World Urban Campaign Celebrated World Habitat Day on October 2

World Urban Campaign Celebrated World Habitat Day on October 2

On Monday, 2 October, World Urban Campaign (WUC)partners celebrated World Habitat Day in Dubai.

World Habitat Day was created with the intent of reflecting on the state of our towns and cities, and on the basic and fundamental right of all to adequate shelter. It is also intended to remind the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns.

World Habitat Day was established in 1985 by the United Nations General Assembly through Resolution 40/202, and was first celebrated in 1986. It now takes place on the 1st Monday of October every year, as mandated by the General Assembly Resolutions.

Each year, there is a new theme designed to highlight the work that still needs to be done in pursuit of UN-Habitat’s goal of universal access to the fundamental right of all to adequate shelter. This World Habitat Day in 2017 focused on promoting all levels of government and all relevant stakeholders to reflect on how to implement concrete initiatives to ensure adequate and affordable housing in the context of the implementation of the New Urban Agenda at all levels, as well as the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.


This year, World Urban Campaign and its partners celebrated this year’s World Habitat Day at an Urban Thinkers Campus (UTC) hosted by the Dubai Real Estate Institute (DREI).

Appropriately, the goal of the UTC was to bring together major actors including city leaders, development banks, private sector investors, international agencies, NGOs and local community organizations to foster new forms of cooperation and networking amongst urban stakeholders and help identify catalytic interventions that have the potential to deliver positive outcomes across several SDGs. Partners explored ways to find the paradigm shift that we need to avoid the exponential disconnect between city leaders, stakeholders and city users though genuine partnerships. The celebration of World Habitat Day, therefore, fit in perfectly with the objectives of this UTC. 


Opening the World Habitat Day celebration on Monday October 2, UN Resident Coordinator Frode Mauring discussed the importance and urgency of “monitoring urbanization’s key trends likely to unfold over the coming years,” saying that this “is crucial to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”

Mr Mauring further stressed the need for a “holistic approach, from planning of cities, infrastructure, and transport systems to building codes”..”

During the World Habitat Day celebrations, WUC Partners announced a new call for Urban Solutions in order to share initiatives, practices, policies, legislations and models that address urban challenges and constitute effective responses to The City We Need and implement the New Urban Agenda. Urban Solutions can be submitted through an online portal, and information about that portal and how to access it can be found below.  


Additionally, Didier Vancutsem, Chair of the Habitat Professionals Forum announced the launch of the Urban Thinkers Academy, a new WUC initiative to build capacity towards the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the urban dimension of the 2030 Development Agenda. The Academy will draw on the expertise of professionals and outcomes of the Urban Thinkers Campuses organized by the WUC Partners around the world since 2015. It will also be a knowledge-sharing space on Urban Solutions, organized around academic and practical curriculum engaging professionals, academics and the private sector. He announced a call for proposals to be launched on 16 October.

Partners are now invited to submit their Urban Solutions through this link:
For more information on the urban solutions proposed last year, please visit:
More information about the new Urban Thinkers Academy can be found here:

Article by World Urban Campaign 
Photo Credits: World Urban Campaign (CC) - UNDP - United Arab Emirates (CC)
Photo 1: Rose Molokoane (SDI), Didier Vancutsem (Habitat Professionals Forum) - Photo 2: Order from left to right: Christine Auclair (UN-Habitat), Tarek El-Sheikh (UN-Habitat), Rose Molokoane (SDI), Mahmoud Hesham El Burai (DREI), Farook Mahmood (FIABCI), Frode Mauring (UN Resident Coordinator UAE), Didier Vancutsem (Habitat Professionals Forum) - Photo 4: Didier Vancutsem (Habitat Professionals Forum)