The UrbanShift City Academy offers city officials and urban practitioners open access to eight self-paced online courses, focused on urban planning themes that are critical to shaping low-carbon, climate-resilient and inclusive cities. The courses have been developed by experts at the UN Environment Programme, World Resources Institute, C40 Cities, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, and other global partners. Sign up for updates.

Featured Courses

Green & Thriving Neighbourhoods

Integrated Climate Action Planning

Accommodating Urban Growth

Accessing Urban Climate Finance

UrbanShift’s work can be divided into eight broad topics, which represent the scope of our local projects as well as the global capacity-building activities. For each of these topics, our team’s technical experts have put together a robust 8-hour curriculum, consisting of peer-reviewed knowledge, research and case studies presented in an interactive learning format.  The aim is to give you, the user, a practical understanding of each topic, so that you’re able to apply the learnings to your work and help your city to advance toward a green, climate-resilient future.

Integrated Climate Action Planning

Cities are at the forefront of the climate crisis. In this course, you will learn how cities can tackle climate change through mitigation and adaptation, and develop a science-based climate action plan inspired by the best practices of cities around the world. Learn more.

Initiating a circular economic system in cities can bring a wealth of economic, social, and environmental gains. In this course, learn how your city can benefit from moving away from the “take-make-waste” economy and implementing circular strategies that restore the value of used resources, create green, local jobs and reduce pollution and waste. Learn more.

Accessing Urban Climate Finance

Building resilient, low-carbon infrastructure systems is essential for cities to adapt to urban expansion and climate change. The goal of this course is to increase the capacity of city-level actors to plan, design and access finance for sustainable and climate-resilient urban infrastructure projects. Learn more.

Neighbourhoods can pursue integrated urban planning at a smaller, less complex scale than cities. Explore how to develop safe, compact and vibrant communities in your city with an integrated vision, a set of design strategies, and a step-by-step delivery roadmap. Learn more.

Nature-Based Solutions

Nature-based Solutions (Nbs) and green infrastructure provide cost-effective and resource-efficient approaches to increase a city's capacity to respond to disasters and shocks. Explore the key elements needed to implement contextually appropriate, multifunctional and equitable NbS in global South cities. Learn more.

Local governments in the global South must ensure safe and affordable housing for the urban poor while reducing the cost of new public infrastructure, minimizing future emissions, conserving key natural assets and surrounding biodiversity, and enhancing urban resilience. Learn more.

This participatory management process advances a city's ability to work across agencies, jurisdictions and sectors to solve key planning and environmental challenges while maximizing efficiencies. Learn more.

Through careful land use planning, habitat restoration and animal-friendly infrastructure, cities can prosper while harboring local biodiversity and reducing negative impacts on regional and global biodiversity. This course provides learners with tools to integrate nature-supportive actions into wider urban practices. Learn more.

CITY ACADEMY at a glance

Targeted at city-level decision-makers and urban practitioners, UrbanShift’s online City Academy features actionable research and inspiring case studies from cities and institutions around the world. The eight courses offered delve into critical urban planning themes and are designed to help you gain both conceptual knowledge and practical tools to put your city on the path toward sustainable, integrated development.


6-8 hours of content per course

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