Sustainable, Resource-Efficient Cities: Future of Urban Development

Sustainable Cities Can Better Handle the Weight and Pressures of Climate Change

Poor urban planning in countries worldwide has a major impact on a cities ability to withstand climate change and natural disasters. Globalisation is taking place at an unprecedented rate. A doubled urban population and tripled urbanised land area are projected in developing countries over the next two decades. The rapid growth of the economy has opened up new opportunities, but it has also created serious social, economic, and environmental challenges.

There have been 2 billion natural disasters in the past decade. In order to eliminate poverty and boost shared prosperity, it’s imperative to build sustainable communities-whether they are villages, cities, or nations. Sustainable cities are environmentally sustainable in terms of cleanliness and efficiency. Second, a sustainable community is sustainable against human, economic and natural disasters. They are well prepared for natural disasters, the intensity and frequency of which are increasing due to climate change. Third, a sustainable community is an integrated community. They connect all sectors of society and all groups of people, including the privileged and vulnerable, in their trade, work and development. 

In order to solve urban problems, urbanpreneurs leverage networks, powered by greater internet connection and digital resources that cities provide. In Sao Paulo, Brazil, an innovative fintech startup is making a difference in one of the world’s largest slums by improving financial literacy, increasing financial inclusion, and providing microloans to its residents. In Subang Jaya, Malaysian, urbanpreneurs help mom-and-pop stores – small, family-run businesses – embrace digitalisation.

These MSMEs account for nearly 97 percent of the country’ economy, and many need help implementing digital technologies. Thanks to local entrepreneurs, more mom-and-pop businesses can digitise their operations and better manage their inventory. In addition, they can also tap into low-interest loans and receive support from local governments. In Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city, a new digital hub is helping startups to grow and thrive.

With a focus on innovation, the hub provides easy access to information, talent and capital. In Monterrey, Mexico’s tech hub, a networked business environment that prioritises innovation enables urbanpreneurs to share knowledge, technology and resources. The system aims to spark economic growth by awakening students’ entrepreneurial spirit and fostering cooperation between start-ups, educational institutions and other companies. 

The main areas of current work for Sustainable Cities are:

  1.  Action Plan on Sustainable Consumption and Production for Cities covering all sectors
  2. Early interventions through policy, technology and finance to reduce and manage pollution and waste

Urban entrepreneurs have much to contribute to the development of sustainable cities. 

They can help invest in developing technological solutions like green infrastructure, solar panels, electric charging stations

 By investing in such solutions, cities can make themselves more attractive to both businesses and residents and at the same time reduce their environmental impact. 

 Another way urban entrepreneurs can help build sustainable cities is by promoting the use of shared resources.

Smart Sustainable Cities: The Perfect Combination

The advantages and elements of smart cities are numerous, ranging from economic benefits to those of a more social and environmental nature. We’ll focus on the most relevant ones:

Video surveillance offers a safe and smart way to help improve public safety. With the newest innovations, accidents or crimes can be detected almost instantly, for the people on both sides of the camera.

Data makes it easier to make better decisions: using data to help manage performance metrics means that you can keep track of them in real time. This will improve the quality of your services.

New cutting-edge technologies are allowing us to reduce our environmental footprint. This allows for a  better understanding of the environment and reduces the effect on climate change.