Actions to achieve Sustainable Urban Development

Why actions matter in achieving the 2030 Agenda

We have less than seven years remaining to reach the Sustainable Development Goals. In 2020, the United Nations Secretary-General called upon a Decade of Action to accelerate and mobilise solutions at local and global levels and fully engage partners, people and communities across all sectors to leverage transformative changes. Therefore, it is crucial to collect and monitor committed actions and advance the progress and achievement of the Agenda 2030.

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WUF 11 – The Katowice Declared Actions

The eleventh session of the World Urban Forum (WUF11) took place in Katowice, Poland, from 26 to 30 June 2022 under the theme Transforming our Cities for a Better Urban Future.

The theme’s relevance is stark as the world comes together to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable, especially after the devastating effects of Covid-19 and the refugee situation due to the crisis in Ukraine.

The WUF11 concluded with the Katowice Declared Actions. These declared actions will carry the sustainable development agenda forward to the next World Urban Forum in Cairo, Egypt in January 2024, and beyond. They include recommendations and commitments that representatives of government, civil society and the private sector take back to their home cities for further discussion and implementation. WUF11 Katowice Declared Actions are voluntary actions and commitments that support the NUA implementation and accelerate the SDGs’ attainment. 

WUF 10 - The Abu Dhabi Declared Actions
The Tenth Session of the World Urban Forum (WUF10) debated issues related to rapid urbanisation, building inclusive and resilient cities, and taking steps to accelerate their work towards the New Urban Agenda as an accelerator to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in the Decade of Action. WUF10 began with a call to action and concluded with the Abu Dhabi Declared Actions committed by different partners and stakeholder groups.

The Abu Dhabi Declared Actions comprises actions committed on a voluntary basis by governments, partners, individuals, communities, and the business sector from cities and countries around the world to accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. The Actions were produced in consultation with the WUF10 Advisory Group representatives from diverse urban development partners. The Actions are strategic level goals that will result from implementing new initiatives from various institutions and actors.

For more information on the Declared Actions, please visit here.

The first report on the implementation of the Abu Dhabi Declared Actions: one year of implementation was published in 2021. The report details successes and highlights actions partners are engaging in to fulfil their commitments.

Actions At-a-Glance



Older persons and their welfare do not feature in almost all strategies of Kenya Urban planning including housing, mobility sanitation, social protection and access to quality and affordable services. We intend to hold well coordinated, older people lead events where we seek audience with the Council of Governors, city planners and other relevant city officers. We are in the process of participatory policy briefs, position papers and factsheets development for submission during the meetings. The briefs will include all areas of concern and recommended actions. We shall have quarterly follow-up sessions to monitor progress. Results: Reported more accessibility of services by older persons within the city. Increased invitations to participatory activities for older persons'' representatives.
Source: World Urban Forum

Climate change action

Continue implementing the 500,000 fruit trees project and reduce, reuse and recycle waste for circular industrial economy and clean environment. Reduce, reuse, recycle of waste will reduce soil, air and water pollution especially in the informal settlements of most urban areas like Kibra. The process enhances circular industrial economy with availability of raw materials that is waste. This will curb youth unemployment menace and enhance livelihoods. Tree planting is important for sustainable future. Clean air will only be enhanced by planting more trees currently 1.7 million people die of air pollution globally. Restoration of water catchment areas that supply the urban settlements with water will only be guaranteed by planting more trees and increasing forest cover with trees. Trees enhances cultural significance with communities utilizing parts of tree for medicinal purposes. For example mango trees leaves, guava leaves, moringa fruits and leaves, pawpaw seeds just to mention afew have been used to cure and prevent ailments and diseases. Fruits also form part of Nutrition hence more fruits better health.
Source: World Urban Forum

Housing at the center of SDGs and Sustainable Urban Development

Habitat for Humanity is committed to supporting the successful implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the achievement of SDG Target 11.1 amongst other housing-related Sustainable Development targets. Habitat for Humanity’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live demands that we ensure that the housing we produce and facilitate be inclusive, adequate, affordable and resilient. We recognize that underlying vulnerabilities result in and are exacerbated by inadequate and unaffordable housing, the world over. As communities around the world rebuild from the social, economic and health impacts of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Habitat for Humanity recognizes that there is a unique opportunity to support resilience and stability by addressing the global housing deficit with urgency. To contribute to this, Habitat for Humanity will be launching a global advocacy campaign to increase equitable access to housing in informal settlements through improved policies and systems in climate adaptation, empowered participation, land tenure, and basic services. Habitat for Humanity has been promoting the centrality of housing as a global imperative through all engagements at previous World Urban Forums. Habitat for Humanity strongly supported the New Urban Agenda and played a key role in promoting emphasis on adequate and affordable housing, secure land tenure, and community-led development. At Habitat III, we committed to implement the New Urban Agenda by increasing access to decent shelter for over 200 million people by 2036. To achieve this goal, Habitat for Humanity committed to promoting sustainable cities, increasing security of tenure and catalyzing market development, and we saw amazing progress/impact through: • Improving access to land for housing by advocating for and changing policies and systems in 40 countries through the Solid Ground global advocacy campaign, which impacted over 12 million people. • Increasing access to affordable housing for 40 million people by 2020 through a wide array of community development strategies, advocacy initiatives and market development approaches. • Facilitating better functioning inclusive housing markets to enable over 21 million people to access improved shelter solutions through the Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter. • Increasing access to adequate and affordable housing through a new Global Urban Approach, GUA, that guides Habitat’s work in urban areas to be people-centered, evidence-based, integrated, targeted, contribute towards systemic change, and implemented in collaboration with key community, public and private sector stakeholders. Habitat’s work in Liberia piloted the implementation of the GUA, which involved undertaking a housing ecosystem analysis that led to the identification of community, market, policy and institutional capacity building interventions. These interventions not only contributed to improving the living conditions of 30,000 slum dwellers in Peace Island but also systemic enhancements to housing market and policy environment. As we look ahead, we will continue to live into our commitments to the NUA and SDG 11.1, including through the development of a new global advocacy campaign focused on increasing equitable access to adequate housing specifically for residents of informal settlements through improved policies and systems in climate adaptation, empowered participation, land tenure, and basic services.
Source: World Urban Forum

Improving access to basic services for indigenous communities of Abuja

HipCity Innovation will be engaging with local governments and agencies of government to improve access to basic services for indigenous communities of Abuja as well as push for the inclusion of these marginalized groups in government project design in the areas of basic healthcare, basic education and WASH.
Source: World Urban Forum

To drive a global movement to end homelessness by advocating for policy, data collection, knowledge sharing, and concrete actions at local and national levels to address homelessness

The Institute of Global Homelessness (IGH) brings evidence-based policy and practice to the forefront of conversations around sustainable and equitable cities and homelessness. IGH partners with a diverse range of stakeholders in cities across 6 continents including city, state, and national governments, homeless organizations, collective impact groups, and other civil society associations. As part of our Declared Action, IGH will: - Champion the description of global homelessness from the June 2020 ECOSOC and December 2021 General Assembly resolutions on homelessness “depending on national context, [homelessness] can be described as a condition where a person or household lacks habitable space, which may compromise their ability to enjoy social relations, and includes people living on the streets, in other open spaces or in buildings not intended for human habitation, people living in temporary accommodation or shelters for the homeless, and, in accordance with national legislation, may include, among others, people living in severely inadequate accommodation without security of tenure and access to basic services” - Provide technical assistance and capacity building support to local and national government efforts to collect and report disaggregated data on homelessness - Support Member State efforts to develop and implement national policies that align with evidence-based best practices - Provide technical assistance and capacity building support to local and national governments to implement and expand effective and evidence-based interventions to homelessness such as: the presence of a lead coordinating agency, coordinated entry to homelessness services, prevention programs, and investment in specialized and evidence-based interventions, such as assertive street outreach services, individual case management and housing with services - Advocate for a UN convention / treaty on homelessness - Advocate for October 10, World Homelessness Day, to be recognized in the UN calendar With the current gaps in definition and measurement and the lack of evidence-based programs, we expect that homelessness will continue to be a growing local and international concern. By carrying forward our actions to define homelessness, measure homelessness according to that definition, implement and expand evidence-based interventions on homelessness, and measure homelessness again, we will have our intended transformative impact of reducing – and eventually ending – homelessness worldwide.
Source: World Urban Forum

Planning for a Better Urban Future

The Global Planners Network commits to working collaboratively across the professional planning organisations globally to enable and empower communities to engage in planning for a better urban future through transforming our cities and regions. Successful capacity building would lead to significant uplift in voluntary local reporting. This there would be increased community engagement with strategic and local plans. As the planning profession develops our network will expand supporting capacity in areas most needed. The impact of this can be observed through learning and knowledge sharing. Furthermore, we will continue to influence legislation in our respective jurisdictions to ensure communities are sufficiently engaged with the planning process.
Source: World Urban Forum

Pact for the Future of Humanity

Local and Regional Governments will continue to push for the transformation of the social contract within the framework of the SDGs and through a strengthened partnership with the international community and civil society. The Pact for the Future builds on the notion that local and regional governments have a critical role as a political actor whose main objective is to safeguard the dreams and aspirations of communities, while balancing the needs of current generations with those of generations to come. It understands equality as the indispensable building block of any sustainable society and will underpin the need for a changed relationship with nature, which necessitates renewed governance with trust as an indispensable mortar between actors. Under three axes (people, planet, and government) the Pact for the Future will redefine access to basic services with the right to the city as a core block, and renewed sets of cultural rights that place people at the centre; it will transcend business-as-usual in the transition towards a zero carbon society with local resilience at the core; and will foster local and global democracy, cooperation among spheres of government, and the development of a renewed multilateral system. The Pact for the Future strives to place our communities at the core of decision-making mechanisms, building resilience and sustainability for a better-shared future. It will address the development of capacities for local and regional governments, the potential of transformative diplomacy and a more robust, structural dialogue with national governments to ensure we can deliver our ambitious targets and objectives laid out in the global agendas, connecting the 2030 Agenda with the UN Summit of the Future, as well as the recommendations of the UNSG’s Common Agenda, and build on concepts such as the global commons and ambitious actions to protect our planet. The Pact for the Future seeks to preserve and foster societies of proximity, empathy and solidarity, empowering individuals through culture and the right to the city. To encourage our territories to have the tools to put an end to the housing crisis, to transform our production and consumption habits, and to build bridges between citizens and institutions based on innovative, sustainable and inclusive service provision. To create, in short, spaces where the ideas that lead the transformations we need can flourish.
Source: World Urban Forum

Ensure partipatory approaches are prioritised

Private sector led engagement with the local authorities to upgrade Mapolotto Chibolya and Kanyama into better configuted dwellings for municipal service provision in a win win situation.
Source: World Urban Forum

Inspiring cities practices for digital inclusion, digital sobriety and territorial data

The Fnau has coordinated the French contribution to the Flagship program people focused smart cities , for the upcoming road map about digital transformation the Fnau will deep knowledge about innovative governance, policies and tools for digital inclusion, digital sobriety and territorial data management
Source: World Urban Forum

Links between the NUA and the Agenda for the EU

Following up the conclusion of the side event about the urban agendas , the aim is to formulate proposals to better link the NUA /SDGwith the Agenda for the EU both through the topics and methods of implementations ( coalitions)
Source: World Urban Forum