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Cities - Pathways to Prosperity

"We should recognise the importance of cities for growth, for jobs, for prosperity and we should allow people to exercise choice and move to cities to take advantage of the incredible opportunities that they provide. Phenomenal things have happene…

Bolstering Urbanization Efforts : Africa’s Approach to the New Urban Agenda Chapter 4

This book chapter discusses Africa’s New Urban Agenda. The question for African cities as they expand in population and economic importance is twofold: How to grow in ways that are both sustainable and inclusive? And, what forms of governance can en…

A Place for Subnational Governments at the International Climate Negotiating Table

"It can be difficult for subnational governments and cities to acquire a place at the negotiating table for international climate events, such as UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) gatherings. This is despite the fact that subnation…

Cities and Agricultural Transformation in Africa: Evidence from Ethiopia

"Due to the rapid growth of cities in Africa, many more farmers are now living in rural hinterlands in relatively close proximity to cities where many provide food to urban residents. However, empirical evidence on how urbanization affects these far…

Creating Cities of Hope: Before you Vote, Ask Questions, Demand Answers

Although it is not true that every urban society is rich, no country that has ever become rich has done so without urbanising. Cities, with their dense populations, deep labour markets and highly differentiated economies, make human labour far mor…

Shaping the Global Agenda to Maximize City Leadership on the SDGs: The Experiences of Vanguard Cities

During a three-day gathering from April 3-6, 2019 at the Bellagio Rockefeller Center, senior government officials from 14 cities worldwide that are in the vanguard of localizing the SDGs, provided their perspectives in sharing a city-specific agend…

Smart Townships will Build Smarter Cities

Techno-utopian views of ‘Smart Cities’ not only perpetuate inequality and negate future urban resilience, they also disregard the user-centric, social-technical criteria that are crucial to classify a city as ‘smart’—where all who reside in the city…

Urban Economic Growth in Africa: A Framework for Analyzing Constraints to Agglomeration

Urbanization is a key feature of growth and structural change in low-income countries, but African cities have left a large majority of their populations without productive jobs or adequate housing and other services. African cities are urbanizing w…

Nature-based Solutions to Climate Change in Coastal Cities

Presently, there is a unified message in the global policy discourse and internationally mandated scientific assessments that advocates nature-based solutions (NbS) as the basis for transforming society. NbS are underpinned by an ecosystem services …

Urban Management in the 21st Century: Ten Insights from Professor Ed Glaeser

Cities play a vital role in growth and development. Leading global economist, Professor Ed Glaeser summarises the top ten insights into managing cities. Cities are powerful vehicles for prosperity because they bring people together in dense clusters…

Climate Resilience in Developing Cities: Msimbazi Basin, Dar es Salaam

In Dar es Salaam, the Msimbazi Basin is one of the fastest growing and most rapidly urbanising areas. This, coupled with insufficient service provision, high poverty levels and frequent floods, has a significant impact on the population. To address …

Building Better Cities: A New Approach to Housing and Urban Development

Since South Africa became a democracy, desperate people unable to find suitable and affordable housing have constituted a calamitous reality that keeps recurring. Like many pre Covid-19 challenges, the outbreak of the pandemic has increased attentio…

The City Surveillance State: Inside Johannesburg's Safe City Initiative

South African cities are increasingly turning to technology-aided surveillance to police public spaces. Conceived of as ‘safe city’ projects, they are linking cameras to form wide area networks that increasingly use artificial intelligence (AI) to i…

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