The last day of the First Annual Urban Conference kicked off with the topic “Financing the Sustainable Urban Development Agenda” hosted by BCAS. The topic’s main focus was to uphold clear and sustainable financing in the urban context. The session was chaired by Dr. Atiq Rahman executive director at BCAS and the chief guest for this session was Dr. Samsul Alam, member, Planning Commission. The panelists answered the questions on how government sectors are planning the financial sectors to adopt environmental practices at the same time major areas regarding planning issues were discussed. Dr. Alam emphasized that development is a destructive creation and highlighted proper emphasizes to mitigate problems related to this is important. He also highlighted any project that costs more than the economic cost of a society should be banned. Some Crucial suggestions regarding Transparency of financial sectors were highlighted by panelist Catherine Cecil, Team Leader, PROKAS pressed that financial transparency on every sector is essential to have solvency and to help out urban poor. The morning plenary was followed by a tea break where participants had an opportunity to network between panelists and participants.
The second part of the day started with two parallel sessions. BRAC hosted “Realities of the Urban Poor” Tackling Challenges and Leveraging Opportunities”. This session gave scope for recognizing the gaps and needs of urban poor and discussed about comprehensive directions in formulating and selecting more effective interventions for more inclusiveness development. Tamzidul Islam from BRAC gave importance to social, economic and ecological sectors in the urban context. His solutions consisted of rental basis urban housing, public private partnership, and House loans for long term and with low interest, Introduce lad readjustment technique and establishing control over rent. Professor Ainun Nishat Professor Emeritus, Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research, BRAC University highlighted “Resilience” as a buzzword and instead any development initiatives in the current status quo should revolve around the term “Transformative society.”
The second parallel session “Building Community Engagement to Enhance Urban ResilienceHost: ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, South Asia”. ICLEI has developed a tool kit – ICLEI ACCCRN Process (IAP) which is being used by local governments to develop their own climate resilience strategy and protect themselves against impacts of climate change. ICLEI successfully promoted their tool kit to assess the cities vulnerability. One success story was shared by Md. Zulfikar Ali, Mayor, Mongla Port Municipality, Bangladesh. He shared with the participants about the success story of rainwater harvest implementation in his city. The session was conducted by Ms. Bedoshruti Sadhukhan, Programme Coordinator (Sustainability Management), ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, South Asia. The day’s session ended with a lunch networking session where the outcomes of the day’s findings were discussed.
The conference update was contributed by Adnan Qader, Tasfia Tasnin, Ishita Rahman