Urban SDG Targets and Indicators Meeting: London 22nd – 24th August, 2014

Goal 11 : Make Cities and Human Settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

ContextAbout the MeetingAgendaBios

After 18 months of deliberation, the UN Open Working Group (OWG) closed in New York on 19th June 2014 by proposing a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be presented to the UN General Assembly in September 2014.

A sustained global campaign for an urban SDG supported by over 200 cities, major urban networks and institutions in September 2013 played a major role in the passage of SDG 11: Make Cities and Human Settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (for details see the attached OWG document).

This is a major achievement for the global urban community. But an unfinished agenda needs to be closed: a reframing of the current Targets and Indicators associated with the urban SDG and up to ten other related SDGs to help build synergy between them, enhance their ’scientific’ credibility operationalisability at city, regional and national levels – with a wider range of stakeholders, who were not fully present in the OWG intergovernmental negotiations.

To have an impact on this rapidly evolving process, this needs to be accomplished before the UN General Assembly and Habitat III PrepCom in New York in September 2014.

This three day high-level expert group meeting at Royal Holloway, London from 22-24th August 2014, is to deliberate with members of the #urbanSDG Campaign, leading scientists and policy makers on these questions. This conclave brings together over 30 participants from across the globe representing major urban organisations, institutions and movements; cities and global thought and practice leaders working on the SDGs.

The consultation will attempt to review the current status of the SDGs, specifically review the debates on and current articulation of Goal 11/#urban SDG; explore the potential dynamics and process of clearance and implementation of the SDGs; review the perspectives of major urban institutions on these questions; explore city-level SDG formulation and implementation; finally collectively attempt to reframe Goal 11 targets and indicators and ‘urbanise’ the targets and indicators of other SDGs.

The goals of the consultation are to:

  1. Provide an opportunity for an update and dialogue between key #urbanSDG Campaign constituents and other stakeholders
  2. Draft a short 2-pager reframing of OWG Goal 11 Targets and Indicators for the Mayors meeting in September
  3. Help draft a longer document (6-10 pages) that presents a more detailed articulation of the Targets and Indicators for Goal 11 and other relevant SDGs
  4. Review a potential #urbanSDG publication that presents 5-6 city cases using this broad framework

Four background documents:

  1. The full text of the approved OWG 13th session text
  2. SDSN’s report on Indicators and a Monitoring Framework for Sustainable Development Goals
  3. The original SDSN urban SDG framing paper that outlined three targets
  4. A series of Communitas background papers

A recent set of blog posts that outline some of the context are at:


21st August 2014 | Thursday
From To Activities
15:00 onwards Arrivals
20:00 21:30 Supper & Coordinating Group meeting
21:30 onwards Post-Supper Catch-up on content


22nd August 2014 | Friday
From To Activities Suggested Lead Presenters Chair
10:00 10:30 Registration and Arrivals
10:30 11:00 Welcome by Mistra
11:00 11:15 Introductions Sue Parnell, Thomas Elmquist David Simon
11:15 11:45 SDGs and Goal 11 Framing Aromar Revi, Jeffrey Sachs (from 11.30-11.45)
11:45 12:00 Next Steps on the SDGs Guido Schmidt (via Skype), Jessica Espey (via Skype)
12:00 12:10 Next Steps on the SDG indicators Cynthia Rosenzweig, William Solecki
12:10 12:25 UN Habitat Reflections and links to Habitat III Andrew Rudd, Raf Tuts (tbc Skype)
12:25 13:10 Campaign Partners and Institutional Reflections
: Communitas Maruxa Cardama David Satterthwaithe
: UCLG Edgardo Bilsky
: ICLEI Yunus Arikhan
: C40 Sarah Potts (tbc)
: Cities Alliance William Cobbbet (Skype tbc), Federico Silva
13:10 14:00 Lunch
14:00 14:40 Campaign Partners and Institutional Reflections
: SDI David Satterthwaithe Thomas Elmquist
: WEIGO Caroline Skinner
: ITDP Michael Replogle
: World Urban Campaign Eugene Birch
14:40 15:00 Reflections on the MDGs Michael Cohen, David Satterthwaithe
15:00 16:30 Reflections on Proposed OWG SDGs
Poverty and Livelihoods (Caroline Skinner, David Satterthwaite)
Health (Andrew Haines tbc)
Education(Chandrika Bahadur)
Gender (Caren Levy)
Water & Sanitation (Aromar Revi)
Energy (Jessica Algehed, Zarina Patel)
Infrastructure (Shagun Mehrotra)
Environment ( Thomas Elmquist)
Climate (Karen Seto)
Human Rights (Sarah Bradshaw)
Aromar Revi
16:30 16:45 Coffee/Tea Break
16:45 18:00 Refections on SDGs at City level
: Framing William Solecki Eugene Birch
: Durban Debra Roberts
: Bangalore Garima Jain
: New York William Solecki
: Accra Martin Oteng-Ababio
: Rio Carolina Jaguaribe
: US experience Eugene Birch
: Operationalising the SDGs Peter Head
18:00 18:30 Coordinating group meeting
19:00 21:00 Supper
21:00 22:00 Post-Supper Catch-up on content


23rd August 2014 | Saturday
From To Activities Suggested Lead Presenters Chair
9:00 9:15 Framing Maruxa Cardama, Debra Roberts & Aromar Revi
11:15 Working Groups on Goal 11 Reframing Targets & Indicators
: WG1 – Target 1 – Housing and basic Services
: WG2 – Target 2 – Sustainable Transport
: WG3 – Target 3 – Participatory Planning
: WG4 – Target 4 – Cultural and Natural Heritage
: WG5 – Target 5 – Disasters
: WG6 – Target 6 – Environment
: WG7 – Target 7 – Public Spaces
11:15 11:30 Coffee/Tea Break
11:30 13:00 Goal 11 Working Groups Continue
13:00 14:00 Lunch
14:00 14:15 Framing Andrew Haines, Chandrika Bahadur & David Satterthwaithe
14:00 16:15 Urbanising Other SDGs
: WG1 – Water and Infrastructure
: WG2 – Education & Health
: WG3 – Climate and Energy
: WG4 – Poverty and Gender
16:15 16:30 Tea/Coffee
16:30 18:00 Reporting Back All groups Sue Parnell
18:00 18:30 Coordinating group meeting
19:00 21:00 Supper
21:00 onwards Redrafting Targets and Indicators


24th August 2014 | Sunday
From To Activities Suggested Lead Presenters Chair
9:00 11:00 Closing session (details tbc) tbc Aromar Revi
11:30 11:45 Tea Break and Early Departures
11:45 13:00 Summary Documentation and Follow up Actions David Simon
1300 14:00 Lunch
14:00 onwards Final Departures
Andrew Haines: Andrew Haines is a Professor of Public Health and Primary Care with a joint appointment in the Dept of Social and Environmental Health Research and in the Dept of Population Health. He was previously Director (originally Dean) of LSHTM for nearly 10 years up to October 2010, having previously been Professor of Primary Health Care at UCL between 1987-2000. He worked part-time as a general practitioner in North London for many years. He has been a member of a number of major international and national committees including the MRC Global Health Group ( chair) and the MRC Strategy Group. He was formerly chair of the Universities UK Health and Social Care Policy Committee and a member of the WHO Advisory Committee on Health Research. He was a member of Working Group 2 of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for the second and third assessment reports and review editor of the health chapter fifth report. He chaired the Scientific Advisory Panel for the 2013 WHO World Health Report on Research for Universal Health Coverage. He sits on a number of other national and international committees.  andrew

Andrew Rudd: Andrew Rudd is the Urban Environment Officer in the Urban Planning and Design Branch of UN-Habitat. He serves as focal point for the agency’s green economy, cities and biodiversity and urban agriculture initiatives, and has represented UN-Habitat in the Environmental Management Group’s IMG on the Green Economy, the International Resource Panel’s Cities Working Group, the Global Partnership on Cities and Biodiversity and the Task Forces for the City Biodiversity Index and Outlook. Mr Rudd managed the Urban Patterns for a Green Economy quick guides series, which will be launched at Rio+20. At UN-Habitat he also coordinated a photographic investigation of rapidly-growing cities and the agency’s participation in the Shanghai World Expo 2010. Previously Mr Rudd worked as an architect in New York on projects related to transport master planning and retail concept design. He is a contributing author of the upcoming City Biodiversity Outlook (2012), Working towards a Balanced and Inclusive Green Economy (2011), UN-Habitat’s State of the World’s Cities Report 2010: Bridging the Urban Divide and the LSE Cities Programme’s Housing and the City (2007). Mr Rudd received a BA in Architecture from Yale University and an MSc in City Design and Social Science from LSE.  andrudd

Ania Rok: Ania Rok (Project Officer Governance & Social Innovation, ICLEI European Secretariat) is a sociologist and an expert in local sustainability processes. Her work focuses on building bridges between the local government community and other actors, such as international actors, research organizations and grassroots sustainability initiatives. She was actively involved in the local government community preparatory process for the Rio+20 Conference, as a co-author of the Local Sustainability 2012. Taking stock and moving forward. Global Review (ICLEI 2012), and is co-facilitating ICLEI’s engagement with the SDG process.Ania is currently involved as a knowledge brokerage expert and analyst in projects on transition management, citizen participation and co-creation, social innovation, resource efficiency and European and global frameworks for local sustainability processes.  aniarok

Aromar Revi: Aromar Revi is the Director of the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) – India’s first prospective National University for Research and Innovation to address challenges of urbanisation through an integrated programme of education, research, consulting and advisory services. He has been a senior advisor to various ministries of the Government of India, consulted with a wide range of UN, multilateral, bilateral development and private sector institutions and works on economic, environmental and social change at global, regional and urban scales. He is also one of South Asia’s leading disaster mitigation and management experts and has led emergency teams to assess, plan and execute recovery and rehabilitation programmes for ten major earthquake, cyclone, surge and flood events affecting over five million people. Aromar is considered a leading expert on Global Environmental Change especially on Climate Change adaptation and mitigation. He is one of the Coordinating Lead Authors for the Urban Areas section of the IPCC 5th Assessment report (2014). He also serves as a member of the Global Advisory Board for the Global Assessment of Risk report (2011).  arevi

Caren Levy: Caren Levy is the director, of the Development Planning Unit at the University College of London. She is an urban development planner working on planning, community-led development and governance, with a focus on housing, infrastructure and transport in urban areas in the global South. She has a special interest in the institutionalization of social justice in policy and planning, particularly related to the cross-cutting issues of gender, diversity and environment. In these fields, she has 25 years experience of teaching, research, training and consultancy in mainstreaming social justice in organizational development, and exploring innovatory approaches to planning methodology, planning education and capacity building. She works both in London and abroad with communities, governments and international organizations, including UN Habitat, ILO, EU, DFID, SDC, SIDA. Country experience includes Egypt, Namibia, India, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Chile, Colombia and Brazil.  carenlevy

Carlos Francisco C.: A medical doctor and epidemiologist (MD-PhD) by training, Dr Carlos Dora has a distinguished career in public health and environmental issues. At WHO, he is coordinator of the Unit “Interventions for Healthy Environments” which is part of the Department of Public Health and Environment. In this capacity, he has spearheaded efforts to bring together the various types of Health Impact Assessment (HIA) at the global level, in particular by organising the April 2010 conference in Geneva, which focused on HIA in Cities and HIA in Extractive Industries. Dr Dora works on the interface between knowledge and practice. At WHO, he previously developed a programme on the environmental health implications of transport policies, and before that he worked on environmental health problems in Eastern Europe. He has also served as a senior policy analyst at the WHO Director General’s office. Before joining WHO, he worked in environmental epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Before that, he worked in internal medicine, in post-graduate medical training and in the organization of local preventive and health care services in Brazil and the United Kingdom.  carlos

Caroline Skinner: Caroline Skinner is Urban Policies Programme Director for the global action-research-policy network Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO) and a Senior Researcher at the African Centre for Cities (ACC) at the University of Cape Town. For over 15 years, Skinner’s work has interrogated the nature of the informal economy with a focus on informing livelihood-centred policy and planning responses. She has published widely on the topic. She has been involved in policy and advocacy work at a local, provincial, national and international levels. Since 2009 she has been managing the research component of the Gates Foundation funded global project – Inclusive Cities. The project is a consortium of largely membership based organizations of the working poor, that aims through organizing and policy advocacy to ensure that urban informal workers needs are heard within urban planning processes. Among other responsibilities, she has overseen the publishing of nearly 100 publications on the informal economy (see http://wiego.org/publications-resources).  caroline

Chandrika Bahadur: Chandrika Bahadur is Director for Education Initiatives at the SDSN, based in New Delhi. Previously she was a consultant to the Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore. From 2011-2012, she worked with Columbia University, helping the Government of Jordan in designing its poverty reduction strategies. From 2008-2011, she was advisor to the Chairman and Managing Director at Reliance Industries. Her primary responsibility was to help in the setting up of Reliance Foundation, a Rs. 1000 crores non-profit philanthropic foundation focusing on areas of education, health, rural development, and urban renewal. In this role, she helped develop an overall strategic framework for the Foundation including its core areas of work, organizational structure, budgets and partnerships.  chandrika

Chikako Takase: Chikako Takase assumed the position of Director of UNCRD in February 2012, after serving as Acting Director since March 2011. Prior to coming to UNCRD, she served as Deputy Chief of the Policy Coordination Branch, Office for ECOSOC Support and Coordination, Department of Economic and Social Affairs at the United Nations (UN DESA). She began her career at the UN in 1984, after serving as Associate Expert Officer in Jakarta for UNIDO. She first worked for the Projections and Perspective Studies Branch, Department of International Economic and Social Affairs, where she was in charge of medium-term forecasting, and at the Macroeconomic and Social Policy Analysis Division, Department of Economic and Social Information and Policy Analysis, where she was involved in monitoring developed country economies and in drafting the Department’s flagship annual publication, World Economic Survey. She later worked for the Division for Sustainable Development (DSD), Department of Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development, during which time she had an opportunity to work for the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity from 1996-1999. While at DSD, she was involved in the preparation as well as organization of the World Summit on Sustainable Development, held in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002. At DSD, her work mainly focused on changing consumption and production patterns. She holds B.A. in Liberal Arts (Economics) from International Christian University, Japan, and M.A. in Development Economics from the University of Sussex, UK.  chikako

Cynthia Rosenzweig: Cynthia Rosenzweig is a Senior Research Scientist at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, where she heads the Climate Impacts Group. She is Co-Chair of the New York City Panel on Climate Change, a body of experts convened by the mayor to advise the city on adaptation for its critical infrastructure. She co-led the Metropolitan East Coast Regional Assessment of the U.S. National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change, sponsored by the U.S. Global Change Research Program. She was a Coordinating Lead Author of the IPCC Working Group II Fourth Assessment Report. She is Co-Director of the Urban Climate Change Research Network (UCCRN) and Co-Editor of the First UCCRN Assessment Report on Climate Change and Cities (ARC3), the first-ever global, interdisciplinary, cross-regional, science-based assessment to address climate risks, adaptation, mitigation, and policy mechanisms relevant to cities. She is the founder of AgMIP, a major international collaborative effort to assess the state of global agricultural modeling, understand climate impacts on the agricultural sector, and enhance adaptation capacity, as it pertains to food security, in developing and developed countries. She was named as one of “Nature’s 10: Ten People Who Mattered in 2012” by the science journal Nature. A recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, she joins impact models with climate models to project future outcomes of both land-based and urban systems under altered climate conditions. She is a Professor at Barnard College and a Senior Research Scientist at the Earth Institute at Columbia University. cynthia

David Satterthwaithe: David Satterthwaite is a Senior Fellow at the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) and editor of the international journal Environment and Urbanization. He is also visiting Professor at the Development Planning Unit, University College London.Most of his work has been on poverty reduction in urban areas in Africa, Asia and Latin America, undertaken with local teams. He has written and edited various books on urban issues, including Squatter Citizen (with Jorge E. Hardoy) and Environmental Problems in an Urbanizing World (with Jorge E. Hardoy and Diana Mitlin). He also co-authored two books recently published by Routledge on urban poverty with Diana Mitlin. He has a particular interest in how climate change can or will add to the stresses and shocks faced by low-income urban dwellers. He contributed to the IPCC’s Third and Fourth Assessments and was a coordinating lead author in the Fifth Assessment. He was awarded the Volvo Environment Prize in 2004.  satterwaite

David Simon: David Simonresearch encompasses principally the interface between development and the environment, in the context of sustainability and global environmental/climate change but also aspects of political geography and critical geopolitics, urbanisation and transport policy. He has a keen interest in theoretical, applied and policy arenas, underpinned by the belief that real progress lies in a far closer integration across them than is generally the case. He has been at the leading edge of debates about the nature of ‘development’ and the exploration of the utility of so-called ‘post-structuralist’ perspectives such as postmodernism, postcolonialism and post-traditionalism, with application to various empirical contexts. This work has been presented at international conferences, and published especially in leading international outlets like Geografiska Annaler(1997), Environment and Planning D: Society and Space (1998), my co-edited book, Development as Theory and Practice (1999); the edited volume, Towards a new regional and local development research agenda (2002); Development in Practice (2003) and in Progress in Development Studies (2003).  davidsimon

Debra Roberts: Debra Roberts established and heads the Environmental Planning and Climate Protection Department of eThekwini Municipality (Durban, South Africa). Her key responsibilities in this post include: overseeing the planning and protection of the city’s biodiversity and natural resource base; directing and developing the municipality’s Climate Protection Programme; and ensuring that biodiversity and climate change considerations influence all aspects of planning and development in the city. Dr. Roberts is currently a lead author of Chapter 8 (Urban Areas) and a contributing author to Chapter 12 (Africa) of Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report, due for release in 2014. She is also a member of the South African climate negotiating team. She sits on various international advisory bodies focused on climate change issues in cities (e.g. the Rockefeller Foundation’s Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network). In addition she acted as vice-chair and then chair of UN-Habitat’s HS-NET Advisory Board which oversaw the production of the 2011 “Cities and Climate Change” Global Report. Most recently she has been appointed as one of the 60 international experts convened under Royal Decree by the King of Bhutan to work on the preparation of “The New Development Paradigm Report” which will be submitted to the United Nations General Assembly in 2014. Dr Roberts will co-chair the Ecological Sustainability Working Group of the “New Development Paradigm” International Expert Working Group. Dr. Roberts has written widely in the fields of urban open space planning, environmental management and urban climate protection and has received a number of awards for her work.  debra

Edgardo Bilsky: Edgardo Bilsky is the director of programs and research at United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG, headquarters in Barcelona, Spain) and coordinates UCLG’s trienial flagship report, the Global Report on Local Democracy and Decentralization (GOLD). Born in Argentina, he has a Masters in History from the University of Paris VII and from the High Level School of Social Sciences (EHESS) in Paris. He joined UCLG at its foundation as a global organization in 2004, having been director for Latin America, since 1990, at the World Federation of United Cities, one of UCLG’s two founding organizations. In the 90’s, he led different projects on support to decentralization and local development in Central America (Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Salvador) and in Dominican Republic (for the European Commission). Prior to this in the 80’s, he conducted research and taught at the University of Paris and Buenos Aires (Argentina).

Eugene Birch: Eugénie L. Birch FAICP, RTPI (hon), is the Nussdorf Professor of Urban Research, Department of City and Regional Planning, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania. She is the founding co-director of the Penn Institute for Urban Research, dedicated to integrative research and instruction in sustainable urban development. She is co-editor of Penn Press’s The City in the 21st Century series that has published more than twenty volumes since 2005. Dr. Birch has served in many leadership positions including editor, Journal of the American Planning Association; chair, Planning Accreditation Board; president, Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning, Society for American City and Regional Planning History and the International Planning History Society. She has received several awards: the Lawrence C. Gerkens Award in Planning History, Jay Chatterjee Award, Margarita McCoy Award and Distinguished Educator Award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning. Dr. Birch, who lives in New York City, holds a Ph.D and Masters in Urban Planning from Columbia University and an A.B. cum laude in History from Bryn Mawr College  eugenebirch

Federico Silva: Dr. Federico Silva is a Senior Programme Specialist at the Cities Alliance, where he coordinates the Catalytic Fund, one of the partnership’s main business lines, and the corporate Results Framework and Performance System. Prior to joining the Cities Alliance, Dr. Silva worked as a project manager for the international NGO CIVICUS and as a consultant for the Italian Ministry of Finance. He is the author of numerous academic papers on international affairs.

Garima Jain: Garima Jain is a Consultant at the Indian Institute for Human Settlements. Her areas of research include issues of vulnerabilities and risks particularly in urban areas, migration, climate change and multi-dimensional urban poverty.She supports the practice team on urban policy projects. She has led several urban policy projects including those on disaster risk for UNISDR, urban poverty for UNDP and overall urban policy support partnership with Rockefeller Foundation. She is currently involved in developing Comparative City Indicators for the Post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals, particularly those pertaining to Goal 11 on Sustainable Cities and Human Settlements. She also helps build and deliver capacity building programmes for working professionals on various themes including – Integrated Urban Disaster Risk Reduction, Building Resilience against Risk, Urban India & Environmental Sustainability, Data Visualisation and Re-imagining the world-class city. She also contributes to the curriculum building exercise for Quantitative and Empirical Methods, Urban Management and Urban Planning. Garima also assists with the project management of the organisation.She has an extensive experience in planning, research and capacity building. She led design and development projects for sustainable community habitats in Mukteshwar. She has worked with the City of Somerville (Massachusetts) for analysing existing and designing new parking regulations. She was a part of the London Organizing Committee of Olympic Games (2012), where she helped prepare accessibility & inclusion guidelines and led the accessibility management team in the transportation planning projects  garima

Guido Schmidt-Traub: Guido Schmidt-Traub is Executive Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He has served as climate change advisor to the Africa Progress Panel secretariat and was CEO of Paris-based CDC Climat Asset Management, an investment company regulated by the French financial markets regulator. From 2008-2010 Guido was Director and Partner at South Pole Carbon Asset Management in Zurich, a leading developer of greenhouse gas emission projects. Prior to managing the MDG Support Team at UNDP (2006-2008) he served as Policy Advisor and then as Associate Director of the UN Millennium Project in New York, which was tasked with developing a concrete action plan for the world to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Earlier Guido was Partner at IndexIT Scandinavia, a private equity fund for early-stage technology companies, and consultant at McKinsey & Company in Germany. Guido holds an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University (Rhodes Scholar) and a Masters in physical chemistry from the Free University Berlin. He resides in Paris with his family. guido

Ian Short : Ian Short is Chief Executive of the Institute for Sustainability, an independent charity established in 2009 to significantly accelerate the delivery of sustainable cities. The Institute works with a diverse range of partners in the UK and internationally to deliver innovative demonstration projects focussed on systemic solutions for cities and neighbourhoods. Ian is a Governing Board member of the Climate-KIC, an organisation established by the European Commission in 2010 to become Europe’s catalyst for climate change adaptation and mitigation innovation. He is also on the Mayor of London’s Smart London Board, which is leading efforts to utilise digital technology to make London an even better place to live, work and invest.  ianshort

Jessica Algehed: Jessica Algehed (born 1971) is Acting Director for Mistra Urban Futures. She has been working at the centre since 2012. Jessica has a PhD in Industrial Energy Systems from Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg and has a broad experience within energy, climate mitigation and sustainable development. Previous experience include for example working as climate expert and strategist at Region Västra Götaland and building up and heading a cross-disciplinary systems and policy research and innovation group of 25 sustainability experts at SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden. Jessica has written several publications, most of them synthesizing research in order to transfer academic knowledge to policy makers, for example regarding waste management, sustainable consumption and industrial energy systems.  jessicaalgehed

Jessica Espey: Jessica is a Manager for the SDSN. Prior to joining she served as a special adviser on the post-2015 agenda within the Office of the President of Liberia, supporting the work of The High Level Panel of Eminent Persons (of which President Sirleaf was co-chair) and the development of the Common African Position on the Post-2015 Agenda. For three years prior she was a senior researcher for Save the Children UK, who initially supported her work in Liberia on secondment. She has also worked as a researcher at the Overseas Development Institute (ODI). She has particular expertise in the study of inequality and gender discrimination. Jessica holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Modern History from the University of Oxford and a Masters of Sciences in the Political Economy of Development from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Over the past 8 years she has lived and worked in the UK, Liberia, Kenya and Rwanda.  jessica_espey

Jochen Mattern: Jochen Mattern leads the Secretariat of the “Development Partners Working Group on Decentralisation and Local Governance – DeLoG” and is head of the GIZ sectoral programme “Sector Dialogue and Donor Harmonisation, Decentralisation and Local Governance”. He has worked amongst others for GTZ and UNDP in Brazil, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Zimbabwe in the fields of decentralisation, governance, urban / local development. He holds a Master’s degree in Political Science and studied in Paris (Sciences Po) and Leipzig.  jochen

Karen Seto is Professor of Geography and Urbanization at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Prior to joining Yale, she was on the faculty at Stanford University for eight years. Professor Seto’s research is on the human transformation of land and the links between urbanization, global change, and sustainability. She is an expert in urbanization dynamics, forecasting urban growth, and examining the environmental consequences of urban expansion. She has pioneered methods using satellite remote sensing to reconstruct historical patterns of urbanization and to develop projections of future urban expansion. She specializes in China and India, where she has conducted urbanization research for more than fifteen years.  karenseto

Martin Oteng-Ababio: Martin Oteng-Ababio is a Senior Lecturer and Coordinator of the Urban Disaster Risk Reduction Programme, Department of Geography and Resource Development, University of Ghana – Legon. His specialized areas of study include urban environmental management, urban disaster risk reduction, and the problem of informality. Among other topics, he has studied E-waste scavenging as an economic opportunity for youth in Accra. He has written widely on urban issues in Ghana, and is the author/co-author of over 25 articles in refereed journals, as well as 5 book chapters. He is currently working on a book on solid waste management in Ghana. He received his PhD in Geography and Resource Development from the University of Ghana.  martinoteng

Maruxa Cardama: Maruxa co-founded Communitas, a coalition for sustainable cities and regions in the new UN Development Agenda. Earlier she run nrg4SD, an international organisation of subnational governments promoting sustainable communities, and co-facilitated the engagement of subnational and local authorities in the UN Rio +20 Conference. Previously she was Deputy Director at the representation of the South West of England to the EU where she led on the sustainability portfolio for a partnership of regional authorities, academia and the private sector. Before that, she started her career at the EU representation of the Spanish region of Galicia and the EU Committee of the Regions. Besides, Maruxa has worked as Expert on Governance and Public Administration Reform for the Government of Romania and The British Council. She has also lectured in capacity building programmes on EU sustainability policy and funding. In all, Maruxa has 12 years-experience on strategic policy analysis and advocacy, international partnerships, capacity building, and multi-level governance in the field of sustainable development at the international, national and subnational levels. She is currently serving as Co-Chair of the Drafting Committee for the Declaration of the upcoming 65th Annual UN DPI/NGO Conference, which will take place 27-29 in NYC with the title ‘2015 and Beyond: Our Action Agenda’.  maruxa

Michael Replogle: Michael Replogle is Managing Director for Policy and Founder of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, which since 1985 has worked with governments worldwide to bring about sustainable transport solutions that protect the environment and public health while promoting equitable economic development. He helped found the Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), which brings together 88 organizations, including multilateral development banks (MBDs), UN agencies, NGOs, and associations to shape global policy and support implementation of related voluntary commitments. SLoCaT helped foster a $175 billion commitment for more sustainable transport over the next decade from the 8 largest MDBs at Rio+20. In 2013, he was named a non-resident visiting professor at the China Academy of Transportation Sciences in Beijing. He has recently been a consultant to the Asian Development Bank, InterAmerican Development Bank, and Global Environmental Facility on GHG appraisal methods for transportation and he is an advisor to the Climate Bonds Initiative on certification standards for transport sector investments.As Transportation Director for the Environmental Defense Fund from 1992-2009, Replogle shaped development and implementation of U.S. transportation laws and advised governments worldwide on urban planning, transport management and finance, and environmental analysis. He was responsible for comprehensive planning, travel forecasting, and growth management for Montgomery County, Maryland from 1983-92. He earned honors degrees in civil engineering and sociology from the University of Pennsylvania. Bloomberg Business Week in 2011 cited him as one of the world’s leading global experts on transportation.  michaelreplogle

Micheal Cohen: Michael Cohen (Ph.D., University of Chicago) is Professor of International Affairs, Director of the International Affairs Program, and Director of the Observatory on Latin America at The New School University in New York. From 1972 to 1999, he worked at the World Bank and was responsible for much of the urban policy development of the Bank over that period. He has advised many governments and international organizations and worked in 55 countries. He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences Panels on Infrastructure and Urban Dynamics. Since leaving the World Bank in 1999, he has worked extensively with other international organizations and governments in developing countries. He is the author or editor of many books, including most recently, Argentina’s Economic Growth and Recovery: The Economy in a Time of Default (2012), The Global Economic Crisis in Latin America: Impacts and Responses, (2012) Latin America on the Move: The Post Neoliberal Transition, (2007), Argentina in Collapse? : The Americas Debate, (both edited with Margarita Gutman, 2003), Preparing the Urban Future: Global Pressures and Local Forces (ed. with A. Garland, B. Ruble, and J. Tulchin, 1996), The Human Face of the Urban Environment (ed. with I. Serageldin, 1994), and Urban Policy and Economic Development: An Agenda for the 1990s.  michaelcohen

Neal Peirce: Neal Peirce is the founder and editor-in-chief of Citiscope, a non-profit website/news service focused on innovations in cities across the world. Citiscope’s weekly stories by indigenous journalists, as well as a CitiSignals, curated reports on major urban developments worldwide, began publication in late 2013. Peirce was the lead author of the 2008 book, Century of the City: No Time To Lose, based on a “Global Urban Summit” convened by the Rockefeller Foundation in Bellagio, Italy. He also authored the 1993 book, Citistates, on the worldwide rise of metro regions. A veteran U.S. journalist focused on cities and issues of local governance, he was a founder of National Journal magazine and from 1975 to 2013 wrote the United States first nationally syndicated column on city and state trends and developments, distributed by the Washington Post Writers Group. He was formerly a member of the German Marshall Fund of the U.S. board.  nealpierce

Neha Sami: Neha works on the political economy of land and governance in urban India. She is also interested in issues of brownfield redevelopment and planning for climate change. At IIHS, she anchors research of urbanisation and climate change; heads collaborative knowledge networks under the Urban Knowledge Network Asia; and leads work on India’s first integrated metropolitan assessment for Bangalore.She has worked with the Boston Redevelopment Authority as an analyst with the Economic Development Division. She has also worked as a consultant with the Environment and Sustainable Development Division of the UN-ESCAP (Bangkok).Her recent writing includes several journal articles in Land Use Policy; International Journal of Urban And Regional Research; and the Journal of Industrial Ecology.Neha has a Ph.D. in Urban Planning from the University of Michigan, and a Masters in Environmental Management from Yale University.  neha copy

Paula Lucci : Paula joined ODI in November 2011. Current research interests include the post-2015 MDGs debate, urban poverty, and inclusive growth. She has over five years experience in economic development research and policy analysis. She has also done work on the role of the private sector in development and migration. Prior to joining ODI, Paula was Managing Economist in a private sector consultancy and has worked for think tanks in developed and developing countries, such as, the Institute for Public Policy Research, the Centre for Cities, the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society in Oxford, and CENIT in Argentina. She also has experience working for the public sector in Argentina and Mexico. She holds an MPhil in International Development from Oxford University and an MSc in Economics from Pompeu Fabra University.  paulalucci

Peter Head: Peter is a civil and structural engineer who has become a recognised world leader in major bridges, advanced composite technology and in sustainable development in cities and regions with leadership posts in AECOM and Arup. He has won many awards for his work including in 2009 the Sir Frank Whittle medal of the Royal Academy of Engineering for a lifetime contribution to Innovation in Engineering and the Environment.He joined Arup in 2004 to create and lead their planning and integrated urbanism team, which by 2011 had doubled in size to 800 people.He was cited by Time magazine in 2008 as one of 30 global eco-heroes and has been one of CNN’s Principle Voices. In 2011 he was awarded the CBE in the New Year’s Honours List for services to Civil Engineering and the Environment.In April 2011 he left Arup to set up The Ecological Sequestration Trust, a Charity which has brought together the world’s top scientists, engineers, economists, financiers and other specialists to create a GIS platform to enable regions all over the world to plan, design and implement inclusive resilient growth using low carbon urban-rural development approaches which are energy, water and food secure.  peterhead

Rafael Tuts : Rafael Tuts is since January 2012 Coordinator of the Urban Planning and Design Branch of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, based in Nairobi, Kenya. The current focus of his work is to support national, regional and city authorities to achieve compact, integrated, connected and inclusive cities that are resilient to climate change. This vision is being implemented at different scale levels, ranging from neighborhood design to city-region planning, in over thirty countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.Within this capacity, he is also supervising UN-Habitat’s Cities and Climate Change Initiative and its Low Emission Urban Development Strategies project (Urban LEDS). He is also leading UN-Habitat’s contribution to the Post 2015 Development Agenda including the formulation of the Sustainable Development Goals. He is UN-Habitat’s focal point for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Global Environment Fund (GEF) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).Together with colleagues from the World Bank, UNEP and Cities Alliance, he developed and implemented a Joint Work Programme on Cities and Climate Change, which received the World Bank Vice-President Team Award in 2011 in recognition of its efforts as a unique showcase of the positive effects of successful consensus-building in a global partnership.  rafaeltuts

Sarah Potts: Sarah Potts serves as the Interim Director of C40 Governance and Global Partnerships. In this role, Sarah oversees all partnerships, grants, and drives core strategy efforts related to the organisation’s delivery of strategic support across all C40 cities. Previously, Sarah served the organisation as the Deputy Director of Regions and Initiatives, where she developed and drove core global strategy efforts related to delivery of direct assistance and peer-to-peer exchange across 63 C40 Cities around the world to reduce GHG emissions and climate risks. Prior to the integration of C40 and the Clinton Climate Initiative, Sarah served as the Los Angeles City Director for the Clinton Climate Initaitive. Sarah holds both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in International Development from Brown University.  sarahpotts

Shagun Mehrotra: Shagun Mehrotra is an Assistant Professor in Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management. His research, teaching, and policy advice focus on environmental management, infrastructure economics and finance, and poverty reduction in cities, particularly in large developing-country slums. Shagun was formerly Managing Director of Climate and Cities, an international policy advisory facility, CCSR, jointly housed at The Earth Institute, Columbia University, and NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Previously, he was on the staff of the World Bank, leading infrastructure reform of public utilities in Africa with a focus on expanding services to the urban poor. Shagun has a PhD in Infrastructure Economics and Urban Planning from Columbia University, in addition to Masters Degrees in Urban Planning, and International Affairs from Columbia University, as well as Urban Environmental Management from the Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand.  shagun

Sue Parnell: Sue Parnell is an urban geographer in the Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and is on the Executive of the African Centre for Cities at UCT. She has held previous academic positions at Wits University and the University of London (SOAS) and visiting research fellowships from the LSE, Oxford University, Durham University, the British Academy and was a Leverhulme Visiting Professor at University College London in 2012. She is a widely published author of scholarly papers. Recent co-edited books include Climate at a City Scale, A Routledge Handbook of Cities of the Global South and Africa’s Urban Revolution. She serves on the Editorial Boards of many ISI ranked academic journals dealing with urban and development issues.Sue’s early academic research was in the area of urban historical geography and focussed on the rise of racial residential segregation and the impact of colonialism on urbanisation and town planning in Sub-Saharan Africa. Post democracy in South Africa much of her work focused on issues of urban transformation (local government, welfare and urban environmental justice. By its nature this research was not purely academic, but involved liasing with communities, local and national government and international donors. This mode of translational research now forms a core mode of work at the African Centre for Cities. ). Recently Sue has returned to historical research, working with a number of other partners on explaining the planning deficits of African cities.Sue has a prominent position with UCT leadership structures, served on the boards of several local NGOs concerned with poverty alleviation, sustainability and gender equity, is a regular keynote speaker and is part of national and international advisory research panels.  sueparnell

Thomas Elmquist: Thomas Elmqvist, PhD, is a professor in Natural Resource Management at Stockholm resilience Centre, Stockholm University. His research is focused on ecosystem services, land use change, urbanization, natural disturbances and components of resilience including the role of social institutions. He is coordinating a major interdisciplinary research theme as part of the Stockholm Resilience Centre (www.stockholmresilience.su.se) at Stockholm University, focussing on governance and management of ecosystem services in urban landscapes. He serves as associated editor for the journals Ecology and Society, Ecosystem services, Ambio and Sustainability Science. He has led the “Cities and Biodiversity project” (www.cbobook.org) and currently leading a Future Earth project “What is Urban” and part of the scoping expert group on regional and subregional assessments in IPBES  thomaselmquist

William Solecki: William D. Solecki is a Professor in the Department of Geography, Hunter College, City University of New York. He has led or co-led numerous projects on the process of urban environmental change and transformation. As Director of the CUNY Institute for Sustainable Cities, he has worked extensively on connecting cutting-edge urban environmental science to everyday practice and action in cities. He most recently served as Co-Chair of the New York City Panel on Climate Change, as Co-Principal Investigator of the Integrated Assessment for Effective Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in New York State (ClimAID), and as Co-Leader of the Metropolitan East Coast Assessment of the US National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change. He is a Lead Author of the IPCC Working Group II Fifth Assessment Report. He is also a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Urban and Global Environmental Change core project of the International Human Dimensions Programme.  williamsolecki

Yunus Arikhan: Yunus Arikan has been working at ICLEI World Secretariat since 2009. Between 2009-2012, he led ICLEI´s Cities Climate Center. Within this scope, he advanced and coordinated ICLEI´s work on climate mitigation, established the Bonn Center for Local Climate Action and Reporting – carbonn, operating the Cities Climate Registry, and served as the Director of Secretariat the World Mayors Council on Climate Change. Since 2013, he leads ICLEI´s policy and advocacy work at the UN ECOSOC, UN bodies and multilateral agreements.  yunus

Zarina Patel: Zarina Patel holds a joint appointment with the African Centre for Cities and the Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences at the University of Cape Town. Her research is focused on the political dimensions of policy and governance arrangements in pursuit of urban sustainable development. Uncovering of ways in which power is exercised through the use of specific and multiple knowledges and the range of value-based assumptions held by decision makers is a central strand of her research. A further strand traces the political geographies of environmental governance and the changing roles of the state and non-state actors in urban climate governance. Previous appointments include a senior lectureship in the School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Sciences at the University of Witwatersrand, and a British Academy Fellowship in the Geography Department at the University of Sheffield. She has sat on the Boards of various environmental NGOs and statutory bodies in South Africa, and continues to serve on the Editorial Board of Local Environment: International Journal of Justice and Sustainability.  zarina


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