Category Archives: Uncategorized

The World Resources Institute is to launch a World Resources Report Towards a More Equal City,series

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Announcement of the launch by the World Resources Report (WRR),Towards a More Equal City,series. The paper is entitled,Including the Excluded: Supporting Informal Workers for More Equal and Productive Cities in the Global South, co-authored with WIEGO.

The launch event will be held in WRI’s office in D.C. Please find all the information here Click here for more information.

Building Cities’ Biodiversity Portfolios: The Mapping of Urban Natural Assets in Kampala City, Uganda

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Ecosystems health is in so many ways a premise to human wellbeing. Well-functioning ecosystems provide a steady flow of goods and services including but not limited to food, climate regulation, nutrient cycling, and aesthetic amenities. Today, however, many ecosystems and the services they provide are under increasing pressure most so in the densely populated urban areas. Kampala city with a day time human population of about 3 million people and an annual population growth rate of 4% was ranked as the 13th fastest growing cities on the planet.
Click here for the full artical.


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The World Urban Forum (WUF) is a non-legislative technical forum convened by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) held since 2002.
The Forum gathers a wide range of participants including, but are not limited to, national, regional and local governments, non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations, professionals, research institutions and academies, professionals, private sector, development finance institutions, foundations, media and United Nations organizations and other international agencies.
The Ninth session of the World Urban Forum (WUF9), took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on7th -13thFebruary 2018, has been recognized by the General Assembly resolution 70/210 as the first session to have a thematic focus on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda adopted at the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, Habitat III. The Theme of the Ninth session of the World Urban Forum (WUF9) was “Cities 2030, Cities for All: Implementing the New Urban Agenda” – placed the Forum’s focus on the New Urban Agenda as a tool and accelerator for achieving Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals.Click here for the full report

How Ugandans are mapping their neighborhoods to Solve Energy and Health-Related Risks

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The Urban Action Lab of Makerere University Uganda, is a lead partner of Co-designing Energy Communities (CO-DEC), a collaborative research project in Kampala and Nairobi, which is fostering cross-sector learning amongst university students and local community members to scale up local energy solutions, such as briquette-making, and create highly accurate maps of risk-prone businesses, infrastructure and residential dwellings, in regards to the use of traditional and modern energy sources. The community co-researchers collaborated with academics from Makerere University to map their own neigbourhood of Kasubi-Kawaala, in order to address in-and outdoor air pollution associated with poor management of wastes, leaky toilet seals and sewer pits, the use of biomass and fossil fuels from the informal urban economy.The maps were boundary objects for community-led learning and action that linked participating organisations and individual co-researchers to local sustainability-oriented experiments around regenerative use of wastes for energy briquettes; planting of indigenous trees with leafy canopies that reduce air pollutants in homesteads and around business premises; while building consensus on the policy options for enabling actors from Kampala Capital City Authority to own and energetically pursue an agenda for scaling up alternative energy solutions that bring about co-benefits in the health and housing sector. Click here for the full report

UAL hosts INTALInC workshop on ‘Transport and Mobility: Pathways to Transformation’ on the 23rd -24th Jan 2018 at Makerere University.

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UAL hosted a workshop on transport and mobility pathways to transformation held at Makerere University. It is the fourth INTALInC international research into practice workshop with nearly 30 delegates in attendance, representing local stakeholders and universities in Ghana, Nigeria,  the Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds UK  the University of Manchester and Durham University UK.

The workshop Highlights include; Transforming land use planning for mobility, making neighbourhoods walkable, and affordable. The core aim of transport planning must be to enable people to get to work and school and to access essential goods and health facilities. And must have a kind of solution to address poverty, increase transport and have equitable use of space by non-motorists and building on the existing than tearing down.  Mobility is a key factor in the social and economic development and provides people with access to markets, employment, education and healthcare, and plays a significant role in reducing poverty and must not become an end in itself.  Urban mobility systems ought to be (re) designed with the wellbeing of poor and commuting patterns in mind.

Uganda Housing Cooperative Union Ltd engages stakeholders in a dialogue

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Uganda Housing Cooperatives Ltd engages stakeholders in dialogue on affordable housing In Kampala on 2nd November 2017.
Affordable housing; is it a myth or reality? Uganda Housing Cooperatives gathered stakeholders from across to answer this question. Therese included academia, government of Uganda, private sector and civic organization.
Prof Shuaib Lwasa from Makerere University Urban Action Lab attended the workshop and made a presentation on “research and practice towards achieving affordability”. Key points from his presentation were housing can’t not be viewed as is a product but needs to be understood as “a process”. Housing at all economic levels has to be set in the context of community, involving many people and organizations. If we are to provide affordable housing for all, the public, private and social sectors have to come together. Embracing the informalities in order to provide affordable housing example unlocking the land tenure through land sharing.

The workshop wrapped up with the next steps or way forwards like research on policy and building alternatives which the Urban Action Lab will take on.

Flattening the hierarchies between academics and community agents in research for sustainable energy communities in Kampala City, Uganda

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As part of its approach to changing the culture of knowledge creation, through collaborative learnings amongst academic researchers, community representatives and policy actors, the Urban Action Lab (UAL) Makerere University Uganda in partnership with the Living Lab of University of Nairobi, has enhanced the collaborative learning capacities of postgraduate students at the Department of Geography

and Community representatives from Kasubi-Kawaala. With support from the International Social Science Council (ISSC), under a SIDA-funded project, dubbed: co-designing energy communities (CODEC), research questions, methods and instruments were subjected to academic and non-academic reviews during a workshop that comprised of: 4 postgraduate students and 2 scientists from UAL; 4 community co-researchers that are involved in a waste to energy project in Kasubi-Kawaala; and the Principal Scientist from University of Nairobi. By facilitating and deepening dialogue around what is happening in Kasubi-Kawaala, and what should be done to address gaps around alternative cooking energy for positive health outcomes in households, both academics and community agents had an equal chance to contribute to the framing of research questions; co-designing methodologies (household survey and GIS mapping) for finding and experimenting options for households energy that results into reduced health risks (e.g. respiratory infections) in low-income neighborhoods.

 Community members and researchers discussing the progress of the project at Makerere University Guest House.

After five days of knowledge exchange and engagement, both students and community actors admitted to having expanded their skill set for solution-focused interfaces between academics and non-academics in confronting the challenges facing their neighborhood environments beyond the issue of energy, to include other sustainability challenges such sanitation and urban health. After learning how academics and community agents operate alongside each other to aggregate their perspectives on a given research and societal issue, both the students and community co-researchers have embarked on co-creating maps for a relational visualization of energy sources and use patterns within and beyond Kasubi-Kawaala, while they also undertake drawings of interior designs for different housing types and the implications for indoor air quality.

Community members and Researchers discussing about the project at Grand Global Hotel in Kampala.


Enroll for the (Massive Open Online Course): “Planning for Climate Change in African Cities”

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IHS, the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam is launching their 1st MOOC (Massive Open Online Course): “Planning for Climate Change in African Cities” and I’m teaching.  Developed in collaboration with the African Local Governments Academy (ALGA)United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG) and Erasmus University Rotterdam, this free MOOC is 5 weeks and it offers the basics of urban resilience and adaptation, climate change planning, and policy assessment tools.

Who is this class for? 

The course is open to students and professionals in the fields of urban planning, environmental science, climate change, and other related fields.

> Watch the trailer                  Enroll now                   Read more about this course

Meet the lecturers 

WRI Ross Center Convenes Urban Experts to Explore Innovation in African Cities

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WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities Convened Urban Experts in Nairobi, Kenya for a Workshop on Equal Cities for All in Nairobi, Kenya on June 28, 2017.

Can we have cities that grow sustainably while providing opportunity for all? At a workshop in Nairobi, WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities gathered stakeholders from across sub-Saharan Africa to help answer this question.

Participants came from academia, urban planning, business, the technology sector, community groups and other areas, to discuss methods for innovating and working together to create more sustainable cities. This was the first meeting in a series of WRI Ross Center workshops designed to examine urban innovation and transformative change in the region, particularly Nairobi, Kenya and Kampala, Uganda.Click here for the abstract

New study identifies what low emitting cities can do to mitigate climate change

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“Options for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the low-emitting city and metropolitan region of Kampala” is a new publication by Prof. Shuaib Lwasa, the Cordinator Urban Action Lab, Click here for the abstract