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Engagement opportunities and resources under the Nairobi work programme 

Human settlements is a key area of the Nairobi Work Programme, as mandated by decision 17/CP.19; SBSTA 44; and SBSTA 48.

Urban population is expected to grow by 2.5 billion by 2050 and over 90 percent of this growth will take place in Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean. The world's urban centres (especially in developing countries) are already vulnerable to the advanced impacts of climate change and other natural and human-made hazards particularly in coastal areas, delta regions and Small Island Developing States.

In response to this growing vulnerability, climate-resilient development in villages, towns and cities of all sizes is crucial to adapting to climate change. Adaptation actions in human settlements range from nature-based to infrastructure-based measures. However, adaptation is more than just physical ‘climate proofing’; it is a dynamic, iterative, cross-sectoral and open-ended planning and implementation process that requires political, institutional and financial support, as well as behavioural change.

Collaboration, engagement and partnership

Governments agreed to undertake concrete activities addressing human settlements under the NWP in order to inform adaptation planning and actions at the regional, national and subnational level. In response, a range of activities have been undertaken under the NWP to advance action through knowledge in the thematic area with some in progress.

Applying an iterative and progressive knowledge-to-action methodology, the secretariat collaborated with renowned organizations and institutes, including United Nations agencies, programmes and offices, as well as other relevant international organizations, academic institutions, and institutes to advance actions.


The NWP knowledge-to-action approach

The table below highlights relevant outputs on human settlements; and work in progress corresponding to different steps of the NWP knowledge-to-action methodology.



Step 1: Scoping

 Step 2: Engage with expert groupsa

Step 3:  Refine knowledge 

Step 4: Co-design actions

Step 5: Report and disseminate findings


Step 6: Facilitate partnerships to mobilize support

  • Focus for 2019
Figure 1: The NWP knowledge-to-action approach
Get involved 
  1. Share your knowledge resources on biodiversity and climate change adaptation with a focus on forests and grassland ecosystems on the Adaptation Knowledge Portal including case studies, tools and methods, and other resources
  2. Make an action pledge to support adaptation planning and implementation related to biodiversity and climate change
  3. Send us news about upcoming publications and events at
  4. Become a NWP partner organization