Nairobi, May 2021 - UN-Habitat’s Executive Director, Maimunah Mohd Sharif has selected seven new members to join the Stakeholder Advisory Group Enterprise (SAGE) which advises her on engaging partners effectively to support the achievement of the urban dimensions of the sustainable development agenda.

SAGE was established in 2019 in the lead to the first UN-Habitat Assembly. The group had 16 members who were leading urban experts with the capacity to mobilize organizations in their constituent networks to advocate for sustainable urban development.  SAGE members and their constituents play an important role in promoting collaboration among stakeholder engagement in UN-Habitat’s work. They also provide input as observers to UN-Habitat’s intergovernmental meetings to give member states a better insight into the needs of stakeholders such as local governments, civil society organizations, vulnerable groups and the private sector. 

SAGE also helps prepare and  reaches out to partners to take part in key events such as the World Urban Forum, UN-Habitat’s premier international gathering on cities, Urban October events and other urban campaigns. It also contributes to the production and review of some of UN-Habitat’s publications and other knowledge products.

This year UN-Habitat’s engagement with SAGE has a strong focus on policy development, advocacy, design of selected urban programmes to ensure they are inclusive, resource mobilization, and monitoring and reporting progress towards the urban dimensions of the Sustainable Development Goals and the New Urban Agenda.

The new composition of SAGE will see eight members serving for a second term up to 2023 to ensure continuity. These continuing members are Prof. Siraj Sait (United Kingdom), Ms. Dyan Currie (Australia), Ms. Alice Charles (Switzerland), Dr. Eugenie Birch (United States of America), Ms. Emilia Saiz (Spain), Ms. Rose Molokoane (South Africa), Prof. Sahar Attia (Egypt), and Ms. Magdalena García (Mexico).  They will now be joined by Ms. Natou Bamba-Colon (Côte d'Ivoire), Mr. Samuel Rajan (India), Mr. Hannes Juhlin Lagrelius (Sweden), Mr. Ullrich Sierau (Germany), Prof. Carol D. Archer (Jamaica), Mr. Jim Hanna (United States of America), and Mr. Peter Mill Oborn (United Kingdom).

The new members were appointed after a rigorous selection process to identify urban experts who could also bring in new constituents and partners such as the private sector and foundations.  The selection also aimed at achieving gender and geographical balance in the membership of SAGE.   The current membership of 16 has been expanded to a maximum of 20 to ensure that regions such as Eastern Europe and Arab States are better represented. 

SAGE’s membership is well placed to better advise and support the work of UN-Habitat, and improve stakeholder engagement in several key initiatives including the campaign on Climate Action 4 Cities, Urban October, and  COP26 this year, the High Level Meeting on the New Urban Agenda and the World Urban Forum in 2022 and the next UN-Habitat Assembly in 2023.