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RISE Africa brings together thinkers, doers and enablers to inspire action for sustainable cities

Read the fourth thought piece
SDG localisation to support the Decade of Action in African cities
Tackling SDG localisation sideways in Africa’s cities
by Sylvia Croese and Nachi Majoe
The ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been especially felt in cities, with the urban poor in the global South having suffered most from the disproportionate impact from the crisis. With over half of the world’s global population already living in urban areas, the ways in which future urban growth and development is managed will greatly determine the extent to which global development goals are met, making cities and local governments key parts of the solution to achieving sustainable development. This position piece builds on our engagements as a researcher and practitioner in various international projects, networks and initiatives related to sustainable urban development to argue in favour of a lateral approach to post-pandemic development. Such an approach recognizes the significance of peer-to-peer exchange and learning between cities and urban communities at large as an accelerator of progress on the localization of global policy agendas. This is especially important in the African context where levels of decentralization and access to urban expertise or resources are uneven. We identify city networks, national governments and academia and civil society as key actors and vectors that can support such cross-city exchange and sharing, in order to stimulate horizontal and transversal local approaches to sustainable development in a post-pandemic world.


Calling all Entrepreneurs & Businesses working in Food, Health and Climate!
Apply for our Circular Economy Showcase to be incubated as
part of ACE Africa.
Prizes for startups: R25 000;
Prizes for business ideas: R5 000.
Applications due 7 November 2021

Accelerating Circular Economy in Africa - Circular Business Showcase

30 November 2021

As part of the ACE Africa project which is supported by the Embassy of Finland to South Africa, SU LaunchLab and ICLEI Africa are hosting an event in the form of a pitch competition where existing businesses and business ideas from across Africa that contribute to the circular economy will be showcased.
What are we looking for?
We are looking for entrepreneurs with commercialisable ideas or existing businesses committed to circular innovation in climate, food, and health. Unsure what makes a circular business? Find inspiration here.
Join us for an urban mobility mixer in Cape Town

Partnerships are key to building a successful low-carbon integrated public transport network.
Through connecting as people, we can better connect the city.  Please join us in a partnership building mixer function with key mobility stakeholders from all sectors. Hosted by ICLEI Africa, Open Streets Cape Town, and Young Urbanists.

Date: Thursday, 11 November 2021
Time: 6:30pm for 7pm
Venue: TBC (in person)
Interested in hosting local events in collaboration with RISE Africa?


Introducing the Circular City Actions Framework:
A tool to plan for circular economy interventions in your city
This month, ICLEI, in collaboration with Circle Economy and Metabolic, introduced the Circular City Actions Framework, a tool designed to provide urban change makers with five complementary principles to support more circular systems. These are RETHINK, REGENERATE, REUSE, REDUCE, RECOVER, and each of the principles has a number of strategies to guide action. The framework is action-based and as such provides local government officials with strategic direction and the opportunity to engage with case studies from many cities. Introducing this tool in an interactive workshop was important to allow local government officials to understand how to use the tool to develop holistic plans to incorporate circular practices into their respective cities and to maximise on the benefits associated with these interventions.
How to Incorporate Circular and Sustainable Practices into Your Business:
ACE Africa
As important as local governments and policy-makers are for creating an enabling environment for the circular economy to develop and become embedded in practice, there is a tacit understanding that the transition to circularity is being led by the private sector. As such there is a need to support circular businesses through further access to information, access to finance, the right types of incentives and clear guidance and regulation. This webinar, convened by ICLEI Africa and LaunchLab as part of the ACE Africa project, aimed to explore how to incorporate circular practices into existing businesses or to take sustainable business ideas to the next level. The webinar drew on the expertise of Deborah Nartey of Footprints Africa, Himkaar Singh, CEO of Compost Kitchen and Simone Smit from UNDP’s Accelerator Labs. Each shared important ideas related to CE and business. Some of the overarching ideas shared included the importance of understanding existing circular practices, developing ideas and interventions for the local context, and supporting collaboration between stakeholders. It was noted that although waste is not the only aspect of circular economy that should be addressed, it is a good entry point for entrepreneurs. From a business and entrepreneurial perspective the session highlighted the importance of paying attention to one’s surroundings, realising that businesses take time to develop, requiring ‘patient finance with risk appetite’ and requiring marketing plans that get the ideas in front of potential customers in effective ways. Find out more about ACE Africa here.



RISE Africa, brought to you by ICLEI Africa, with support from our partners: 

Our Future Cities, African Centre for Cities, NRF, South African Cities network, African Circular Economy Network, Djouman, The Nature of Cities, IIED, WWF, AU Youth Envoy


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