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The Future of Asian and Pacific Cities report 2019 makes the case for four priorities and four approaches to realize a sustainable urban future in Asia and the Pacific. A sustainable future occurs when urban and territorial planning lays a foundation; resilience guards against future risk; smart cities deploy the best technology for the job; and financing tools help pay for it all. Getting these essentials right in Asian and Pacific cities today is vital in order to adapt to the demands of tomorrow and to deliver on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda. Explore more about it through the interactive tool.

Voluntary Local Review (VLR) is a process through which sub-national governments undertake a voluntary review of their progress towards delivering the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Building on the Asia-Pacific Regional Guidelines on Voluntary Local Reviews, this portal takes users through an interactive journey of the different phases of the VLR development process.

Plastic pollution is entering our oceans at an alarming rate, damaging the marine environment and endangering local livelihoods. UN ESCAP’s new eLearning course - Cities and Marine Plastic Pollution: Building a Circular Economy will support capacity building for cities in the Asia-Pacific to strengthen plastic waste management. Our course shares the latest scientific knowledge and policy approaches for measuring and managing plastic pollution from land-based sources. It aims to equip decision makers and urban practitioners with the tools needed to tackle plastic waste for the achievement of local, national and regional goals related to sustainable development.

Course development was led by UN ESCAP in collaboration with Ocean Conservancy, UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO), Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the International Solid Waste Association (ISWA), Plymouth Marine Lab, Wageningen University & Research, Keio University and the University of Leeds.

Current development patterns and unplanned growth in many cities in the Asia-Pacific Region have contributed to significant and unsustainable use of resources and unmanageable production of waste and pollution. To address these challenges and draw upon the opportunities cities provide, especially as catalysts of change to achieve the SDGs, UN ESCAP and UN-Habitat, in partnership with stakeholders in five pilot cities, developed a self-paced eLearning course – Localizing the SDGs through SURM – to strengthen urban stakeholders capacity to understand the processes and benefits of collaborative governance, integrated analysis and planning, and evidence-based decision-making. This course includes a framework, guidelines, tools, and step-by-step approach to help cities mainstream and accelerate adoption of the SDGs into local action, drawing on experience from the Localizing the 2030 Agenda in Asian & Pacific Cities Project. Course development was led by UN ESCAP in collaboration with UN-Habitat and stakeholders from the pilot cities.

Through the view of a real urban scene from the air, you will explore different challenges which cities face, especially in the Asia-pacific region, and how cities can address these urban issues.