A Holistic Approach to Urbanism as an SDGs Accelerator

This Policy Brief was first published in https://t20ind.org


A 2020 policy brief by the United Nations termed urban areas as the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic, with 90 percent of cases worldwide. It also highlighted the path to recovery through goal 11 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by making cities greener, healthier, and more resilient (UNDP, 2020). Making cities healthy requires a synergic and holistic approach involving hardscape (habitat) and softscape (habits) (NUA, 2016). The Addis Ababa Action Agenda recognises the integrated nature of sustainability and emphasises the need for holistic cultural, strategic, and financing frameworks through locally- based knowledge and nationally-owned strategies (UN, 2015). Ancient traditions from the Asia-Pacific area, such as Vastu Shastra and Feng Shuei, also constitute ancient architectural systems based on traditional medicine. An upgrade of long-lasting and well-established traditions could be reinforced by innovative holistic approaches to cities. A protocol based on urban form and qualitative strategies could implement SDG-11 and deepen the sustainability efforts through local-national-global convergent actions, supporting healthy habitats, habitants, and habits.


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