The Sustainable Development Committee (SDC)
The question of promoting sustainable urban development
More than half of humanity – 54% of the world’s population – live in cities these days and the
number is continuously rising as cities are hubs for ideas, business, culture, science,
productivity, social development and much more. But rapid urbanization and population growth
in cities have brought enormous challenges to our world since governments struggle to
accommodate the rising population in these spaces.
Extreme poverty and inequalities are one of those major issues in urban areas as more than
880 million people live in slums and don’t have access to fundamental basic services,
predominantly in developing regions. Furthermore, increasing environmental pollution caused
by industries in urban areas, inadequate infrastructure and fragile resilience against natural
disasters are serious concerns as well. But it also involves the creation of green public spaces,
investment into public transportation and accessibility to healthcare and housing, as well as
the protection of historic and cultural sights.
The above shows that the topic of sustainable urban development encloses a range of socio-
economic and environmental issues.
The gravity of this issue has long been recognized by the global community and efforts were
made to address it. For instance, “Sustainable Cities” are one of the 17 sustainable
development goals of the UN ́s “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. Global
commitment to the issue can also be seen in the “New Urban Agenda” which was agreed upon
during the 2016 Habitat III conference - the UN ́s third conference on housing and sustainable
urban development. The subject of sustainable urbanization was also taken upon in the 2015
Paris climate agreement.
In this committee, we want to discuss how global efforts for sustainable urbanization can be
further expanded and implemented effectively; How we can make our cities more inclusive,
safe, resilient, environmental friendly and sustainable. Simply put, how our cities can become
a desirable place to live in for everyone, with respect to social, economic and environmental