presented her insights on the success factors of urban development partnerships and their implications for the New Urban Agenda.
Across the world, people are relocating to cities. They are the places in which global challenges emerge, but at the same time, where change and progress are shaped. The New Urban Agenda has to support cities to fulfil their role as central actors for sustainable development.
In many countries cities are struggling to satisfy even the basic needs of their population. Therefore, we need a more sober and objective assessment of the essential conditions that will need to be in place if cities are to properly perform the functions anticipated in the SDGs.
In order for cities to be able to fulfil their role as actors and spaces for sustainable development, they require solid financing. The growing need for investment in respect of infrastructure poses a great challenge for cities across the globe to find new ways for them to be able to increase their often scarce resources.
The vibrant, multi-level partnerships that have been formed in Accra through the Cities Alliance Land, Services and Citizenship programme show why inclusive partnerships are our best chance of achieving sustainable development.
To create the best possible outcomes for city projects and planning, local governments need appropriate capacities at all levels. These capacities exist in different forms and in an urban context are arguably especially important on a local level.