Coming soon: Urban Living Laboratories guide

By Danny Everett
2 May 2024


In May, GNDR will publish a new resource, Urban Living Laboratories, to help civil society organisations (CSOs) facilitate inclusive decision-making in urban communities with displaced populations.

The guide provides CSOs with a tried and tested approach for developing locally led solutions to the disaster risk challenges that are unique to their communities.

Urban Living Laboratories are real-world settings where communities – both displaced and host – come together, along with other stakeholders such as local government representatives and service providers, to make decisions on the issues that affect them.

They are a space where unique solutions are developed, implemented and evaluated, all with the goal of building the resilience of at-risk communities.

Co-created with and for civil society organisations and displaced urban communities

The approach was trialled by GNDR members across 11 urban areas. Diverse groups of community representatives met regularly to suggest and test practical actions, services, policies, or products to address the difficulties they were facing. Their experiences and reflections helped to make this guide possible.

The GNDR members who contributed to this guide are:

“The ULL approach helped to get the communities together. This participatory approach is good in that it entails getting the views of the community and has helped CDHD gain experiences in addressing the issues affecting the displaced. Past approaches have been to speak in their place and on their behalf, but this is not suitable. ULL supports being with communities and listening to them.”

Alvin Koumbhat, CDHD, GNDR member, Republic of Congo

A timelapse photo of an urban community in Gachie, Nairobi, Kenya

The resource is part of our Making Displacement Safer project, which has been made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) – Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance. 

English, French, Spanish and Portuguese versions of the resource will be freely available for download from the GNDR resource library.

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