Environment & Urbanization

World leading environmental and urban studies journal

Better Cities after COVID-19

Alice Sverdlik, Anna Walnycki




This issue paper proposes a novel framework to support a transformative recovery in cities of the global South. COVID-19 has created a critical juncture in the development of cities in the global South. Local governments and grassroots organizations have led to urban responses that have been pivotal in shaping the pandemic’s outcomes for low-income residents. Yet policymakers have had only a limited focus on the pandemic’s urban dimensions.

Now, holistic interventions will be vital to address the complex exclusions and risks facing low-income urban residents. Synthesizing evidence on the pandemic’s impacts in urban areas, this issue paper outlines a set of policy priorities and develops a framework with guiding principles for co-creating inclusive, forward-looking pathways out of the crisis.

The framework will help key stakeholders – including health officials, local and national governments, and international agencies – create an equitable and transformative urban recovery.


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