To assist governmental and non-governmental policy makers and operational officials in jointly initiating more effective housing programmes for the urban poor, ESCAP with inputs from UN-HABITAT implemented the UN Development Account project ‘Housing the Poor in Urban Economies’ between 2004 and 2008. Main outcomes of the project’s country-level track (in Cambodia, Mongolia Nepal and Timor Leste) included increased awareness and enhanced capacity of different stakeholders on low-income housing issues through training programmes, pilot projects, strengthening of urban resource centers, study visits and advisory services. The regional track of the project consisted of developing the online Regional Resource Facility on Housing the Urban Poor (www.housing-the-urban-poor.net), which promotes knowledge transfer on low-income housing.
SUDU continues to maintain and develop the Regional Resource Facility, which comprises Quick Guides for Policy Makers, a searchable annotated list of agencies and organizations, an annotated bibliography, a self-administered online training course, various materials for trainers and a discussion forum. Much of the material is organized around the Quick Guide themes of urbanization, low-income housing, land, eviction, housing finance, community organization and rental housing. SUDU plans to focus on developing further self-administered and moderated online training courses and other materials and making them available in local languages. A second series of Quick Guides including such topics as climate change and disaster preparedness in poor urban communities is under consideration.