Bridging the gap for mainstreaming underprivileged children

According to the UNESCO EFA report, 1.4 million children between the ages of six to 11 are out of school in India, which is the fourth largest number in the world. As of November 2013, Bangalore had 26,000 out of school urban poor children living in dire conditions, not getting an education. Many of these underprivileged children are children of migrant parents who are involved in unorganized work, such as construction labor or rag pickers. This forces many children to take on household responsibilities like sibling care at a very early or labor work, which fundamentally impacts their education. Considering that migration to Bangalore is from parts of India where the mother tongue is different than Kannada, this internal migration impacts children the most.Read more.

Urban poverty in Zimbabwe: Unmasking severe deprivations in cities

Poverty is one of the most serious challenges facing the world today, with more than 30 percent of the world's population estimated to be living in multidimensional poverty (UNDP, 2013). In developing countries poverty has been highly associated with rural areas and hence young economically active people have moved to urban areas in the hope of getting better lives for themselves and their families. This view, especially in Zimbabwe, has changed over the last two decades as poverty has become widespread in both urban and rural areas of Zimbabwe, with poverty in urban areas increasing at a faster rate than in rural areas. Results from the Poverty Income Consumption Expenditure Survey (PICES) of 2011/12 carried out by the National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT) indicate that 38 per cent per cent of urban households, and almost 47 per cent of people living in urban areas in Zimbabwe were classified as poor. Unlike rural households, urban households almost always require cash to access social services such as health and education and hence greater need for households to have secure and consistent income to meet these costs. The urban dwellers usually face costly accommodation rentals, out-of-pocket payments for health, education, water and power supplies. Urban areas are highly associated with high levels of social fragmentation resulting in declining social cohesion and increased social exclusion especially for the poor women and children. Read more.

Putting children at the heart of the urban data revolution

The urban data revolution is here. From Abidjan to Mumbai to New York, we are beginning to learn about real-time trends: in traffic, land use, even in illegal cooking oil dumping in cities. City data is almost in surplus, and mayors are bombarded with new information on goods and resources every day. Yet little of this data shows us how a city's most important resource — its people — are living. Read more.