Important Guiding Notes on the New Urban Agenda (NUA)

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The New Urban Agenda states the need to readdress the way we plan, finance, develop, govern, and manage cities and a number of its commitments and implementation actions will need effective legal frameworks to be turned into reality. Effective urban legislation is backed by a clear urban policy, has a clear purpose, has a content that responds to the regulated problem, and takes into account the available evidence, existing situation, resources, capacity and views of stakeholders. Effective urban legislation has a clear and enabling structure; it is presented clearly, is user-friendly, easy to comply with; compatible with other legal instruments, and incorporates sufficient mechanisms to monitor implementation and measure results.

Despite capacity development and more sustainable fiscal system can contribute substantially in increasing the implementation chances of legislation only regulations that are effective can guarantee a sustainable and predictable long term urbanization process, reduce corruption and enhance the rule of law. In these efforts, it is important to align with Sustainable Development Goal 16, which includes targets on effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels.

The New Urban Agenda anchors the effective implementation of inclusive and participatory urban policies supported by national, sub-national, and local institutional and regulatory frameworks. One of the most frequent reasons identified for the scarce implementation and enforcement of planning regulations is the lack of human and financial resources. “We have good laws, the problem is the implementation” Do you agree?  Would you agree that we have good laws, but the problem is implementation? Do you think cities in developing countries should wait until they have enough human and financial resources to start implementing their urban legislation? What do you think are the major challenges to the reform of current legal frameworks and enhancing their capability to deliver urban policies effectively?

The New Urban Agenda reaffirms the need to eliminate legal and institutional barriers to access basic services, affordable land and housing for people and local communities in vulnerable situations. What do you think should be the role of urban law in promoting equity and inclusion?

One of the commitments of the New Urban Agenda urges Member states to strengthen urban governance, with sound institutions and mechanisms that review, and thus provides predictability and coherence in the urban development plans and enhancing social inclusion, sustained, inclusive, sustainable economic growth, and environmental protection. Urban legal frameworks are characterized by their low effectiveness and implementation rate. Which governance, legal, and regulatory environment can support harnessing the full development potential of the cities?

The New Urban Agenda stresses the importance of transparency and accountability in the definition and implementation of inclusive and effective urban policies and legislation for sustainable urban development. How should legal and institutional frameworks be reformed to improve transparency and accountability?


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