In the Indian city of Mumbai, different groups participated in revising the city’s Development Plan. This article highlights the importance of the participation of young people in city planning at the neighbourhood level if planning is to respond adequately and responsibly to contemporary challenges.
By the People, For the People: Social and Environmental Revitalisation of the Caño Martín Peña, Puerto Rico
Improving the living conditions in low-income communities always entails the threat of gentrification processes, eventually displacing the original residents. Lorena Zárate claims that this is not an inevitable outcome, as can be seen in the success of the Caño Martín Peña Land Use Plan.
It is important to think locally when implementing the SDGs, argues Christopher Dekki. Countries in Asia-Pacific, such as Laos and Sri Lanka, are examples of this successful approach.
In an interview with URBANET, Emilia Saiz from UCLG presents her vision for the city network, talking about how the network can best represent local and regional governments in a democratic manner.
Ghana is one of the frontrunner countries dedicated to implementing the SDGs. Highlighting the local perspective, one area of implementation is the revision of the country's National Urban Policy. URBANET spoke to Sylvanus K. Adzornu from the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development about key drivers for successful implementation of SDGs.
Women at the grassroots are experts in the challenges that urban communities are facing every day. As they fulfil different roles from working informal jobs to caring for children and senior citizens, their input is essential in localising the New Urban Agenda in a way that it meets the needs of all citizens. Dr. Limota Goroso Giwa reports on the involvement of grassroots women in urban development in Nigeria.
Interview: “Building resilience requires active public participation” – Vera Bukachi from the Kounkuey Design Initiative
How can vulnerable groups and their needs be integrated into resilience building? URBANET talked to Vera Bukachi from the Kounkuey Design Initiative, who strongly believes that participatory planning and design are key to sustainable urban development.
Accessible public transportation is a critical component of future urban development. Worldwide, more than one billion people live with a disability, and the number of people over the age of 60 is expected to double by 2050. Countries should prioritise accessible mobility—and development agencies can help by encouraging community participation, sharing best practices, and raising awareness, says Jelena Auracher.
Saerbeck, Germany’s award-winning climate protection project serves as a model for many other towns. Ulrich Gunka shows how the municipality, working with its citizens, transformed a former army ammunition depot into a bioenergy park and how it shares their insights with other cities in the world.
It has never been easier to stay in touch with family, friends and colleagues, wherever they live. Yet most of us still lack a digital infrastructure for connecting with the people living next door. Despite their success in some developed countries, hyperlocal social networks are not a fixture of most local communities. Hence, nebenan.de, Germany’s first hyperlocal communication platform, could offer a model for communities in developing countries seeking to leverage the power of hyperlocal communication to increase social capital, says co-founder Michael Vollmann.
Today, the High Level Political Forum for the implementation of the SDGs and Agenda 2030 ends in New York City. On this occasion, Mayor Peter Kurz explains how the city of Mannheim, Germany is working towards implementing Agenda 2030 locally. Political leaders, the city administration and the citizens are collaborating to create an inclusive, citizen-oriented city.
In South Africa, historical shortcomings in city planning by the apartheid regime, rapid urbanisation, and a lack of economic opportunities have increased inequity and social exclusion. Faced with high rates of violence and crime, citizens are getting involved in enhancing safety in public spaces. Margo Weimers and her co-authors present an example from the city of Johannesburg.
“People need to own public space” – Interview with Ebru Gencer from the Center for Urban Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience
Urban populations face risks, not only in regard to natural disasters and climate change, but also in terms of social problems such as unsafe public spaces. In an interview with URBANET, Ebru Gencer from CUDRR+R explains how cities and local governments can make cities more resilient and manage risks effectively.
Sonia Dias has been working with grassroots organizations and in the informal sector in Brazil and beyond since the 1980s. A sociologist by training, her work focusses on participatory processes in waste management, always keeping the focus on the role of women in this field. In an interview with URBANET she spoke about what women can do to better make their voice heard and be more empowered in the city.