Commonwealth Local Government Forum

Southern Africa \ Cities and urbanisation

In 2014, 54% of the global population was living in urban areas and this is predicted to rise to 66% by 2050. The characteristics of cities differ greatly across countries and regions of the Commonwealth and some issues facing large and megacities will differ from those faced by secondary cities and towns and across the Commonwealth, the degree of urbanisation varies significantly. Whilst 38.1% of the population of the Commonwealth lived in urban settlements in 2014, Commonwealth Europe is 82% urban and Commonwealth South-East Asia 78% with Commonwealth Africa 41%, Commonwealth South Asia 33% and the Commonwealth Pacific Islands 18% urban. Achievement of SDG 11 will require cities to actively address the key dimensions of sustainable development – the economy, the society and the environment and to be inclusive, and proactive to ensure safety of all citizens. Subthemes includes urbanisation and migration, urban planning, informal settlements, formal and informal urban economy, disaster risk reduction and emergency planning, safety and security in cities, and smart cities and ICT.

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Featured

2016 Barbara Ward Lecture: Debra Roberts

Dr Debra Roberts of eThekwini Municipality, Durban, South Africa, gives the 2016 Barbara Ward Lecture. She called for more to be done to join the dots between the 'New Urban Agenda', being prepared for Habitat III, and the realities of implementation at the local level.

Author: Debra Roberts Publisher: IIED Publication year: 2016


Rethinking sustainable cities: Accessible, green and fair

Sustainable urbanisation has moved to the forefront of global debate, research and policy agendas over recent years. Rapid urbanisation throughout China, India and many other low and middle income countries poses new challenges both locally and internationally at a time when urban areas worldwide are threatened by climate/environmental change. This compact book is designed to make a signal contribution to the sustainable urbanisation agenda through authoritative interventions contextualising, assessing and explaining clearly the relevance and importance of three central characteristics of sustainable towns and cities everywhere, namely that they should be accessible, green and fair. These three terms form key tenets of the work of Mistra Urban Futures (MUF), an international research centre on sustainable urbanisation based in Gothenburg, Sweden, and working through transdisciplinary research platforms there, in Greater Manchester (UK), Cape Town (South Africa) and Kisumu (Kenya). Additional platforms are being established in southern Sweden, Asia and Africa.

Author: David Simon Publisher: Policy Press Publication year: 2016


Sedibeng District Municipality assisted in achieving a clean audit for two years running

All activities of local government in South Africa are tightly regulated. There are numerous Acts governing how municipalities need to run operations. Municipalities are challenged by not having effective and efficient systems, tools, and processes to support managing their operations. This ultimately impacts on their ability to being able to effectively and timeously monitor their performance against their annual plans. However, the Sedibeng District Municipality was on a manual system that had a negative impact on its effectiveness and productivity. Sedibeng therefore needed to implement a performance management system that would comply with South African legislative requirements. The municipality went on an open tender and awarded the project to Microsoft partner Vision Activ that specialises in performance management solutions for both the corporate and public sectors.

Author: Microsoft CityNext Publisher: Microsoft CityNext Publication year: 2016


Intergovernmental Fiscal Transfers in Developing Countries Case Studies from the Commonwealth

Despite growing fiscal devolution, efficient and effective intergovernmental transfers – the transfer of money from central to lower levels of government – remain a vital sub-national government financing in developing countries. This research study examines different approaches to intergovernmental transfers (ICTs) in developing countries in the Commonwealth, and assesses their relative strengths and weaknesses. It includes detailed case studies of India and Kenya, lessons learned from IGT systems in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Author: Munawwar Alam Publisher: Commonwealth Secretariat Publication year: 2014


Resource guide on decentralisation and local government

This resource guide provides practical guidance for designing, implementing and evaluating decentralisation reforms and local government practices to ensure they are as effective as possible. It also synthesises and presents current debates on the impact of decentralisation and local government on poverty reduction, service delivery and conflict as well as providing links to cutting-edge research and recent case studies.

Author: Zoe Scott and Munawwar Alam Publisher: Commonwealth Secretariat Publication year: 2011


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