In this country synthesis report, the PEAK Urban programme shares lessons from research in South Africa, with implications for global policy and practice.
With the right development approaches, African cities can become hubs that relieve poverty and drive regional growth. PEAK Urban investigates the proactive policies and interventions that can produce efficient, productive, inclusive and sustainable urban futures.
Centred on Cape Town, the research covers four broad categories – health and wellbeing, governance, housing and finance. It offers insights to help government and non-state actors at city, national and international levels address some of the most pressing developmental challenges in the urban global South, and shape stable, equitable cities that deliver decent lives for all residents.
PEAK Urban identifies the proactive policies and interventions that can produce efficient, productive, inclusive and sustainable urban future.
- Reform planning philosophies to guide and coordinate, and embrace informality. Policymakers can best achieve sustainable, equitable cities by replacing urban planning philosophies of rigid regulation and top-down control with flexible guidance and participatory coordination.
- Govern across sectors and levels to address urban complexity.
- Acknowledge and support urban residents’ role in shaping cities. Urban policy should foster an active civil society to help shape policy and hold the state accountable, embracing citizens’ valuable knowledge on adapting to and managing urban challenges. Stakeholders must think creatively about how to bring urban residents and civil society groups into the discussion with other urban governance actors, and work hard to foster persistent engagement with a city’s people.
- Provide multi-stakeholder forums to manage contradictions.
- Promote cross-sectoral knowledge exchange and solutions.
- Establish frameworks to implement global policies at local level.
- Use the PEAK framework to investigate complex urban issues.