The New Urban Agenda: Opportunities and Challenges for Financing Sustainable Cities

It has been 40 years since the global community first addressed the cities agenda, at the UN Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat I), but the need for strategic thinking and planning for cities is as strong as ever. In 2016, nearly one billion people live in informal settlements and the infrastructure gap is widening, particularly in developing and least developed countries, due to years of global underinvestment, for example, in the power, water and sanitation sectors. Climate change will only aggravate this gloomy scenario. In this context, effective ways to finance the development of rapidly growing cities becomes imperative for the transformation of urban areas into resilient and sustainable living spaces.