Habitat III: Shaping The New World Development Agenda

Berlin, April 2015

Speaker           : Prof. Günter Meinert (GIZ Senior Urban Expert)

Slums in Bandung

Part I : Background of Habitat III

  • According to criticism from the international community, the MDGs 2015 (Millenium Development Goals- the existing global goals) are considered to be too global south oriented streamed on poverty alleviation and the global south development assignments. United Nation General Assembly established a working group of experts from 17 UN countries to extract the concept of post-2015 development goals. Meanwhile, almost at the same time, they also prepare Habitat III for 2016, as implementation conference to discuss post-2015 agendas into more technical objectives for worldwide cities.
  • Two sides of the coin: The discourse about global south and global north now turn in complexity. The depiction usually reflects how urbanism works in a different context of developing stages, but sometimes both of north-south is facing a typical problem, such as segregation and affordable housing. Typically, the global south is usually dealing with serious rapid growths of population and slum dwellers. On the other hand, the global north is getting intense to use a lot of energy consumption due to lifestyle and economic interest. We also now figure out that the emerging global south economies start to face a serious dilemma in dealing with green-house gas (GHG) reduction from their industries, and private cars oriented lifestyle. Hence, the world now needs further strategies in order to find more suitable collaborative partnerships between the global north and global south towards balancing sustainable development in both sides.
  • Planetary boundaries: Obviously, according to many scientific inventions, human beings have contributed to the disturbance of nitrogen, ocean thermal, biodiversity reduction, and land system change. Thus, the 2˚ celsius threshold was introduced as the pressure for global development, and it need to apply trough policy, planning, and technical measures in the countries until urban level.
  • New Urban Agenda: United Nations started to introduce the new concept of the urban agenda, where planning should tackle economically, socially, and environmentally based on a local solution. Hence, the Habitat III will try to emphasize global urban governance and how vital to combating climate change, alleviate poverty, and supporting sustainable development.

Part II: Habitat III Objectives

  • There are three main objectives of this conference:
    • Secured and renewed political commitment for sustainable urban development
    • To address, and identify every emergence urban challenges
    • Asses accomplishment to more specify dates or year
  • The Habitat III is set to achieve several outcomes; 1) political coherence to introduce sets of measures in policy that applied at the urban level; 2) Mobilize international government to be aware of new urban agendas; 3)gaining results in member state; and 4) initiate implementation mechanisms in finance, capacity development, and internal cooperation.
  • Habitat III is expected to produce several outputs: 1) finance, capacity development among cities, and internal cooperation; 2) Institutional setup for the implementation; and 3) report document

 Part III: Challenges

The diversity of the participant’s knowledge, and difference in planning regime could imply the discussion into more dubious circumstances. Therefore, The Habitat III’s working groups realize that the conference’s participants need intensive preparation, and common understanding before they involve in D-day. The urban actors, especially from the global south is expected to enrich the discourse and share their ideas at the Habitat III conference working towards a more balanced agenda from global north and south.

  • In fact, however, Habitat III draft agendas have not yet been recognized by all city mayors, even Berlin’s mayor. Therefore, there would be 3rd preparatory conference in the early of 2015 in Jakarta, Indonesia that aims to strengthening certain agenda for Habitat III, sounding the issue, and trigger each government‘s

Noted by Achmad Faris Saffan Sunarya

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