How can appropriate housing enhance human development?

A decent home.

Human development is a complex term that has been used in multiple contexts and in many different ways, relating to a wide range of issues. From the definition of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (which defines human development as concerning from physiological needs to self-actualization, in a pyramid-style hierarchy) to more complex perspectives, human development concerns the rights of people, which go from basic physical needs to intangible aspects such as dignity and community interaction. [Read more…]

The sustainable renewal of Roma settlements model

A Roma family builds their own house.

Roma people are among the most vulnerable social groups in Serbia. It is estimated that there are around 600 Roma settlements in Serbia today, with nearly 380,000 Roma living in them. Housing conditions in these settlements are below the public infrastructural and sanitary minimum. Instead of living in houses made of solid construction materials, the families live in makeshift temporary housing units with no water, bathrooms/toilets or electricity in them. [Read more…]

The heat is on

Warm and energy efficient homes for our future.

In April 2012, over 20 specialists on alternative heating systems, energy efficiency, housing and community development, financial services, and business development representing the private sector, banking, NGOs, government administration and UNDP (as the organizer of the event) discussed and developed technical solutions and commercially viable and replicable business models addressing rural residential heating. Considering that almost 50% of total building stock is used by residential single family houses, this is a vast but often overlooked market. [Read more…]

Teaming up to address disaster relief at the World Urban Forum

Habitat houses in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) will jointly participate in the next edition of the World Urban Forum in Naples through the organisation of one of the events. This collaboration is related to the co-organization, in partnership with others agencies such as the UNDP and the UNECE, of several regional Housing Forums around the world (Pacific, Americas, and Europe & Central Asia) during the last 4 years. [Read more…]