RISE Africa

brings together thinkers, doers and enablers from across the continent and the world to inspire action for sustainable cities. The platform curates monthly engagements, photographic competitions, thought pieces and networking events, taking a whole-of-society approach to imagining African urban futures. 

At the heart of RISE Africa is an annual event convened around Africa Day and focused on critically and enthusiastically demonstrating how to make our urban imaginaries real – and how to forge ideas into action.

Collaborative art and creative expression are central threads that hold our deliberations together. Expressing and celebrating multiple perspectives, cultures, visions and actions is vital for making inclusive and vibrant cities, that resonate as African.


Explore RISE Africa’s many themes and catch up on past monthly events by browsing previous digests or watching the recordings.


Explore the 2021/2022 RISE Africa discussion series in which African thought-leaders share analysis, reflection and proposition about the future of our cities – a new one is released monthly.


Watch short video provocations by urban practitioners across the continent.

Annual photo competition

What do African cities actually look like? What should they look like? How can photography and imagery support new imaginaries, render unseen challenges visible, identify opportunities and guide decision making?
Our annual photo competitions seek to crowdsource images to spark answers to these questions…

Action Festival

The RISE Africa Action Festival is the Africa Day event for cities. This annual event aims to inspire impactful actions for enhanced sustainability and resilience in Africa’s urban areas. Register for RISE Africa 2022 Action Festival and visit the programme page to register for sessions, or view past festivals.

ACE Africa

The Accelerating Circular Economy in Africa programme is incubating small businesses and entrepreneurs who seek to contribute to circular economy transitions. At the same time, RISE Africa is convening a Learning and Action Festival for building circular economy understanding and for connecting urban circular economy practitioners.

RISE Africa is convened by ICLEI Africa

ICLEI Africa developed RISE Africa to support its 198 member cities, sub-national and local governments on their sustainability journey.

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Our partners