Strengthening Systems of Secondary Cities


Rooted in the Swiss principle of subsidiarity the programme will enable local government authorities in secondary cities affected by migration and forced displacement to engage with key stakeholders, including the private sector, to consolidate their urban planning and management skills while securing access to financial and technical resources. It will further strengthen cities’ advocacy capacities to make their voices heard in national, regional and multilateral dialogues with a view to disseminate and learn about best practices on migrants’ integration. 

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Global
Guatemala
Migration
Employment & economic development
Governance
Migration generally (development aspects and partnerships)
Urban development
Decentralisation
01.05.2022 - 31.10.2026
CHF  8’800’000
Background Migration and forced displacement are global phenomena, but their effects are mostly felt at the local level, particularly in cities, which are primary destinations for migrants and forcibly displaced persons. Rural-urban migration is leading to rapid increases in the populations of secondary cities in low-income countries, causing massive urban expansion.  Between 2000 and 2020, less-developed countries increased their urban populations by 1.39 billion (70 per cent) (UN, 2018). 70 percent of the world’s forcibly displaced persons, internally displaced persons (IDPs), and stateless people reside in cities. Both in Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, internal migration equally generates pressures on land, housing, services, social cohesion, and labour markets, both in transit and final destination cities. In this context, cities have emerged as central actors - and visionary leaders - in addressing migration and displacement issues. From a position at the periphery just a few years ago, mayors are now widely recognized for delivering solutions, driving progress, and asserting political will where others have stepped back. They provide a critical perspective that, until recently, was missing in the international deliberations that determine the way that migration and displacement issues are governed. But while cities bring important insight into the local stakes of migration and displacement and to the practical implications of national policies, there are still barriers that make it difficult for cities to engage in and influence policy decisions.
Objectives Migrants and host communities benefit from equal access to quality public services, labour market integration and economic opportunities.
Target groups

Ultimate beneficiaries are migrants, displaced persons, and host communities.

Intermediary beneficiaries will be the (secondary) city stakeholders, local authorities and civil society representing both host and migrant communities, the private sector, and public opinion influencers.

Medium-term outcomes

1.     Improved urban planning of secondary cities in an effort to strengthen local inclusion of migrants and forcibly displaced persons. 

2.     Secondary cities capacitated and resourced to provide inclusive services for migrants, displaced persons and host communities.

3.     Increased engagement of cities in global migration and displacement diplomacy and local implementation of global migration and displacement goals.

Results

Expected results:  

·       Target cities of Phase I remain the focus for consolidation of outcomes 1 and 2 in Phase II.

·       9 secondary cities received technical advisory to design and implement tailor-made urban expansion plans.

·       Two knowledge hubs and one practitioner network on enhanced urban planning, forecasting and adaptation tentatively in Ethiopia and Uganda.

·       Eight urban projects designed and implemented in partnership with diverse city stakeholders. Projects focus on proactive management of migration and urbanization, development of municipal reception centres for migrants and voluntary registration services, advisory for newcomers on access to basic services and decent work opportunities.

·       3 Secondary cities have access and are formally represented in 8 state-led processes at the regional and global level and will contribute to 45 policy statements/contributions and 90 global dialogues on topics such as inclusive pandemic response, climate migration, and migration governance.

·       Cities will inform 30 global positions on migration and displacement issues and facilitate 30-50 city pledges to advance global goals on migration and displacement (30-50% of which from non-megacities).


Results from previous phases:   In Phase I, nine secondary cities across five countries in the Horn of Africa, Tunisia, and Guatemala partnered to design and test local migration management approaches. Partnerships were built with three leading knowledge brokers – the World Bank, the Refugee Studies Centre at Oxford University, and the urban expansion planning team of New York University. Phase I demonstrated that secondary cities are at the forefront of managing migration dynamics and that local actors can influence the content of global positions on migration and displacement ensuring that they reflect on-the-ground priorities. The MMC’s facilitation of global dialogues between cities and global actors both contributed to influencing national policy positions on issues of global concern, to facilitating the flow of technical assistance from UN providers to cities. Concrete results from Phase I include the MMC’s mobilization of a coalition of 15 US mayors to engage in a dialogue with the US government on climate migration, the drafting of urban expansion plans, the creation of resource and registration centres for migrants in secondary cities, the improvement of settlements for internally displaced people (IDPs), the construction of local markets for refugee communities and the facilitation of labour market opportunities for migrants. Overall 44’000 migrants and host communities participated in these activities while 170’000 households benefited directly.


Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Project partners Contract partner
International or foreign NGO
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • Other international or foreign NGO North
  • - UNOPS, Cities Alliance (CA) - Mayors Migration Council (MMC)


Coordination with other projects and actors

Phase II is co-funded by SDC’s LAC Division and synergies will be developed with the programme on inclusive urbanization (7F-10868.01).

The programme will seek to build synergies with UNCDF and ACUMEN/RIN in the Horn of Africa. (Financing Durable Solutions for Forcibly Displaced People (FDSI) 7F-10857.01 in the Horn of Africa)

The program will be closely coordinated with SECO and its experience in urban contexts.

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    8’800’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    2’284’886