Discussion series

African cities are rapidly changing and urbanising, and many cities are seeking sustainable paths of growth and development. The conundrum remains in finding appropriate solutions to complex urban environments, where uncertainty is rampant and deep-rooted challenges underscored by climate change, structural inequality and social injustice exist. In finding new pathways to sustainable and just transitions for African cities, a shift in thought and knowledge production is necessary to provide inspiration and guidance for those shaping our cities. Most importantly, we need ideas which galvanise action, share lessons and encourage experimentation and new ways of doing and being in our cities.

Discussion series 2021/2022

The RISE Africa Discussion Series comprises of a number of thought-pieces that aim to provide a horizontal view (looking into the next 10-20 years) of key ideas which are vital to shaping sustainable African cities, with a specific focus on the UN Decade of Action towards attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.

These thought pieces are not intended to be specific to a single context, but rather to provide guidance that can be useful in many African urban contexts and provide a basis for further discourse and to stimulate further debate and discussion.

Each of these offer impressions about a specific topic of sustainability or a way of thinking, and muse about the following questions or chart a different course entirely:

● What is the current state of play for the specific theme
● Who are the people, civil society groups and key institutions that we need to engage with? What are the roles of these different groups?
● How and with whom do we take this discourse forward and turn it into implementable action for change on the ground in the decade ahead?
● What do we need more knowledge about, and what is the most effective/appropriate way to obtain and mobilise this knowledge?
● What actions do we need to take immediately and in the very near future?

Each thought piece is framed by the core orientation of RISE Africa, which is about AFRICA, ACTION, INNOVATION, FUTURE, and URBAN.

Read the RISE Africa thought pieces by theme below

Youth mobilities and belonging in and out of a Kenyan urban ‘hood’
By Edward Kahuthia Murimi & Tatiana Adeline Thieme

Development on the edge: Can we bring affordability and social capital to the core of developing African cities?
By Heba Allah Essam E. Khalil, PhD

Connecting compact communities to the city: could the 15-minute city concept be useful in Lagos?
By Olamide Udoma-Ejorh, Director at Lagos Urban Development Initiative (LUDI)

Tackling SDG localisation sideways in Africa’s cities
By Silvia Croese and Nachi Majoe

Playing in the Gap: Re-Futuring African Cities
By Geci Karuri-Sebina and Thiresh Govender

How research, teaching and learning in tertiary institutions can drive improved local governance in South Africa
By Kobie Brand, Paul Currie & Meggan Spires

Building Climate Resilient African Cities – a conversation
By Pato Kelesitse

Using media to communicate climate change to local communities: A case of Kenyan community radio stations
By Carine Buma and Diana Njeru

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About 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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