Global: Urban Innovation

Innovation Areas: FORESIGHT
Stage: Early stage

Urban Innovation Futures workshop to discuss challenges and opportunities of rapid urbanization and climate change

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The problem addressed

Asian cities, particularly coastal cities, are highly vulnerable to climate change and yet Asia houses more than half of the world’s urban population. By 2050, an additional 1.25 billion people will join urban Asia. While Asia hosts 25 out of 40 megacities, the fastest growing urban centers are medium–sized with less than 1 million inhabitants.

The intervention

In October 2014, UNDP together with USAID, UN-Habitat and UN Global Pulse hosted the Asia Urban Futures Workshop to bring the science and technology sectors together with the development community and progressive city planners in a novel way to discuss the rising challenges and opportunities facing Asia as the result of rapid urbanization and climate change.

The workshop supported partnerships between progressive city planners and development practitioners, highlighting examples of positive actions already being taken, and technology leaders and innovators, presenting transformative approaches to increase urban adaptation and improve urban planning.

The partners

USAID, UN-Habitat, UN Global Pulse and Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network


Together with the Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network, the workshop organizers launched an Urban Resilience Competition to recognize new and innovative approaches to building urban resilience particularly through broad partnerships that contribute to inclusive and pro-poor actions.

The primary objective of the Urban Resilience Competition was to showcase new and innovative work already being undertaken in the field of urban resilience that offers transformative solutions; combines multi-disciplinary perspectives; and builds partnerships in a bottom-up participatory manner of design and implementation. 

Lessons identified

Contact person

Joseph D'Cruz:, Ramya Gopalan:

Related materials

Press release: Asian Urban Futures Workshop 

Collection of publications: The challenges of urbanization in Asia-Pacific


$25,000 USD

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