Handbook 10: Creating change through on-the-ground implementation
Protecting urban natural assets in sub-Saharan Africa

As discussed in previous handbooks, a fundamental shift in urban planning and decision-making is required in order to more effectively protect and revitalise natural assets in African cities. However, alongside such top-level transformation, there is an urgent need for on-the-ground action, too. The evidence suggests that practical interventions that have positive impacts on citizens’ lives and living conditions do the best job of encouraging behaviour change and inspiring community members to take ownership of (and responsibility for) nature1. Often, residents need to see change unfolding in front of them – to personally experience the benefits it brings – in order to truly understand the value of it. Small-scale implementation projects are also invaluable in that they prove that sustainable development is feasible – they show local officials, city planners and NGOs what’s possible in tangible terms, thereby inspiring and encouraging further action.


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