UN-HABITAT Executive Director Dr. Joan Clos on Tuesday told students at the University of Nairobi that he considered universities as strategic partners in the quest for sustainable urban development.
UN-HABITAT Executive Director Dr. Joan Clos gives a public lecture on Challenges of Universities in Sub-Saharan Africa and the role of University at the University of Nairobi, Kenya 2011 © UN-HABITAT/Julius Mwelu|
In a speech on the Challenges of urbanization in Sub-Saharan Africa and the role of universities,he spoke of the need to rethink our cities and to elaborate a new urban paradigm: "Urban planning and design is the key to a sustainable urban future in the medium and long term. Concepts such as density, diversity, equity, efficiency should be the base for this new paradigm," he said. "Hope is with the universities of developing countries. The universities are strategic partners for UN-HABITAT and we will cooperate with them to face the growth of urban areas and to focus on urban planning and design as a solution to improve our cities. It is your turn to change the paradigm and to create better cities."
The audience of several hundred included many students, the Director General of the United Nations Office in Nairobi, Ms. Sahle-Work Zewde; the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of Nairobi, Professor George Magoha; Professor Paul Syagga, from the Department of Real Estate and Construction Management; Mr. Tom Odongo, Director of Planning at the City Council of Nairobi; and Professor Peter Ngau, from the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Nairobi.