Weekly Urban News Update
June 23rd, 2017
In This Update

The International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems has released a report discussing how food policies can work in cities, and how policies can improve urban food systems and security for the rapidly urbanizing future. The report takes lessons in food policy from five case studies from around the world, ranging from towns just starting to create their own food policies to cities that are trying to improve upon their well-established and advanced systems. The five food policy systems are from Belo Horizonte in Brazil, the Amsterdam Approach to Healthy Weight in The Netherlands, the Nairobi Urban Agriculture Promotion and Regulation Act in Kenya, the Detroit Urban Agricultural Ordinance in Michigan and the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Plan from Canada. These systems were all developed in very different contexts, and so they give unique perspectives and input on the challenges their food systems face, and what drives their policies forward.

Read the full report  here.
The European Foundational Centre met for their annual meeting this month in Warsaw, Poland, where philanthropic leaders from across the continent discussed topics like combating nationalism, strengthening public institutions and rediscovering solidarity. In their two panel discussions on cities, one of which focused on partnership opportunities between groups working to make cities more inclusive, the other of which focused on opportunities at the intersection between the fights against climate change and inequality, foundations highlighted their growing importance within urban development as government and public sector development remains on a slow-down. And as foundations realize that more of their work will be centered in cities in a rapidly urbanizing world, they are seeking bigger roles in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and looking for new partnerships with government, the private sector and other members of civil society. As a proponent of cross-sector cooperation for development, IHC Global is enthusiastic at the prospect of foundations becoming more involved in creating sustainable and inclusive cities for all.

Read the full article here.

IHC Global member organization Chemonics will be hosting an event next week; Squaring the Circle: Can We Reshape Development by Doing it Differently? The moderated panel discussion will consider thinking and working politically (TWP), and how donors and project implementers can support more effective, flexible, politically savvy interventions to better respond to dynamic local contexts and sector-specific outcomes. In the development sector, donor frameworks are often rigid and linear, and so working politically, which requires more flexibility, remains a challenge for which the speakers will brainstorm a solution. Speakers will include Chemonics International Director of West and Central Africa and Haiti Jennifer Swift-Morgan, Overseas Development Institute (ODI) Research Associate Diana Cammack; USAID Center for Democracy, Human Rights and Governance Cross-Sectoral Programs Division Coordinator Sarah Swift; and IHC Global member Urban Institute's Center on International Development and Governance Director Charles Cadwell. The panel will be moderated by Chemonics International Democracy and Governance Practice Director Sharon Van Pelt.

When: Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM EST
Where: Chemonics
1717 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20006

Find out more about the event  here.

The USAID Land Portal, in collaboration with GLTN/GLII and IHC Global member Land Alliance, is hosting a dialogue which will focus on how organizations should measure the perception of land tenure security in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals. SDG Indicator 1.4.2 was developed by the United Nations to monitor the progress of the security of land and property rights by countries during the SDG period until 2030. This online discussion aims to narrow down how the progress should be measured via feedback from on-the-ground sources and a variety of other stakeholders, and raise awareness of efforts to make these measurements to all land sector stakeholders. 

When:  June 20, 2017 - July 4, 2017
Where: The panel will be online

Register and learn more about the event  here.
Feature IHC Global Urban Feature: Tenure & Land Security
Nigeria court rules eviction unconstitutional

The Issue
A Nigerian court has ruled that the forcible eviction of thousands of people living in a slum called Otodo-Gbame on the edge of Lagos is unconstitutional, backing their ruling with the assertion that residents' rights had been violated because there was no resettlement plan. The judge's ruling is a victory for the residents over the state government, which claims that clearance of the slum is necessary because it poses an "environmental risk". This is not the first slum to be under threat of eviction by the Nigerian state government, and parts of it have already been emptied in waves. In March, nearly 5,000 people's homes were demolished, and there are alleged reports of people being chased into the water on boats.
What We See
This ruling is monumental for the remaining residents of Otodo-Gbame, and for the thousands of residents in slums across Nigeria and the developing world that are at risk of eviction and demolition. However, the Nigerian government has ignored these sorts of rulings in the past, and has already denied that the slum was being demolished in the first place, claiming that it had been destroyed by a fire. Residents have the support of the justice system in Nigeria, but they have a difficult task ahead of them: keeping their homes in face of great government pressure. Creating a well-structured resettlement program or teaming up with the private sector and non-governmental organizations to upgrade the slum and improve the housing security for thousands are just two of the mutually beneficial solutions that the Nigerian government could implement instead of forcing people from their homes. Indeed, if  the government keeps trying to evict the slum, they will miss the key opportunity of working with the slum residents and locals leaders, which could gain trust from the Nigerian people and foster stable democratic institutions.

Read the full article  here.
To learn more about IHC Global's Key Policy Topics, which are both barriers and gateways to better, more equitable urban development, click here
In the news and around the web
  • Chicago's gentrification is erasing its Latino presence, one mural at a time.
  • Watch one girl's journey to find clean water in the polluted lakes of Bangalore.
  • City planners and urban architects have an increasingly important role in defending cities from terrorism.
  • This past Tuesday was #WorldRefugeeDay. The World Bank goes through where the crisis stands now.

This little boy is one of the millions of Chinese people that live in converted nuclear bunkers below the country's biggest cities.
     Source: National Geographic
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