Achieving inclusive, resilient and sustainable cities

Sep 9, 2013

The urbanization process in the Asia-Pacific region is proceeding at unprecedented speed and scale. Rapid urbanization linked to economic growth brings new opportunities and challenges for sustainable and inclusive development. The pace of urban growth has caught many governments and communities in Asia and the Pacific unprepared. The demand for land, shelter, transport, energy supplies and social and environmental services has outstripped supply. The importance of cities to inclusive development and poverty reduction provides a compelling case for a greater and more strategic UNDP involvement in urban issues in the Asia-Pacific region.

The UNDP Strategy Paper on Sustainable and Inclusive Urbanization in Asia Pacific aims to support national and local partners including governments and local communities to achieve inclusive, resilient and sustainable cities. In this regards, the Paper provides a strategic framework that will assist countries in formulating and implementing a specific national strategy focusing on cities as urban system and interconnection of different sectors in order to advance the cross-sectoral collaborations at the national and sub-national levels. It provides a common objective and broad guidelines which can be applied to the specific national context.

The Strategy paper highlights cross-sectoral implementation through the UNDP key focus areas: 

  1. urban governance and empowerment with particular attention to secondary cities and peri-urban areas;
  2. poverty and vulnerability focusing on the multi sectoral approach to urban poverty;
  3. environmental sustainability, energy efficiency and climate resilience; and
  4. natural disaster risk reduction. It focuses on targeting citywide and nationwide impacts and strengthening partnerships to scale up impact.

It anchors urban strategies at the local level by building strategic partnership directly with cities and local governments, taking more integrated approach in supporting local authorities to move beyond sectoral project and spearhead One-UN at the city level. It emphasizes the growth of cities that are more inclusive, resilient and sustainable. Last but not least, the Paper hopes to facilitate urban policy dialogue and reform for sustainable and inclusive urbanization in the region.


Omar Siddique
Programme Specialist – Gender Mainstreaming and Inclusive Growth

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