Strengthening Urban Engagement of Universities in Asia and Africa

  • Burnside, Neil (Co-investigator)
  • Osborne, Michael (Principal Investigator)
  • Hirsu, Lavina (Co-investigator)
  • Borkowska, Katarzyna (Co-investigator)
  • Houston, Muir (Co-investigator)

Project: Projects from Previous Employment

Project Details


The overall aim of the SUEUAA project which ran from 2017-2019 was to strengthen the contribution of Higher Education Institutions in six cities in global south countries, (Iran, Iraq, Philippines, South Africa, Tanzania and Zimbabwe) to the development of urban infrastructure across a range of inter-linked domains. We were concerned with how universities could through better engagement with city stakeholders contribute to improving physical, economic, social, health, environmental and cultural infrastructures that make cities resilient to natural and human-made disasters.

Our intention was that there should be three main forms of outcome.

The first of these was concerned with the lessons learnt from the current ways in which HEIs engage with their city stakeholders in order to contribute to sustainable development and how this compares with needs and demands of communities. This would serve as the basis for recommendations to universities, cities and education policymakers for new forms of provision and training. A better understanding by HEIs of needs would allow the exploration of new structures to deliver services to cities, based not on supply, but demand.

Secondly, universities within each of the cities were provided with the opportunity to re-assess the roles of academics and to create new forms of reward linked to the capacity of staff to make contributions to city development.

Thirdly, we sought to ensure that individual academics engaged within the project, both from the north and south would benefit from an increased understanding of the various forms of challenge that exist in DAC countries and would form part of a development cadre of experts in the field.


British Academy award CI170271 under the Cities & Infrastructure Programme
Effective start/end date1/11/1731/05/19

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals


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