Cairo, 5 December 2019 – Since 2018 UN-Habitat has been working to develop five City Profiles for conflict-affected cities in Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Syria and Yemen. Urban profiling guides humanitarian response and assists in the reconstruction and recovery for conflict-affected cities.
In support of this, the second Regional Urban Profiling Workshop took place in Cairo recently to streamline future profiling in the region by discussing the tools and strategies used to support the analysis of urban pillars, and consolidate them into a shared urban framework with an analysis toolbox.
“Urban Profiling provides cross sectoral analysis to better inform urban development, recovery and building back better by providing comprehensive data on urban systems and making strategic recommendations,” stated Dr. Erfan Ali, Director of UN-Habitat Regional Office for Arab States.
The workshop brought together urban experts, practitioners, and representatives from different international agencies who exchanged their experiences to jointly develop a common urban analysis framework for these cities. They also explored the possibility of creating a regional data portal. This regional urban platform could provide data and information on the main urban challenges facing select countries in the Arab Region, enabling different stakeholders to develop evidence-based programmes. The platform would also provide data on the urban themes of UN-Habitat, and on achieving the SDGs and the New Urban Agenda alongside urban indicators and tools in conflict and post conflict situations.
During the workshop each of the four countries, Libya, Yemen, Syria, and Iraq, showcased the tools they have found useful, and discussed the challenges they have faced upon implementing other tools; resulting in a tool inventory for the toolkit.
Reflecting on Iraq’s experience, Mr. Tommaso Cossu notes, “In Sinjar, urban profiles have contributed to better understanding of root causes of fragmentation, ethnic and religious heterogeneity, and enhancing social cohesion.”
The workshop was held under the framework of the Regional Urban Profiling programme, launched in October 2018. This second Regional Urban Profiling Workshop took place in Cairo 4 and 5 December.