In an effort to bring a more inclusive approach to green housing provision UN-Habitat has launched i-HOUSE, a new initiative promoting coordination and knowledge-sharing in the field of sustainable urban development.
The initiative, and its accompanying global network, was announced at a recent expert group meeting on sustainable housing at UN-Habitat’s headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya which more than 20 leading urban academics and practitioners from around the world attended.
Speaking at the event, UN Under-Secretary-General and UN-Habitat Executive Director, Dr Joan Clos highlighted the pressing need for better coordination of efforts in designing and implementing green buildings and sustainable building activities.
i-HOUSE will have a specific focus on low-income housing and slum upgrading in developing countries, as well as housing provision in post-crisis and humanitarian context.
In addition, a knowledge-sharing platform called i-BUILD will bring the expertise and best practice of experts working in the field to one place where it can be accessed by their peers. I-BUILD will be hosted on the Urban Gateway, UN-Habitat’s online portal for sustainable urbanisation.
The challenge of producing housing that is environmentally sustainable is not limited to developing countries. Globally, there is a lack of capacity, willingness, knowledge-sharing and institutional and regulatory support for mainstreaming sustainability dimensions within the housing projects, programmes, and private sector housing development.