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RESPONDING TO CLIMATE CHANGE AND RAPID URBANISATION

GOOD PRACTICE PLATFORM i

To supplement the Call to Action on Sustainable Urbanisation across the Commonwealth, this Good Practice Platform has been created to exemplify the sort of innovative and collaborative work already being undertaken locally to help advance sustainable urbanisation in the Commonwealth. The intention is to illustrate how, with a sharper focus and appropriate resources, the Commonwealth can come together to more effectively tackle the challenges of climate change, rapid urbanisation and the recovery from Covid-19. These examples have been shared by a number of organisations working in the field of sustainable urbanisation, if you would like to submit an example please email info@commonwealthsustainablecities.org.

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Uganda’s relatively young population, where close to 60% of the population below 18 years of age, and over 75% below the age of 35 years, is central to it’s country’s development towards a middle-income country. Traditionally having relied on donor funding for investment in social services, which is now in decline, there is a recognition of a need for greater transparency and accountability, and more efficient implementation. Value for money is now a priority, to ensure that with existing resources, integral services for child welfare and development can be maximised.…

Located at the meeting point of Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland) city centre and Te Waitematā (Waitematā harbour), Te Wānanga is one of the new public spaces transforming our city centre waterfront. A design partnership with Mana Whenua (local Māori authorities) elevated design thinking to deliver a project that expresses local identity, culture history and aspirations for the future. This thinking brought a strong mauri (life force) focus to improving land and marine-based ecological health through the project. Te Wānanga has been designed as an ‘elevated tidal shelf’ which provides space for human, cultural and natural ecologies to interact.…

The Caribbean island of Antigua is extremely vulnerable to the threat of climate change and severe weather conditions, with areas of poorly constructed housing and little in infrastructure and climate defences. Within the community, Ruth Spencer has been organising a programme of educating the public on solar power technology and its potential to lower their cost of electricy. Partnering with local community groups, churches and local suppliers, they have been able to provide materials and training to be able to install solar panels and carry out building upgrades.…

The effects of climate change and socio-political factors are leading to increasingly large populations being displaced, with migrants often fleeing to poor countries with limited resources. The rapidly growing refugee community in Cameroon’s Minawao refugee camp has led to significant environmental and social challenges, including water shortages, damage to valuable grazing land, desertification and deforestation.…

The Food Foundation facilitated a learning partnership between Birmingham, UK and Pune, India which involved the development of policies and practices as part of a ‘Food Smart City’ initiative. Food Smart Cities use data and technology to change the way that food is produced, processed, distributed and consumed. Birmingham and Pune have a common ambition to seize opportunities to support safer, healthier and more sustainable city food environments which prevent malnutrition in all its forms.…

Despite the socio-economic toll of public health interventions cited by numerous academics, there had been a lack of investigation into the inter-related nature of the COVID-19 impacts and how vulnerability and community resilience would play out spatially. This project aimed to tackle the lack of analysed data in Malaysia, to aid decision-making and raise awareness amongst the public regarding the different levels of impacts associated with Covid-19. A GIS (Geographical Information System) multi-criteria analysis was developed to model the relative social, economic, and health impacts and risks of the pandemic, with the overall aim of identifying vulnerable communities in Malaysia.…

Many people in the Pacific continue to move to towns and cities resulting in significant and unsustainable use of resources, environmental degradation, waste and pollution. This set of challenges is particularly problematic for poor and vulnerable populations with limited access to basic infrastructure and services as well as decent livelihoods especially linked to eco-systems and natural resources. These challenges were addressed in this project through strengthening the capacities of local governments and other key urban stakeholders to implement the 2030 Agenda in the area of urban resource management.…

Ga Mashie initiative involved slum upgrading and poverty allevistion that was built around strong community participation and empowerment through integration of a community fund to support economic activites for youth and women.…

In response to the extremely hot weather experienced in Melbourne over several years, the City of Melbourne have developed an Urban Forest Strategy and Open Space Strategy. The aim is to green the city and ultimately reduce the summertime temperatures in Melbourne by 4°C by 2040.…

In the Klang Valley (Greater KL), Malaysia, nearly 1 in 4 residents live in public housing which has many major issues that need to be addressed such as old housing stock and infrastructure, lack of social mobility and empowerment, poor job security and other related systemic challenges. The K2K programme has been designed in response to Covid-19 to test ways to engage with the community during movement control restrictions and deliver aid efficiently and transparently. The project has wider aims to reduce residents’ cost of living, improve standard of living and strengthen management systems in urban poor communities within Malaysian public housing schemes.…