Kisumu Town Hall

Kisumu, Kenya, one of Mistra Urban Futures Local Interaction Platforms, is one of Africa's intermediate cities. Photo (Kisumu Town Hall): Omondi/Wikimedia Commons

Success factors for city-business collaboration

Cities and business have a lot to learn from each other. With about three-quarters of global emissions and energy demand, the opportunities for cutting-edge technologies and expertise in design and production are unprecedented in the world's cities. Forward-looking cities and businesses recognise these opportunities, writes Roland Hunziker, director of the Sustainable Buildings and Cities programme at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development in Geneva. The article presents findings from a recent study by ICLEI and the WBCSD, including a number of success factors for collaboration. 

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The importance of intermediate cities

The world's urban planners and authorities have not yet really realised that the intermediate cities - those with up to 1 million inhabitants - will have significant roles to play in the coming decades. Not only are they expected to increase in size and numbers, they are frequently also most important nodes between urban and rural economies. Thus they become far more strategically important than what the actual size of the city suggests. Read the whole article by Borja M Iglesias, Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya in Barcelona.

Intermediate cities part of the New Urban Agenda

A series of thematic meetings lead the way to Habitat III in October next year. The most recent meeting agenda was all about the intermediate cities, arranged in Cuenca, Ecuador, with 600,000 inhabitants. The advantages of medium-sized cities were discussed - such as the opportunities to walk from home to work for many people - but also the challenges, not least the rapid growth that many such cities experience. In many cases, the proportional expansion is considerably larger than the mega-cities growth. Read Greg Scruggs' report from Cuenca.

Links to a selection of Citiscope articles from previous months