CoLab for Change

Case Studies for Collaborative Urban Transformation

Transforming fast growing cities of the global south into globally attractive hubs of the world economy cannot be achieved without including the urban poor as leaders in housing and urban development processes.

Roughly 1 billion people worldwide live in slums, with little to no access to safe housing, water, sanitation, electricity, or any of the other physical and social services that many of us take for granted. For these people urban development is about survival. It is about creating cities in which they can live safely and with dignity. Yet it is precisely these populations who remain least represented in urban decision-making processes.

The Cities Alliance Joint Work Programme on Habitat III highlights the value, experience and role of partnerships between national governments, local authorities and organized civil society in achieving sustainable development and poverty reduction in cities and believes that development partnerships:

- Are key catalysts for a sustainable future

- Help realise good urban governance

- Strengthen economic development

- Build inclusive cities

For more information, read the JWP’s Technical Background Paper.

The CoLab for Change case studies highlight the need for local government to implement the successful tools developed by community organizations and civil society that generate inclusive urban policies and development.

The work highlighted in these case studies shall inspire governments and civil society to develop effective strategies to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 11 to “make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” and SDG 17 to “revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.”

This project was made possible through financial support from Cities Alliance and GIZ.

These films were made by youth in slums as part of SDI’s Know Your City TV project, equipping youth with video documentation resources to tell stories of the lived experiences of the urban poor, and make media that contributes to the transformation of slums and cities.

 What is KYC.TV ?

Know Your City TV puts the power of storytelling into the hands of urban poor youth. By equipping youth with video documentation skills and resources they are able to share stories of the lived experiences of the urban poor with the world by making media that contributes to the transformation of slums and cities.

Young people are at the forefront when it comes to technology. The expansion of smart phones across the Global South has made it much easier for urban poor youth to capture their surroundings and start conversations about the issues that need to be addressed when transforming slums and cities. The KYC.TV project is bridging the north-south tech divide by creating space for urban poor youth to share the stories of their communities with the world.

How are KYC.TV films produced ?

The KYC.TV process starts with workshops that provide basic gear, filming, and editing training to groups of youth from the slums. These skills are put to use in making short informational or music videos that allow the youth filmmakers to practice and perfect their skills. Through the filming courses, youth gain a set of skills and equipment that they can use to act as advocates for their communities, and improve their livelihood opportunities.

For these case studies, the KYC.TV youth have been supported by filmmaker James Tayler.

Case Study / Afghanistan

National urban policy priority programme.   

Pioneering inclusive and grassroots consultations, data-driven and evidence-based policy and programme design. Programme targets and indicators aligned with the SDGs.

Case Study / Bolivia

Improving land rights for women and excluded families in Bolivia     

Women’s land and property rights. Community-driven advocacy. Partnerships with local authorities to streamline the administrative procedures. 

Case Study / Cambodia

Asian Coalition for Community Action (ACCA)      

Transform development options for Asia’s urban poor. Support a process of community-led change. 150 cities. 15 Asian countries.  

Case Study / South Africa

Know Your City

Community-driven slum data. Identification of development needs. Inclusive partnerships with local government. Co-produced slum upgrading strategies. 

Case Study / Ghana

Land, Services and Citizenship Country Program  

National urban dialogue catalyzed. Attitudes on informality transformed. Slums profiled and mapped citywide. Slum dwellers mobilized. National urban policy launched.

Case Study / Uganda

Transforming Settlements of the Urban Poor in Uganda (TSUPU)

Better governance. Empowered slum dwellers. National dialogue on urban issues.