Urban Natural Assets for Africa: Resilience and Restoration for Life

Building on the previous UNA programme work funded by SwedBio since 2014, the overarching impact of the newest project under the UNA programme, Urban Natural Assets: Resilience and Restoration for Life (UNA Resilience), is to transform development trajectories for African cities towards those that improve sustainable development of, and interconnectedness with, their surrounding natural systems along three interlinked urban pillars (governance, planning and finance), through building urban resilience, sufficient agency and momentum for an unfolding process of transformative change.

This project is funded by Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), through SwedBio at the Stockholm Resilience Centre.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Project details

UNA Resilience overall objectives are to:

Understand the dynamic drivers of risk as well as the socio-economic landscape in African cities and how this relates to unlocking natures ability to provide a multitude of benefits for urban populations.

Improve the framework and mainstreaming conditions for nature-based measures that build resilience, through a sustained, deep transdisciplinary and multi-stakeholder, whole-of-society co-creation approach.

Mainstream and implement tailored approaches for urban nature-based resilience, including the sustainable utilisation and restoration of ecosystems in order to improve good governance, planning practices and access to finance.

Scale urban nature-based resilience approaches, demonstrating their ability to support reduced risks, vulnerabilities, and inequalities, and improve sustainable livelihoods over longer timeframes.

Align related activities and outputs with international policy and legal processes, such as those frameworks provided for by international environmental and human rights law, through outreach and advocacy campaigns and the promotion of strengthened multi-level governance systems.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Project cities

UNA Resilience has brought on 2 new cities in this phase of the project. The other 8 cities took part in previous UNA projects, and along with the new cities, will continue to receive support, training and capacity building in this latest phase.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Advisory board

UNA Resilience will benefit greatly from the expertise of our advisory board members, from a variety of fields and positions.

Mr Jean-Franรงois Habeau

Focus:
Financing and investment of urban development and cities

Position:
Executive Director, The Global Fund for Cities Development (France)

Dr Thomas Elmqvist

Focus:ย 
Natural resource management (ecosystem services, land use change, urbanization, natural disturbances and components of resilience including the role of social institutions)

Position:
Professor, Stockholm Resilience Centre (Sweden)

Dr Shuaib Lwasa

Focus:
Cities and climate change from the global south perspective, working on adaptation and mitigation possibilities for transformative urban development

Position:
Associate Professor, Makerere University (Uganda)

Dr Ally Namangaya

Focus:
Regional development planning

Position:
Dean, Ardhi University (Tanzania)

Ms Irene Mwenda

Focus:
Gender equality and human rights

Position:
Lawyer (Kenya)

Mr Rafael Moser

Focus:
Climate finance, locally led adaptation, and multi-level governance

Position:
Programme Specialist at UNCDF/LoCAL Facility (Thailand)

Dr Daphine Agaba

Focus:
Human rights, gender, natural resources, governance, political leadership and decoloniality

Position:
Thabo Mbeki African School of Public and International Affairs (TM-School) at the University of South Africa (Unisa) (Kenya)

Dr Joe Mulligan

Focus:
Joint application of science and local knowledge to develop responsive and sustainable projects

Position:
Executive Director and Founding Principal, Kounkuey Design Initiative (Kenya)

Dr Pippen Anderson

Focus:
Urban ecology (exploring opportunities for the effective use of NBS and strengthening the connection of NBS and ecological restoration)

Position:
Associate Professor, University of Cape Townย (South Africa)

Dr Timon McPhearson

Focus:
Urban ecology, urban systems, climate change risk and its impact on livelihoods and well-being and mainstreaming tailored approaches for NBS resilient measures

Position:
Professor and Director of the Urban Systems Lab at The New School (USA)

Dr Sibusiso Nxumalo

Focus:
Climate adaptation finance and food security

Position:
Climate Finance Specialist Advisor, International Development Group LLC (South Africa)

Mr Claudio Chiarolla

Focus:
Sustainable development, global law, human rights, biodiversity advocacy and implementation support

Position:
Programme Management Officer, Implementation Support Division (ISD), Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) (Canada)

Ms Megan Sager

Focus:
Scaling up nature-based solutions through access to markets, innovative finance, impact investing, blended finance, public-private partnerships

Position:
Founder and Director, Consulting for Sustainable Solutions (South Africa)

Msย Marlene Laros

Focus:
Policy, strategy, planning and institutional alignment for local level ecosystem-based adaptation and nature-based solutions

Position:
Biodiversity and Coastal Management, Western Cape Provincial Government (South Africa)

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Recent articles

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Read more about our latest online course and ICLEI Africa’s new virtual learning platformย 

Toward a new era of urban African resilience

Nature-based solutions could help cities stabilise warming to below 2ยฐC. ICLEI Africa continues to empower local governments to harness existing urban natural assets with the launch of UNA: Resilience for Life.

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Read more about the work the UNA programme did in Entebbe to build resilience, and how the project is expanding with the latest phase UNA: Resilience

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Rights for resilience

The Urban Natural Assets (UNA) programmeโ€™s latest project looks to a human rights-based approach to restore natural assets and build resilience

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