[Urban Policy]Future Policy Pathway for Future Asian and Pacific City

by leviss

Future Policy Pathway for Future Asian and Pacific City

Hor Keomayourado


Keyword: Asia-pacific cities, Policy Pathways, Planning for resilience, Urban regeneration, Integrated sustainability.

Figure 1: Map of Asia Pacific (Countries and territories generally included in the Asia-Pacific region in Dark Green. Countries and territories included in some definitions but not all are in Light Green.)


Planning for resilience requires citywide hazard mapping and mainstreaming this information into land administration. It also requires participatory and inclusive land readjustment data, creating transparency about who requires relocation and where upgrading can be done, irrespective of title. Dispute-free evacuation sites in case of emergencies need to be pre-identified. Relocation policies and strategies also need intensive community engagement and stakeholder consultations. (UN-Habitat, RMIT, and Global Land Tool Network, 2019, pp. 28-33.)

There are specific future policy pathways in cities and land ownership planning that apply to cities in the region. It involves regulatory frameworks, national planning and technology. These recommendations come as macro-level urban and territorial plans become more comprehensive, while countries are including the brawny environment and resilience dimensions to their vision. ​​ Regional planning also focuses on outcomes to provide additional micro-level economic benefits, requiring continued support for state-driven capital investment and for ongoing solutions.

Re-urbanization or urban regeneration improves the utilization of existing assets and provides long-term benefits to the communities. In short, local leaders and local planners are experimenting in many specific ways. All of these aspects combine to create a mature environment for bold action to enhance urban and regional planning in Asia and the Pacific region.

According to the report entitled “The Future of Asian & Pacific Cities”, published in 2019, recommends THREE overarching policy pathways:

  1. “Integrate sustainability and quality-of-life targets into urban planning to future-proof public and private investment in cities”

Planning for economic growth alone is not the main approach in the 21st century. In particular, countries should incorporate sustainability issues into urban regulatory frameworks and policies, such as environmental issues and resilience, which require further strengthening into territorial goals and measures for regional development, as well as other social development goals. Such as poverty reduction and vulnerability reduction. The city’s quality of life goals need to reflect a strong urban economic policy that covers issues such as employment and diversity, diverse utility areas, and safety for people, especially children.

National urban policy can support the development of sustainable goals, targets and monitoring capabilities. Efforts to develop common urban policies across neighboring countries should support economic integration policies. Sub regional urban policy is decisive, taking into account the key long-term drivers of prosperity and sustainability, including demographic change.

Finally, financial institutions should continue to update plan review based on current and future challenges of urban development. The regulatory framework should encourage participatory consultations and review of investment territory backed by financial institutions. ​ If planning is easier and more affordable, banks and investment authorities will make better use of it.

Pays for implementation projects are used in some countries to encourage the provision of high quality health services. Under these schemes, financial incentives are provided to health services or practitioners to improve quality. Seven countries reported some form of operating system pay. Among them, the Republic of Korea, New Zealand and Thailand present quality indicators to institutions and provide incentives based on the results. In Cambodia, the recognition of payment-related services.





















Table 1: Pay for performance schemes (Source: Evaluating quality strategies in Asia-Pacific countries: survey results, WHO and OECD 2015)


  1. Co-produce with citizens urban planning solutions that align technological investment with adequate local government capacities

Technology has been making planning more efficient and affordable. Territorial assessment technology should be implemented and developed, especially with regard to urban expansion and interdependence between urban and rural areas.

For example, the widespread use of social media across the region promotes the dissemination of widely popular results, which benefits the replication of initiatives, including micro-upgrades and recurrences. At present, Facebook is the most influential in the whole Asia-Pacific region, even in countries where the population does not speak much English. One big exception in the region is China, where Facebook is blocked. Because of this, less than 1% of the country’s total internet population actively uses the app. However, there is an Asian social network thriving at home. These are messaging-based services that have evolved from one-on-one messaging services to the well-known social networks.

Social media is also increasingly used to inform local authorities about disasters. Future technological shifts and artificial intelligence for planning should not see local planning capabilities again being replaced by more remote private planning. Local planning, especially local public activities, is necessary to be able to use new and smart tools​​ than remote teams can bring.

  1. Identify specific urban regeneration and growth strategies that optimize urban-rural and city-region collaborations that spur sustainability and investment

As planning creativity rises from the local level, it is important for governments and national institutions to set criteria for local government and make urban planning frameworks and innovation strategies a prerequisite for implementation. National Urban Policy needs to address the increasingly existing outdating planning concepts that impede fair and effective implementation by adhering to obsolete principles enshrined in law and practice established at different times less relevant to the urban contexts found in present and the future.

National government regulators and planning associations also have to start considering the impact of smarter planning. The delivery of remote planning services and other business and technology environment changes can bring cost and quality benefits for local governments and local stakeholders. While not always part of Governments, planning associations should be involved in stronger regional collaboration. They should not simply promote leading cities or countries, but rather focus on streamlining planning goals, targets and indicators and mainstreaming collective risk and development issues.

Shanghai is one of the most rapidly developing and exciting cities in Asia and over the past twenty years it has already firmly established itself as a major world financial center​ following by ten principles for specific urban regeneration such as (1) Establish a Long-Term Vision – The decision makers to take a long-term strategic view of the city and its ongoing regeneration. (2)  Design for People – Plans for the city with streets designed to a human scale. (3) Conserve Cultural Heritage – All unique cultural identity and character of Shanghai should not be lost. (4) Create Integrated Networks – The creation of integrated networks in terms of transportation, parks, commerce, and other functions. (5) Optimize Land Use – To be able to respond to changing needs, and is built for the long term. (6) Vitalize Public Space – Public space of all sizes in the city should be strongly encouraged. (7) Foster Collaboration – Focusing on a wide array of skilled people are needed. (8) Build Healthy and Sustainable Communities – Natural resources should be protected and preserved and construction should be minimally invasive. (9) Integrate Economic Development – Create an opportunity bring higher productivity, greater vibrancy and more jobs. (10) Promote Diversity – embrace functional, demographic and aesthetic diversity. (ULI ASIA PACIFIC)

Thus, the regional national planning framework sets out sustainable principles in the national vision. More and more national frameworks absorb ecological goals and climate change. The regional framework basically implements the concept of systems of cities that go beyond simple economic dependencies. They are increasingly emphasizing cooperation between urban and rural and urban areas, which is important for sustainability, growth and investment.


Urban and territorial planning is the foundation block for creating a better town. Cities that have been guided by past plans may point to better results in the present. They provide adequate housing, efficient transportation and more work in line with the expectations of a growing or declining population.

However, even if the city otherwise does not benefit from planning, it is never too late to get started. Planners must be flexible and address the current situation, as in the case of new towns, planners start from scratch. Whatever the current city situation, its future will be better guaranteed if guided by the plan. Ultimately, planning is the link between laying the groundwork for future uncertainties and global stresses, from climate change to natural disasters and automation.

In short, a city should never happen again. Every building block and neighborhood requires careful planning. Cities can play an important role in supporting a sustainable and integrated future in our region. However, it depends on decision-making activities in cities and urban centers across Asia and the Pacific.



  1. United Nation Publication (2019): The Future of Asian and Pacific Cities: Transformative pathways towards sustainable urban development
  2. WHO Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data (2015): Evaluating Quality Strategies in Asia-Pacific Countries: Survey Results
  3. MSL Group (October, 2016): Social Media Marketing in Asia Pacific: Available source: https://www.rvc.ru/upload/iblock/887/Social_Media_Marketing_in_Asia_Pacific.pdf
  4. Nicole Chan (May 15, 2017): Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide: Asia Pacific. Source: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/social-media-strategy-best-practice-guide-asia-pacific-nicole-chan/
  5. Peter Walker and James Hacking (September 16, 2014): Ten Principles for Urban Regeneration: Making Shanghai a Better City – New ULI Report makes recommendations of the future planning and development of Shanghai. Source: https://asia.uli.org/ten-principles-urban-regeneration-making-shanghai-better-city-new-uli-report-makes-recommendations-future-planning-development-shanghai/

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