UiTM Collaborates with UN-Habitat to Champion Sustainable Urbanization

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The Center of Studies for Town and Regional Planning, FSPU, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) in conjunction with the celebration of 100 years planning profession (100PBM) in Malaysia organized a webinar which featured the honorable speaker, Dato’ Seri TPr Maimunah Mohd Sharif, the Executive Director of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat). She is the first Asian woman to serve as Executive Director of UN-Habitat.

The session held on the 14th January 2021 began with a welcoming speech by Professor TPr Dr Jamalunlaili Abdullah, Dean of Faculty of Architecture, Planning and Surveying, UiTM.

Participants were amongst students, staff, and audience from private and government institutions who had joined the one-hour webinar session via Cisco Webex and YouTube online platform. The overwhelming response stands to speak for itself on the subject’s interest with more than 500 participants joined the session.

Dato’ Seri Maimunah Mohd Sharif shared how UN-Habitat works with cities and people in promoting sustainable and inclusive urbanization. She highlighted the challenges of unsustainable trends. With 55% of the world’s population living in urban areas, 1.8 billion people live in inadequate housing conditions globally, 1 billion people live in informal settlements and slums, and 100 million people are homeless. Issues such as health and climate change were also put forward.

The webinar session also elaborated further on the need to achieve 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities, and tackle climate change while ensuring that no one is left behind.

Further, Dato’ Seri TPr Maimunah Mohd Sharif emphasized the New Urban Agenda (NUA), based on the theme – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, Partnership – as an action-oriented document that sets global standards of achievement in sustainable urban development. The document readdresses the way cities are planned, designed, financed, developed, governed, and managed. NUA builds cooperation with committed partners at all levels to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

Dato’ Seri TPr Maimunah Mohd Sharif ended the session by prompting the audience that ‘Integrated approach and people-centered process are key to achieving sustainable urbanization’.