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The purpose of the World's City Profiles is to provide a concise overview of the main issues facing the world's cities. The World's City Profiles offer a unique opportunity to draw attention to some of the major problems facing cities, the solutions adopted and some of the best practices. The city profiles are complementary to the Global Urban Indicators Database, published in the GUO CD-ROM 2001.

City profiles have been written by urban data and policy specialists in cities. The content of city profiles does not necessarily reflect the views and expert opinions of UNCHS (Habitat).

Each city profile addresses the following issues:


Highlights the key characteristics of the city: location, geography, historical development, regional significance.


Provides an overview of the shelter situation with emphasis on security of tenure, right to adequate housing, access to land, access to credit, and access to basic services.


Provides an overview of social development and eradication of poverty, with emphasis on health and safety, social integration, support to disadvantaged groups, gender equality.


Provides an overview of environmental management issues, with emphasis on population, geographical balance, water supply and demand, urban pollution (air, wastes, water), disaster management, transports, local environmental planning.


Provides an overview of the economic situation with emphasis on small and micro-enterprises, informal sector, productivity, employment, public - private sector partnerships.


Provides an overview of the level of governance with emphasis on decentralization / strengthening of local authorities, participation and civic engagement, transparency, accountability and efficiency.

Provides an overview of the level of international co-operation at the city level.