| Monograph on the inter-regional exchange and transfer of effective practices on urban management |
The trickle-down' theories of the 1950s and the 1960s and the planning process associated with them, have brought about new opportunities for many people, but for a larger number of people living standards were not improved Since the 1970s government efforts particularly those supported by donors, have addressed urban growth and urban poverty through low-cost investment projects in shelter, water supply, sanitation and urban transport. For example, sites-and-services and slum-upgrading projects were intended to demonstrate replicable approaches that could provide benefits to the poor while recovering costs and reducing the financial burdens on the public sector.
Many of these projects were successful in meeting their physical project objectives, but were less successful in sustaining policy change and strengthening institutions. As a result, they have not had major impact on the policies of national and local governments and the broader issues of managing the urban economy. Citywide impact have been achieved in only a few cases. Government and donor programs tended to divide a city into projects, improving specific neighborhoods without the urban policy and institutional framework, such as the functioning of citywide markets for land and housing. As a result, government efforts have not mobilized the private sector and community initiatives, and in many cases they have increased the cost of private solutions through over-regulation and the rationing of scarce capital for investment.
Agenda 21 articulates the need to move beyond the rhetoric of partnership and inclusive consultations and initiate local-to local dialogue between all actors, so that we can form the basis by which all sectors can contribute to the development process.
"One of the major challenges facing the world community as it seeks to replace unsustainable development patterns with environmentally sound and sustainable development, is the need to activate a sense of common purpose on behalf of all sectors of society. The chances of forging such a sense of common purpose will depend on the willingness of all sectors to participate in genuine social partnership and dialogue, while recognizing the independent roles, responsibilities and special capacities of each.
It is time to reflect on what has worked and what has not and to share these lessons with one another in order to create a secure common future. Many of the issues that were once handled within national boundaries have become globalized and the urban areas are the setting for many of them. Financial markets, information systems, technological development, environmental problems, and diseases, such as AIDS, cannot be controlled only by national decision-making structures. New arrangements and relationships have to be developed to deal with a rapidly changing world that has created two different tracks-high growth and low growth among countries and within the countries themselves. It is against this background that the monograph reviews the approaches in various cities that have worked and have the potential for adaptation and replication in other cities. The objective is to provide a general evaluation of some approaches that are being developed by community organizations, local governments, NGOs, and private enterprises, and to derive lessons from these practices so that major issues can be highlighted for action by governments, intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and private enterprises.