Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development (UN Habitat UPSC Notes) | IAS Target IAS Target

Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development-UN Habitat

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) is the United Nations programme for human settlements and sustainable urban development. It was a result of the First UN Conference on Human Settlements and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat I) held in Vancouver, Canada, in 1976. It is a member of the United Nations Development Group. The mandate of UN-Habitat derives from the Habitat Agenda, adopted by the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) in Istanbul, Turkey, in 1996.

Established 1978
Headquarters Nairobi, Kenya
Parent organization United Nations General Assembly
Habitat-I Vancouver, Canada, in 1976
Habitat II Istanbul, Turkey, in 1996


  • UNGA to promote environmentally and socially sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all.
  • The development of sustainable human settlements in an urbanizing world.

Focus area of UN-Habitat

  • Urban legislation, land and governance;
  • Urban research and capacity development.
  • Urban basic services;
  • Housing and slum upgrading;
  • Urban planning and design;
  • Urban economy;
  • Risk reduction and rehabilitation;


The Governing Council of UN-Habitat is the intergovernmental decision-making body of the Programme. Every two years, the Governing Council examines the UN-Habitat's work and relationships with its partners. It is a high-level forum of governments at the ministerial level during which policy guidelines and the organization's budget are created for the next two-year period.
The Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Housing and Urban Development has adopted the New Delhi declaration. This was the first such meeting held to discuss ways of realising the New Urban Agenda that was finalised during the United Nations-Habitat III conference in Quito in October 2016.

Urban plus approach

This approach will address ways to make urban expansion manageable and sustainable. This would mean an emphasis on planning for urban and its adjoining peri-urban and rural areas in an integrated manner.

New Delhi Declaration

It is a global document and it will be localised as per the particular needs of the region and the country. The declaration also stresses on the need to review existing policies and draft new ones that will take forward the aims of the New Urban Agenda. Noting governance as the key to sustainable development, the Declaration stressed on the need for effective governance structures in urban areas.