Habitat UNI is UN-Habitat’s partnership with universities worldwide.

UNI (previously HPUI – Habitat Partner University Initiative) was introduced as a means of promoting cooperation between UN-Habitat and institutions of higher education, as well as facilitating exchange and cooperation among universities globally. UNI promotes universities becoming closer partners of cities, actively engaged in problem solving, thus closing the gap between academia and practice and encouraging collaborative learning. UNI promotes and facilitates the dissemination of educational and research products of its members and involve scholars, researchers and students in a number of activities.

The partnership is open, and invites all levels of academia to engage.

The collaborations aspire to create the next generation of urban leaders, managers, researchers and practitioners. UN-Habitat acts as a catalyst, facilitating partnerships between universities and other agenda partners.

To the right you will find more information on how to become a member, as well as information on current activities and collaborations of UNI.

Dr. Sahar Attia, Professor of Architecture and Urban Design, Habitat UNI chairperson

"Habitat UNI is the medium of change of ideas and expertise, being a member in UNI we had the opportunity to meet and collaborate with global academics and researchers within a multidisciplinary platform for sustainable cities."

Dr. Sahar Attia, Professor of Architecture and Urban Design, Habitat UNI chairperson

individual members from research institutions around the world
partner institutions contributing to knowledge sharing on sustainable urbanisation
The Habitat UNI online platform facilitates knowledge exchange and provides tools for collaboration

Related Sustainable Development Goals

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Leaving no one and no place behind

Hover over or click the icons to learn about UN-Habitat's work on social inclusion here.

Through the promotion of collaboration between academia and practitioners on topics such as informal urbanism, safer cities and urban accessibility, Habitat UNI actively works towards a world in which everyone can benefit from the advantages of sustainable urbanisation.

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Habitat UNI’s dedicated Gender hub documents, sets and promotes a global agenda on gender equality and women’s rights to the city.

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Youth, children and older persons, especially those in situations of particular risk of marginalization, such as girl child and female-headed households, are often excluded from access to housing, urban basic services, public spaces and infrastructure, and the overall benefits of urbanization. Young women and men have been a key focus of UN-Habitat’s work. The agency has successfully advocated for the role of youth as leaders in sustainable urban development, recognizing the guiding principle of the SDGs of “leaving no one behind,” and the New Urban Agenda vision of cities for all. 

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Sustainable urban development can only be achieved if persons with disabilities are included meaningfully in decision-making and are able to access their rights. UN-Habitat partners with representative groups and individual rights holders, as well as national and local governments, relevant UN bodies and civil society to maximize impact and to meaningfully ensure that the rights including accessibility and universal design of persons with disabilities are promoted, respected and protected. 

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Donors and partners

The heart of the Habitat UNI network is its members from all around the world. These UN-Habitat´s academic agenda partners are unique not only in their positioning within cities but also concerning their focus on the built environment, having the definite aim of translating abstract concepts into physical realities.