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Publications and Reports

Humanity on the move: Unlocking the transformative power of cities (2016)


The present report outlines the special challenges and opportunities faced in this century by cities from the perspective of the necessary transformation towards sustainability. One characteristic feature of the debate on the search for solutions is the enormous diversity of instruments and solution pathways. Consequently, there can be no blueprint for sustainable urban development. Nevertheless, the report orders, concentrates and emphasizes the recommendations and prioritizes them in two ways:

  1. Key development risks can be identified in the global urbanization surge with its wide range of dynamics.
  2. Necessary paradigm shifts, overarching goals, and appropriate measures with a particularly large leverage effect can be assigned to overcoming these major urban problems and managing the urban transformation towards sustainability. This is not only relevant for planning and governance issues, but also, in many ways, for the activation of the transformative potential of the urban societies themselves.


The report recognises adaptation to climate to climate change as one of the key discussion and transformative action fields in urban sustainability and recommends the development of adaptation strategies as well as mainstreaming adaptation into urban planning.

Reference information



mainstreaming, sustainability, transformative adaptation, urban planning

Climate impacts

Droughts, Extreme Temperatures, Flooding, Ice and Snow, Sea Level Rise, Storms, Water Scarcity


Sector Policies, Adaptation Plans and Strategies



Geographic characterisation


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