UN-Habitat UNI together with HESI (the Higher Education Sustainability Initiative) are in the process of defining a Sustainable Urban Development action plan for universities.

The action plan aims to orient universities supporting cities in their path towards sustainability and also identify better mechanisms to back effective collaboration between academic resources and urban strategies.



Season 3 of the Global Urban Lectures launched

15 January, 2016 - The Global Urban Lecture Series is an initiative by UN-Habitat’s partnership with universities worldwide - UNI - to bring the knowledge and experiences of urban experts associated with the agency’s work to a wide audience. The series reaches not only the general public but also the 185 partner universities of UNI, and is currently being used both for personal further education purposes and professional training.


UN-Habitat launches international urban design student competition

Kenya, 14 January 2016 - UN-Habitat is launching a competition to promote collaboration between Kenya’s students and their peers elsewhere and to promote the importance of urban design. The competition is being organized in collaboration with Kenya’s Urban Development Department (UDD) and the Ministry of Land, Housing and Urban Development. It is part of UN-Habitat's support to the Kenya Municipal Program under the broad framework of ‘Support to a Sustainable Urban Development Sector in Kenya’, which is funded by SIDA.


Principles of Planned Urbanization - Dr. Joan Clos, Executive Director UN-Habitat

In this lecture, Dr Clos discusses planned versus spontaneous urbanization, the issues this entails and three concrete principles for planning sustainable cities. Together they form a three-legged approach to sustainable urbanization.


10 things designers need to work on - Christian Werthmann, Leibniz University Hannover

Christian Werthmann from Leibniz University, Hannover, summarizes his international experience of non-formal urbanism into ten points aimed to act as a guideline for designers intending to work in these contexts. Based on real life experiences and research he describes what is essential to keep in mind when designing towards sustainable urbanization in dense urban environments. This lecture was filmed in association to the Metropolis Nonformal - Anticipation symposium in Munich 2013 including the launch of the Laufen Manifesto for a Humane Design Culture.


Slums - Past, Present and Future - Eugenie Birch, University of Pennsylvania

In this lecture, Eugenie Birch draws heavily on history to illustrate the location, pace, trajectory, documentation and varied solutions of historic slum conditions in Western Europe and North America; tracking contemporary slum development in Latin America, Asia and Africa, and outlines the commonalities and differences with past experience. Birch places slum development in stages that correspond to the urbanization rates and peak growth of slums of the places in question, and discusses adaptations, their benefits and costs.