Working Group 2: Urban infrastructure as key to achieving SDG 11: conditions, experiences and perspectives from the Global South (Cristina Udelsmann Rodrigues)

Chair: Cristina Udelsmann Rodrigues, Nordic Africa Institute, Sweden (


Agenda 2030 has defined urban development as a key sustainable development goal (SDG). Since its approval, countries have been aligning their policies and practices to the Agenda and reporting on them, namely through national voluntary reviews. Focussing specifically on SDG 11 – Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable – this WG will discuss the centrality of infrastructural development for urban development. The WG will demonstrate:

i. how infrastructures and technologies are key to achieving the goal;
ii. the social and economic implications of the infrastructural and technological deficiencies;
iii. the future urban infrastructures that support and generate more just and sustainable futures.

The WG will analyse aspects related to urban infrastructure and technologies, as they relate to:

  • Housing and basic services, in particular slums and informal settlements (11.1);
  • Urban transport systems (11.2; 11.a);
  • Urban planning and management, including issues related to land, participation and national and regional planning linking the urban and the rural (11.3, 11.a);
  • Urban heritage and conservation and the necessary infrastructural improvements (11.4);
  • Risks and disasters that affect urban infrastructure and basic services and their management (11.5, 11.b);
  • Needed infrastructure to reduce the environmental impact of cities (11.6);
  • Urban public spaces and the existing and lacking infrastructure (11.7);
  • Sustainable and resilient buildings (11.c).


1st Session – Parallel sessions I: Thu 17 Feb 13:00–14:30

Reflecting on planning for infrastructure led development through the lens of Dube TradePort case, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Robynne Hansmann (Durban University of Technology)
Jeffery McCarthy (Durban University of Technology)
Nirmala Dorasamy (Durban University of Technology)

Urban waterscapes and the pandemic: Changing water infrastructures and governance in Nairobi
Sophie Schramm (Technical University Dortmund)
Elizabeth Wamuchiru (University of Nairobi)
Moritz Kasper (Technical University Dortmund)
Emmanuel Mwenje (University of Nairobi)

Time for a new paradigm for urban water services infrastructure in Kenya
Laura Inha (City of Tampere)
Jarmo Hukka (Tampere University)
Tapio Katko (Tampere University)

2nd Session – Parallel sessions III: Fri 18 Feb 11:00–12:30

Climate change adaptation policies in Southern Africa and Inequality disparity in urban informal settlements
Natal Buthelezi (University of the Free State)
Abraham Matamanda (University of the Free State)
Verna Nel (University of the Free State)

Relational infrastructuring: provisioning, urban citizenship and everyday governance at precarious urban fringes
Lalli Metsola (University of Helsinki)