Building sustainable and resilient cities

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Building sustainable and resilient cities

Rural exodus, urban overload: finding solutions to the challenges

©IFAD/Mwanzo Millinga

Rome, 31 October 2018 – Held under the theme Better City, Better Life, the UN marks World Cities Day to strengthen cooperation among countries and cities in addressing the challenges of urbanization, while contributing to sustainable urban development.

At a time when more people than ever before are migrating from rural areas around the world to cities, the role urban areas play as drivers of change has constantly evolved as they continue to adapt to social transformations, both locally and internationally.

As the primary causes of population shifts are poverty, hunger and conflict, IFAD is addressing the resulting challenges.

Civil unrest and climate change are also forcing people to uproot, and, as governments struggle to accommodate those fleeing their countries of origin, internal migration is a significantly larger phenomenon.

Scaling-up the appeal of living and working in a rural area

The rise of larger cities and urbanization provide challenges, but also opportunities for smallholders and people living in rural areas. As such, IFAD advocates for rural development as a valid solution to today's migration challenges by investing in decent employment opportunities and bolstering the resilience of rural communities.

The theme of this year's event underlines the need to address the root causes of migration from poverty, food insecurity, inequality, unemployment and a lack of social safety nets.