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Accueil / Africités / Johannesburg 2015 / City to City Learning in Africa

#AF7 City to City Learning in Africa

United Cities and Local Governments & UCLG Africa & MILE & SALAR
Mrs Sara Hoeflich


Cities in the South are experiencing rapid rates of urbanisation and are faced with challenges that their northern counterparts are not currently experiencing ; such as, but not limited to, how to deal with increasingly high populations without adequate services, how to make provision for informal trade, and how to collect revenues from citizens where there is no rates base. UCLG has realised that the knowledge and experience of city staff and leaders is largely untapped and that cities can learn much more from counterparts who have hands-on experience in wrestling with similar challenges.

Learning from the experiences of cities rather than getting advice from development agencies, is more practical and cities are able to share their experiences of what has worked and what has not worked in their particular contexts. UCLG advocates for a “decentralised” approach to learning where local government practitioners learn from the practical experiences and advice of fellow practitioners in other cities that are wrestling with similar challenges in similar contexts.

Learning activities varied widely, from traditional formal courses, through work shadowing and on-the-job training, to online methodologies and can be direct at both elected local leaders and local public administrators. There is also a range of experience in the African context, from SALAR, with its decades of experience in North-South learning activities, to the UCLG-A Academy, whose city learning programme is only just getting underway. What all the participants have in common is a desire to design their work programme in response to meet the changing needs of the cities and local governments with whom they work.
The aim of this EVENT is to gather active members, associations, cities and partners of UCGL that have a particular interest to share their learning activities, highlighting the different methodologies, lessons learnt and plans on how to cooperate. The event focuses on the experiences of associations and cities active in southern Africa.
The session will :

  • Present the main methodologies and formats used in decentralized cooperation, with a particular focus on the example of Nampula in order to promote city-to-city learning as a permanent pattern and the creation of a learning system within local and regional governments. The session should also help to identify cities, associations and networks to foster exchanges among different stakeholders that promote decentralized cooperation and strengthen the capacities of local authorities.
  • Review the methodologies implemented for peer learning and present conclusions of learning experiences between cities and associations.
  • Discuss the possibility of new learning experiences with possible peer cities and networks. Also explore a new way of funding for the UCLG’s learning agenda, in particular the African chapter.


Moderator : Sogen Moodley, Senior Manager, Municipal Institute of Learning

UCLG, UCLG-A, SALAR, MILE, GIZ (Mozambique)/Cities Alliance
Mayors of the cities of Nampula, Blantyre

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