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WUF Alumni Network

UN Habitat facilitated the formation of the WUF Alumni Network as a vehicle to support UN-Habitat in various endeavors relating to the WUF, especially in the documentation of lessons learned. The network consisting of former and future WUF hosts, was inaugurated in Abu Dhabi, during the WUF10.

Expanding the Impact

The WUF Alumni Network is actively working with UN-Habitat to support future hosts on how best to identify, plan, activate, and measure the impact of WUF legacy projects and offer guidance on organizing a successful forum.

The World Urban Forum has had an amazing journey of two decades. Taking stock since the inaugural WUF session held in Nairobi in 2002, Barcelona in 2004, Vancouver in 2006, Nanjing in 2008, Rio in 2010, Naples in 2012, Medellin in 2014, and Kuala Lumpur in 2018, there is a wealth of experience and best practices that will be harnessed to evaluate and measure the impact and legacy of WUF in future host cities.

The network also promotes among its members the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and urban-related Sustainable Development Goals based on their participation in the Voluntary Local Reviews, National Urban Forums and other key platforms identified by the secretariat.

Alumni activities

WUF Alumni Network Meeting, 6 June 2023

Participants at the WUF Alumni Network meeting in Nairobi, 6 June 2023 © UN-Habitat

The WUF Alumni Network members held its first physical meeting of the year on the sidelines of the UNHA2 on 6 June 2023.  The meeting is part of a series of knowledge exchange discussions aimed at reinforcing a coherent and structured reporting process on the transformative impact of WUFs and support the planning of future forums. 

As the host of WUF12, Egypt welcomed the support of the WUF Alumni Network and looks forward to their input on the conceptualization of key outcomes such as the WUF12 legacy initiatives and the development of the concept note.  Egypt also emphasized the importance for continued communication and consultation on the general preparations for forum with the network and with UN-Habitat.

The WUF secretariat provided an update on the status of preparations for the WUF12, including timelines, opportunities for engagement and benchmarks to be achieved including accessibility and inclusivity.

Former host cities and countries presented overviews of what was achieved in their cities and countries after hosting the WUF. The network also expressed their interest to continue working with UN-Habitat in various initiatives and projects i.e., Voluntary Local Reviews. WUF Alumni member, Ecuador is planning to host a National Urban Forum to mark Urban October celebrations and called on the network’s support in doing so. 

The network agreed to support Egypt in the implementation of WUF12 and the evaluation of its impact; to support the evaluation of WUF and WUF11 which are currently underway; to be part of the initiators of the WUF12 Declared Actions as will be defined during Urban October and to continue refining the network’s activities.

Participants included former hosts of WUF4 – China, WUF5 – Brazil, WUF6 – Italy, WUF7 – Colombia, Habitat III – Ecuador, WUF9 – Malaysia, WUF10 – UAE, WUF11 – Poland and future host of WUF12 – Egypt.

Alumni Activities

The UN-Habitat SDG Arena wows the crowds
UN-Habitat’s SDG Arena at the World Urban Forum: an interactive city that stole the show
Unlocking the power of philanthropy to achieve the SDGs

Past sessions