Integrated urban environmental plans developed in different Latin American countries show how to reduce systemic challenges in urban areas. Overcoming multi-dimensional urban issues requires a holistic view that includes channels for popular participation, higher level government support and cross-sector collaboration. However, it does not exclude a deep understanding of specific local necessities: in Brazil, transportation was a priority; in Colombia, disaster risk reduction; and in Argentina, decentralisation of public services. A critical overview of achievements in these urban environmental governance processes is key for South Asian and African cities that will need to accommodate most of the world’s urban growth.
- Good urban governance can limit environmental problems and the risks generated by unplanned and uncontrolled urban growth.
- Urban environmental problems seem to be best addressed within integrated, long-term and locally-focused development plans involving multiple stakeholders.
- Urban development programmes work when they have a strong social and equity dimension and include channels for participatory decision-making.
del Valle, J. ELLA Guide: Addressing the Urban Challenge in Integral and Inclusive Ways. ELLA, Practical Action Consulting, Lima, Peru (2011) 7 pp.