Sustainable cities and human settlements

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11 aims to "Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable." This goal acknowledges the growing importance of urban areas, as it's projected that by 2050, nearly 70% of the world's population will live in cities. Consequently, cities bear significant implications for sustainability, economic growth, and societal wellbeing.

Inclusivity is a key feature of sustainable cities. This refers to equitable access to opportunities, public services, and amenities, regardless of a person's background or circumstances. It implies the availability of affordable and adequate housing, thus addressing issues of homelessness and substandard living conditions.

Safety in cities means ensuring urban environments that protect their inhabitants from both physical harm and psychological distress. This involves addressing crime rates, traffic accidents, and potential hazards from poor infrastructure, while also considering the impacts of noise, pollution, and overcrowdedness on mental health.

Resilience is another important aspect, particularly in the face of climate change. Resilient cities can withstand and quickly recover from shocks such as natural disasters or economic crises. This involves aspects such as resilient infrastructure, disaster risk reduction strategies, and adaptive capacities at the community level.

Sustainability, finally, requires cities to function in a way that doesn't compromise future generations' ability to meet their own needs. This includes sustainable urban planning to reduce environmental impact, promote energy efficiency, and conserve resources. It also considers the importance of green spaces for biodiversity and the wellbeing of urban residents.

SDG 11 is interconnected with many other SDGs. For example, sustainable urban transport systems contribute to SDG 13 (Climate Action) by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, ensuring access to green and public spaces supports SDG 3 (Good Health and Well-being).

Achieving sustainable cities and human settlements requires cooperation and participation from various stakeholders, including government authorities, urban planners, businesses, and citizens. Through their collective efforts, cities can be transformed into hubs of sustainability, resilience, and inclusivity, contributing significantly towards the realization of the SDGs.


Ali Jalali, Phillip B. Roös, Murray Herron, Paras Sidiqui, Emma Duncan, Chapter 24 - Predictive modeling for reforestation of cities to mitigate climate change impacts, Editor(s): Zaheer Allam, Didier Chabaud, Catherine Gall, Florent Pratlong, Carlos Moreno, Resilient and Sustainable Cities, Elsevier, 2023, Pages 441-456, ISBN 9780323917186,

This chapter advances UN SDG goals 11, 13, and 3 by discussing how urban reforestation could be among effective options for mitigating urban warming and climate change, further aiding planners and policy makers to create more sustainable and liveable cities.

City and Environment Interactions, Volume 17, January 2023, 100093

The research promotes not only a transition towards sustainability but also the emergence of a city-river balance.
This chapter contributes to SDG 6 by introducing projects to improve the situation of drought-affected cities by maintaining and saving local water resources.
This article supports SDG 6, 3, 9 by exploring the diversity and ecology of freshwater diatom as bioindicators of 6 major freshwater ponds of Kanyakumari district, Tamilnadu
Food systems are a major driver of environmental change, responsible for rapid deforestation, water scarcity, and an estimated 30%–34% of global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. Findings in this paper point to the capacity of plant-sourced food consumption to minimize environmental harm without necessarily jeopardizing nutrient availability in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). Local agriculture can contribute to food system sustainability by producing diversified plant-sourced foods, cornerstones of many traditional food customs, and mitigating the impacts of industrialized livestock operations and imported, animal-centric dietary habits.

Visualization Techniques for Climate Change with Machine Learnng and Artificial Intelligence, Sukanya S, Sabu Joseph, 2023, Pages 55-76

This chapter contributes to SDG 6 by describing the potential impacts of climate change on water resources.
This chapter advances UN SGD goals 11 and 13 by providing introductory knowledge on urbanization trends and their implications in the context of global environmental change, as well as highlighting major challenges to be addressed and the need for disruptive smart solutions.
This chapter advances UN SGD goals 11 and 13 by introducing the concepts of climate change adaptation and mitigation and depicting the scale of challenges that need to be addressed.

Blockchain-Based Systems for the Modern Energy Grid, 2022, Pages 115-134

This chapter supports SDG goals 7 and 9 by proposing new ways of using blockchain to support renewable energy market.
This Article supports SDG 11 by investigating the impact of environmental sustainability in a developing nation (South Africa) through information and communication.