Engaging Communities in Urban Areas (Urban webinar #7)

15 Apr 2014
12:00 - 14:00, GMT

This webinar brought together three operationally experienced panellists to discuss the topic of engaging communities in urban areas. The panel of speakers addressed questions submitted by attendees in advance as well as during the webinar, including:

  • What does 'community' mean in urban contexts?
  • What types of engagement are possible in urban areas and what examples of good practice exist?
  • How can humanitarians use common needs within an urban population to facilitate community cohesion?
  • How can working with local organisations/CBOs improve engagement in urban areas?
  • How can humanitarians ensure accountability given the scale of an affected urban population?
  • How can better coordination support humanitarian response in urban areas and what could this look like?


Jan Meeuwissen, Risk Reduction and Rehabilitation Coordinator, UN Habitat

  • Managed a UN Habitat community development programme for 10 years, which pioneered new ways of working with communities and local governments across 3 continents and developed methodologies to put communities in charge of their development
  • These methodologies were then implemented by UN Habitat in post-disaster urban settings including several mega disasters in Asia
  • UN Habitat has since developed the people-centred approach, which it uses in development and post-disaster contexts

Jerome Lebleu, Head of the Urban Response Technical Department, Global Communities

  • Will share experiences from Global Communities’ KATYE project in Haiti which mobilised the Ravine Pintade neighbourhood to map, design and implement shelter and infrastructure reconstruction
  • During this project, Global Communities had to rethink their approach to community leadership and gain community trust
  • Global Communities is currently implementing PREKAD, a rebuilding project which has established community reconstruction centres

Karen Jacobsen, Coordinator, Joint IDP Profiling Service (JIPS) 

  • Karen is on leave from the Feinstein International Centre where she is the research Director and leads the Refugees & Forced Migration Program
  • She is currently coordinating JIPS
  • JIPS is an inter-agency service provides technical support at field level to agencies and local organisations on IDP profiling