The United Nations estimates that between 2015 and 2050, an additional 790 million people will reside in Africa’s urban areas. This implies that our Continent will play host to over 12 cities with between 5 to 10 million people by 2030, from three (Cairo, Kinshasa and Lagos) in 2014. The institutional capacity to cope with the attendant need for basic infrastructure, housing and social facilities for residents is already under considerable strain. This is evidenced by the relatively high percentage of African urban dwellers living in slum conditions-the UN Habitat projects that more than 50% of Africa’s population are likely to live in slums by 2025.
On the other hand, addressing these urbanization issues will unleash vast opportunities that will propel and consolidate Africa’s growth and development. To achieve this, it is imperative that impactful, trans-disciplinary is carried out in the short term; and that such research outcomes are tied into governance and policy frameworks to ensure implementation and impact.
The Centre for Excellence for Urbanization and Habitable Cities is a research hub for bringing together researchers from other African Countries to address the salient and often intractable problems associated with urbanization in African Cities, therefore impacting on spatial efficiencies, the well-being of urban dwellers and city sustainability.
It is coming under the designate of the existing University of Lagos Centre for Housing Studies (UNILAG-CHS) http://chsunilag.com/ which was established in December 2013 as a result of MOU between the University of Lagos, Nigerian-UK Housing Society (NUHS) and its partner, UK’s Chartered Institute of Housing, England (CIH). The Centre’s core activities are in Housing research, urban regeneration and advocacy, Postgraduate education and capacity building for practitioners. Activities are centred around multi-disciplinary groups from academia and industry.