SDI Launches Know Your City Campaign at World Urban Forum 7

by James Tayler

Know Your City Campaign

SDI is getting ready for the seventh World Urban Forum (WUF) to be held in Medellin, Colombia from 5 – 11 April 2014.

As the largest and most widely attended conference on cities, World Urban Forum presents an excellent opportunity for SDI affiliates to present their work at the global scale, and network with key urban stakeholders – local and national governments, city officials, community organisations, international development organisations, academia, and more – in order to catalyse work on the ground. 

SDI will host a booth in the Exhibition Hall of the Plaza Mayor, where visitors are welcome to drop by to learn about our activities and catch up with delegations from SDI affiliates. 

This year, SDI will focus its WUF activities on our Know Your City Campaign, aimed at the development of protocols for cities to map slums across the city. Every household, every neighborhood and every informal settlement has to be counted. There can be no inclusive or equitable development planning and investment, nor effective city governance if the increasing majority of the residents of informal settlements remain unaccounted for. The campaign will be officially launched at our networking event, “Know Your City: Creating Resilient and Equitable Cities through Partnerships for Community-Collected Data,” on Tuesday 8 April at 16:30 in the Yellow Pavilion, Room 11. 

SDI has demonstrated that cities have to work with urban poor communities to collect baseline data and maps of all informal settlements in the city. This is the beginning of forming a relationship with those who have remained invisible in city planning in the past.

Our campaign seeks to invite communities of the urban poor, NGOs, academics, and city mayors and administrators to join this campaign. We urge national governments, bilateral agencies, multilateral organizations, and academics, to finance and support this process. 

SDI’s experience shows that slum mapping has many immediate and long-term benefits. 

Firstly, it helps settlements to develop a collective understanding. When communities visit each other while collecting information, settlements begin to network. Most of SDI federations have emerged through such exercises. 

Secondly, sustainable development for cities needs to makes sure that information about all living in the city has to be collected, and updated. Invariably, cities list only half the settlements. This leads to skewed investments; increased difference between amenities and services provision and more difficulty in catching up to provide all these services.

Thirdly, in times of increased awareness of city responsibility to vulnerability with man-made and climatic disasters, reaching those most vulnerable and often least documented is always a problem for city administrations. 

Helping the poor to create a voice, a collective identity, and possibilities to participate in transformation and change is an integral aspect of what we all seek in the future of cities.

A list of the events SDI is hosting and participating in is provided below. In addition, you can download our official WUF schedule and programme of events here.  


List of SDI Events at WUF 7:

Monday 7 April 

10:00 – 11:30 

“Putting Poor People at the Centre of Strategies for Urban Development,” (Next City and SDI)

Speakers: Patrick Maghebula (South Africa), Irene Karanja and Joseph Muturi (Kenya), Sarah Nandudu (Uganda)

Venue: USA Pavilion, Innovative Americas Booth 


Tuesday 8 April

8:00 – 11:30 

Civil Society Roundtable 

Speakers: Rose Molokoane (South Africa), other speakers TBC 

Venue: TBC 


12:15 – 13:15 

“The Know Your City Project: Building Inclusive Cities through Partnerships beteween Local Government and Slum Dwellers in Zambia and Burkina Faso,” (UCLG-A and SDI)

Speakers: SDI: Regina Chikoka and Nelson Ncube (Zambia); Other: Jean-Pierre Elong Mbassi (UCLGA), Hon. Daniel Chisenga (Mayor of Lusaka), Lusaka City Council Member (TBC); Moderator: Charlton Ziervogel (South Africa)

Venue: City Changer Room 


14:00 – 16:00 

“How to Enable Urban Innovation – Fast, at broad scale, and equitable?,” (Ministry of Economic Development, Germany)

Speakers: Farouk Braimah (Ghana), other speakers TBC 

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 16 


“Gender, Asset Building, and Just Cities,” (The Ford Foundation) 

Speakers: SDI: Beth Chitekwe-Biti (Zimbabwe); Other: Sonia Dias (WIEGO), Huraera Jabeen (BRAC), Cath McIlwaine (Queen Mary’s University of London), Caren Levy (DPU London); Moderator: Caroline Moser (Ford Foundation)

Venue: Yellow Pavilion, Room 6


“Leaving No One Behind: How can we better monitor progress in ‘slum’ areas?” (Overseas Development Institute) 

Speakers: Joseph Muturi (Kenay), other speakers TBC 

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 23


16:30 – 18:30

“Know Your City: Creating Resilient and Equitable Cities through Partnerships for Community-Collected Data,” (SDI) 

Speakers: SDI: Catherine Sekai (Zimbabwe), Jack Makau, and Irene Karanja (Kenya); Other: Anaclaudia Rossbach (Cities Alliance), Jean-Pierre Elong Mbassi (UCLG-A);  Moderator: Rose Molokoane (South Africa)

Venue: Yellow Pavilion, Room 11 


“Scaling Up Informal Settlement Upgrading & Prevention through National Housing Policies and Programmatic Approaches: Lessons Learned from 12 Countries,” (Ministry of Works and Housing of Ghana)

Speakers: Farouk Braimah (Ghana), other speakers TBC

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 22 


Wednesday 9 April 

 14:00  – 16:00 

“Towards a New Urban Paradigm: The Future We Want, The City We Need,” (World Urban Campaign Special Session)

Speakers: SDI: Rose Molokoane (South Africa); Other: Joan Clos (UN Habitat), Nicholas You (WUC), Eugene Birch (WUC), Bert Smolders (ARCADIS & UPP), Shipra Narang Suri (ISOCARP), Janice Peterson (Huairou Commission), Lorenzo Casullo (Youth Advisory Board), Jean-Paul Huchon (FMDV), UCLG Representative (TBC), Anibel Gaviria Correa (Mayor of Medellin), Peter Gotz (Global Parlimentarians on Habitat)

Venue: Gran Salon, Room G5, Plaza Mayor 


“Planning Differently: Community Based Slum Upgrading Studios,” (Association of African Planning Schools and SDI)

Speakers: SDI: Beth Chitekwe-Biti (Zimbabwe), Rosalinda Hendricks (Namibia); Other: Nancy Odendaal (AAPS), Hon. James Chiyangwa (City of Harare); Moderator: Jack Makau (SDI)

Venue: Yellow Pavilion, Room 12 


“Future of Places: Public Spaces in Favelas and Slums,” (Future of Places and SDI)

Speakers: SDI: Farouk Braimah (Ghana), Maria Eugenia Torrico (Bolivia); Other: Hon. Ibrahim Baidoo (Mayor of Ashaiman, Ghana), Elin Andersdotter Fabre (Ax:son Johnson Foundation), Mary Jane Ortega (ICLEI), Andres Borthagaray (City on the Move Institute) 

Venue: City Changer Room B


“Citywide Slum Upgrading Programs: Taking stock of practices, outcomes, and innovations in scaled-up approaches to integrate slums into the formal city,” (FAU / UFRJ) 

Speakers: Muhammed Lutwamma and Edris Lubega (Uganda), other speakers TBC 

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 17 


Thursday 10 April 

8:30 – 11:30 

“Basic Services: Local Businesses for Equitable Cities,” (WUF Dialogue 3) 

Speakers: SDI: Patrick Maghebula (South Africa); Other: Juan Esteban Calle Restrepo (Public Enterprises Medellin), Didas Massaburi (Mayor of Dar es Salaam), Joachim Prey (GIZ), Mahendra Subba (Ministry of Urban Development, Nepal), Sarah Rosen Wartell (Urban Institute); Moderator: Mathieu Lefevre (New Cities Foundation) 

Venue: TBC 


“The Politics of Sanitation: Strategies to Achieve Scale,” (International Institute for Environment & Development and SDI)

Speakers:  Beth Chitekwe-Biti, Catherine Sekai, and Sheila Magara (Zimbabwe); Nelson Ncube, Regina Chikoka, and Joyce Lungu (Zambia); Tim Ndezi, Khadija Kigi, and Felistas Komba (Tanzania); Cynthia Phiri and Mphatso Njunga (Malawi); Moderator: Diana Mitlin (IIED)

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 17


“Strong Local Government for Development through Partnerships in Ghana, South Africa & Uganda,” (UNDP and SDI)

Speakers:  SDI: Rose Molokoane (South Africa), Muhammed Lutwamma (Uganda), Farouk Braimah (Ghana); Other: Magdy Martinez-Soliman, (UNDP), Patrick Keuleers, (UNDP), Hon. Ibrahim Baidoo (Mayor of Ashaiman, Ghana), Mr. Kibuuka Patrick Musoke (Kampala Capital City Authority, Uganda); Moderator: Kodjo Mensah-Abrampa, (UNDP)

Venue: One UN Room 


“How Can STDM & Technological Tools Support Community Development, Dialogue & Participatory Mapping?” (Habitat for Humanity International)

Speakers: SDI: Jack Makau (Kenya), Sonia Fadrigo (Philippines), Sarah Nadudu (Uganda); Other: Brenda Perez Castro (Habitat for Humanity Colombia), Escarlem Rodriguez (Bolivia), Somsook Boonyabancha (Asian Coalition for Housing Rights)

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 15 


13:00 – 14:00 

“Informal Settlement Profiling – A first step in developing slum upgrading plans: The Zimbabwean case,” (Penn Institute for Urban Research)

Speakers: Beth Chitekwe-Biti (Zimbabwe)

Venue: Penn IUR Exhibition Stand (30)


14:00 – 16:00

Habitat University Initiative Universities Roundtable 

Speakers: SDI: Irene Karanja (Kenya); Other: Sahar Attia (Cairo University), Mario R. Delos Reyes (Univ. of Philippies), Ana Falu (National University of Argentina), Shuaib Lwasa (Makerere University, Uganda), Michelle Mycoo (Univ. of West Indies), Hans Skotte (Norwegian University of Science & Technology), Bruce Shiftel (Georgia Institute of Technology); Moderator: Michael Cohen (The New School, New York City) 

Venue: TBC 


17:00 – 18:30 

“Citizens & the City Working Together,” (Cities Alliance with SDI & WIEGO)

Speakers: Sonia Fadrigo (Philippines), Catherine Sekai (Zimbabwe), Edriss Lubega (Uganda)

Venue: Cities Alliance Exhibition Stand (76) 


Friday 11 April 

14:00 – 16:00

“Smart Cities from the Bottom Up,” (Santa Fe Institute and SDI)

Speakers: SDI: Marlene Don and Charlton Ziervogel (South Africa), Edriss Lubega (Uganda); Other: Luis Bettencourt (Santa Fe Institute); Moderator: Beth Chitekwe-Biti (Zimbabwe)

Venue: Red Pavilion, Room 22