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Online Training ‘Sustainable Urban Planning & Development’

We facilitated an online training on Sustainable Urban Planning & Development for nearly 200 participants from South and Southeast Asia as part of the CRIC project (www.resilient-cities.com). In six sessions, topics such as SDGs, NUA, Economic Prosperity, Environmental Sustainability, Social Inclusiveness, and Good Governance were covered.


The first shorter session introduces the trainers, speakers, and participants, explains the supporting materials, the structure and rules of the course, highlights the learning objectives and initiates the contextualisation of Sustainable Urban Development though the SDGs, NUA, and more. 

Economic Prosperity of Cities & Regions

The second module focuses on the economic dimension. It covers principles of regional and metropolitan planning for sustainability; leveraging resources, economic potential and improving competitiveness through urban networks; as well as smart city approaches including the use of data analytics, blockchain and AI to improve cost efficiencies and promote a “systems approach” to water, energy and waste. Lastly, it presents innovative approaches to financing urban development, including resource mobilisation, land management, expenditure control, partnerships, land-value capture, etc.  

Planning for Climate Action & Urban Environment

The third module focuses on environmental sustainability and covers topics such as land use planning and management as a means of promoting more compact, mixed-use and transit-oriented development (TOD) and climate proofing the city. Further topics entail redesigning urban infrastructure, public spaces and facilities to adapt to climate change, as well as protecting and enhancing urban biodiversity through integrated approaches to the urban-rural continuum, parks, gardens, watersheds and water bodies, urban and peri-urban agriculture and gardening. Lastly, implications of the circular economy on the land-use planning and the design of infrastructure and services are elaborated.  

Inequality & Poverty Reduction

The first module focuses on the social dimension. It covers strategic planning including participatory goal setting and visioning, the role of urban planning and management in promoting social inclusion, urban safety, gender equality, local economic development and environmental sustainability. Furthermore, cross-cutting issues are raised, such as improving access and accessibility to basic infrastructure and services including water, sanitation, waste management, health and educational services. Lastly, planning for inclusive mobility and safe and accessible public spaces complement the session. 

Good Governance for Sustainable Development 

The final thematic session focusses on the overlap between sustainability, planning, and governance. Discussed topics include the principles of risk assessment and mitigation, e.g. know-your-city audits; inclusive and adapted urban planning and management, integrating and highlighting needs of vulnerable communities and developing appropriate and tailored approaches; innovative approaches to housing for low-income and vulnerable groups; land and property rights for displaced peoples; access to basic services for all, and SME development. Lastly, it emphasises the role of participatory planning, design and community engagement on, e.g. urban safety and resilience.  

Closing Session 

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