Sustainable Urban Development – Smart Cities (SUD-SC)

Project description

Title: Sustainable Urban Development – Smart Cities (SUD-SC)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Indien
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA)
Overall term: 2018 to 2021

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Over the past 20 years, India’s urban population has grown by 180 million to currently 450 million people. This rapid process of urbanisation will further accelerate in future. By 2030, India’s urban population is expected to have grown by another 140 million. This means that 40 per cent of India’s population will be living in urban areas by then. 

Cities thus have tremendous potential to contribute to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). At the same time, the process of urbanisation creates complex challenges such as providing adequate housing and delivering basic services like drinking water, sanitation, solid waste management, and urban sewage systems. This also applies to the participation of the urban population in decision-making processes. 

Overall and at all levels, the technical and institutional capacity and practical experience with sustainable urban development as defined by the 2030 Agenda and, above all, knowledge of evidence-based integrated spatial planning, are very limited. The national ministry, the states and cities often have limited capacity to apply sustainable urban development concepts to the delivery of basic urban services and provision of housing.


Responsible national, state and municipal institutions in India have applied concepts for sustainable urban development and for providing urban basic services and housing.

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The project follows a multi-level, multi-actor approach, strengthening actors at national, state and municipal levels. At the national level, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) and its subordinate agencies are supported in developing the National Orientation Framework for Sustainable Urban Development in a practical, effective manner, focused on the implementation of the principles of the 2030 Agenda. This is achieved by preparing and disseminating locally developed concepts and drawing up framework guidelines for sustainable urban development. At state level, administrative institutions are empowered and supported in optimising structures and capacities for the strategic management of local urban development and the implementation of funding programmes. In addition, continuing education institutions at state level are supported in developing practice-oriented training programmes. At local level, the project empowers municipalities to implement integrated spatial urban development planning, monitor SDGs and urban development processes, apply evidence-based planning and carry out measures to improve the housing situation and basic services. 

In the three partner cities, the GOPA Infra consortium supports the implementation of the project at local level over the entire term of the project.

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  • ‘EnteKochi’ (in English: ‘MyKochi’): A city-wide participation process over several weeks to develop a vision for the future sustainable urban development of the city of Kochi (around 600,000 people) in the state of Kerala in the south of India.
  • Advisory on Public and Community Toilets: This advisory was developed in cooperation with the MoHUA. It can be used by all Indian cities for the purpose of planning and managing easily accessible, gender-sensitive and functional public sanitation facilities.

Additional information