Housing at the center of SDGs and Sustainable Urban Development

Source of Action
World Urban Forum
2022 - 2023
Last Updated
27 March 2023


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.

Outcomes and Impacts

Increased and equal access to basic services, sustainable mobility and public space (most indicators at outcome level measure institutional outcome), Increased and secure access to land and adequate and affordable housing, Effective settlements growth and regeneration, Effective adaptation of communities and infrastructure to climate change, Enhanced social integration and inclusive communities, Enhanced resilience of the built environment and infrastructure, Resilience

Lead Entity

Habitat for Humanity

Key Dates

Start year: 7/1/2022

Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 1 - End poverty in all its forms everywhere

Goal 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

Goal 6 - Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Goal 9 - Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation

Goal 11 - Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable