Innovation Report 2020

Civil Society Innovation and Urban Inclusion Report 2020

Civil Society Innovation and Urban Inclusion Podcast Series 2020

Project video – South African Urban Food and Farming Trust: Urban Social Farming in South Africa

Project video – Urban Refugees: Empowering Refugee-Led Organisations

2020 ‘Civil Society Innovation and Urban Inclusion’

Our 2020 Innovation Report highlights successful innovations in complex urban contexts to deliver inclusive solutions for marginalised communities in cities.

The accelerating population shift from rural areas to urban areas, and accompanying social and economic changes, is one of the most critical global trends influencing the direction of other megatrends. This fast-moving phenomenon will increasingly impact global sustainable development efforts, and the work of  civil society organisations (CSOs) for decades ahead.

The complex system of powerful stakeholders and rapid speed of change in urban contexts pose a number of unique innovation drivers for CSOs, with their traditional programming experience in rural settings and typical advocacy focus at national level. These factors drive the need for new operational models, partnerships, skills and capacities to strengthen impact for marginalised urban communities. Peer learning can help share resources and reduce risk, but there is still limited exchange amongst CSOs on working in complex urban settings.

There is no single publication which takes a broad, systematic sector overview – including human or environmental rights and national CSOs – collating and contrasting roles and approaches to co-produce new insights, provide a common learning agenda, and communicate effectively to wider audiences about the urban impacts these organisations are achieving. Our 2020 Innovation Report aims to fill this gap.

About our Innovation Reports

We believe one of our roles is to bring international civil society sector innovations into focus. There is a significant opportunity for organisations to benefit more from the lessons others have learned, or are in the process of addressing, particularly in the context of complex common external challenges. Our reports aim to support this.


This publication and website is kindly by the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and its Strong Cities 2030 initiative. Promoting global collaboration and knowledge sharing for sustainable urban development.

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