Environment & Urbanization

World leading environmental and urban studies journal
E and U April 2016 cover detail

Current issue: From the MDGs to the SDGs and Habitat III

In 2015, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were replaced by the Sustainable Development Goals. And the UN Conference Habitat III to be held in October 2016 is meant to agree on “the new urban agenda” through which these goals are to be met. This issue of Environment and Urbanization looks critically at whether the much-needed changes in urban policy and practice will be achieved. It includes papers on:

  • what inclusive urbanization actually means (and whether governments will act on it)
  • the rapidly expanding urban agenda but with diminishing expectations for Habitat III
  • the return to large, heavily subsidized and inappropriate mass housing
  • the high rates of return that can come from good urban policy
  • whether we need a new urban agenda for refugees/those displaced by conflict
  • whether urban centres are taken seriously in the post-2015 Agenda
  • indicators that allow cities to measure and monitor their SDG performance
  • missing the MDG targets for water and sanitation in urban areas
  • getting public and environmental health back into urban agendas


Book notes

After reading The Spectacular Favela by Erika Robb Larkins, you will feel that you have lived in Rocinha, the Rio de Janeiro favela where Larkins herself lived for a total of 31 months between 2008 and 2014. Here, in this most (in)famous favela of Latin America, Larkins explores violence and seeks to understand how its commodification and spectacle are central to its production.

This book stems from Beate Ginzel’s PhD thesis on networks as modes of cooperation and action, along with their role and potential to bridge the gap between top-down strategies of the state and bottom-up initiatives of local communities. An architect by training, Ginzel used case study research between 2009 and early 2012, relating to the Tanzanian Urban Poor Federation (TUPF). TUPF is part of the transnational network Shack/Slum Dwellers International (SDI) and represents SDI at the continental level as a member of the East African Hub.

Latest blogs

International agencies must support local processes if we are to achieve ambitious global goals – so benefits reach urban communities on the ground whose needs these goals are set up to meet.
Is it possible for global funds to be accountable to local communities – especially those whose needs the funds should address? 
Ten concise points respond to the current draft of Habitat III's New Urban Agenda which is lengthy, dense and gives too little attention to the key roles of local government and civil society.

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Sister journal

E&U's sister journal  Medio Ambiente y Urbanizacion focusses on Latin America

E & U Latin America