Country Programme
Working with rapidly urbanizing countries to support national decision-makers in building sustainable national urban policies

Africa Initiative

Our Africa initiative supports the development and implementation of National Urban Policies (NUPs) in a range of African countries.

  • Habitat III’s New Urban Agenda calls for NUPs to address the challenges of Africa’s rapid urbanization process. Effective NUPs will balance power between national, local and community-based authorities and state-owned enterprises to ensure more compact, connected and coordinated urbanization in Africa. The initiative builds on the worked developed for the New Climate Economy’s cities programme in Ethiopia and Uganda between 2014-2016.

  • The Coalition works in Tanzania, which has one of the highest urban population growth rates in the world. Currently, Tanzanian towns and cities struggle to meet people’s basic needs or provide the infrastructure necessary to keep pace with population growth. The Coalition is supporting a pilot national “Urbanisation Laboratory” where a broad range of stakeholders engage in research and debate the political, social and economic causes of the current urban reality. The Coalition now hopes to replicate a similar approach in a second African country.

Forthcoming Work

The Coalition is establishing new programmes in several rapidly urbanising countries, including China and Mexico. Our forthcoming work on national urban policy in these focus countries will be concentrated on

  • debating, defining, and refining our work with key decision-makers and stakeholders in an ongoing process to ensure it meets their own economic, social, and environmental objectives;

  • ensuring that results are legitimised at as many levels as possible, building ownership throughout the process to make the work locally owned in 'reality';

  • working with and through local, trusted institutions and conveners who know what is at stake in the process to tackle common problems and introduce relevant change;

  • blending design and implementation through rapid cycles of planning, action, reflection, and revision drawing on local knowledge, feedback, and energy; and

  • fostering real results: real solutions to real problems through build trust, empowering people, and building long term capacity and sustainability.