The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-HABITAT, is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It is mandated to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. UN-Habitat has a sharp focus on urban poverty and, in particular, slums as the most visible manifestation of poverty within the overall urbanization process.
It is working to expand understanding of urban development, shelter and poverty and facilitate the tracking of progress in implementing the Habitat Agenda. It also sets out norms for sustainable urbanization and urban poverty reduction and is promulgating these through two global campaigns and a number of global programmes including technical cooperation to link these norms to poverty reduction activities on the ground. Finally it provides innovative financing for urbanization and specific shelter needs of the urban poor, and works to leverage resources and coordinate international programme activities that work toward similar ends through strategic partnerships.
A key function of UN-HABITAT is the monitoring of global trends and conditions and the assessment of progress towards target 11 of the MDGs and the implementation of the Habitat Agenda at the international, regional, national and local levels. UN-Habitat’s Global Urban Observatory addresses the urgent need to improve the worldwide base of urban knowledge by helping governments, local authorities and civil society organizations develop and apply policy-oriented urban indicators, statistics and other urban information.
UN-HABITAT works with local and national urban observatories (60 in Africa) providing them with guidelines and training on how to collect and use data in its area of competence. The organization also prepares guidelines and tools for data collection and analysis, making them available to countries. It also conducts training workshops on data collection for Urban Indicators and localizing the Millennium Declaration Goals to urban and city level.
Received 2008. Update 2010 pending