About IDYF 2019

What IDYF 2019 Aspires to Achieve


“How can we achieve sustainable urban development?” 


The Discussion Theme for IDYF 2019 and Case Studies 


“What are the bottlenecks for sustainable development in slums?

- Identify key players and offer solutions-”


Today, more than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas. As the trend of inflow from rural areas is still ongoing in most developing countries, it is expected that the urban population worldwide will reach 6.5 billion people by 2050, which will account for two-thirds of the total world population then. Accordingly, mega-cities are born one after another. Most mega-cities in developing countries have huge slums around their city edges. UN habitat estimates that more than 800 million people live in slum areas globally and this figure continues to increase. Thus, there is an urgent need to deal with social problems in slums that occur due to sudden urban development such as the shortage of durable housing, the lack of access to social infrastructure, and so on. In fact, the United Nations is trying to address these issues by setting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to achieve sustainable urban development, one of which is Goal 11: “Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”. In response to this target, IDYF 2019 will provide opportunities for like-minded youths all over the world to seek solutions for the following issues to achieve better living standards: (1) Improving security in Rocinha, Brazil, (2) Bringing education to children in Dharavi, India, and (3) Developing water infrastructure in Kibera, Kenya.


Case studies 


In the forum, participants will be divided into 6-7 teams and each team will analyze one of the case studies and offer solutions.Case studies are as follows:


• Improving security in Rocinha, Brazil

• Bringing education to children in Dharavi, India

• Developing water infrastructure in Kibera, Kenya


More about the Case Studies 


1. Improving security in Rocinha, Brazil


‘Favelas’ in metropolitan cities of Brazil were drastically expanded as urbanization in the 1950s provoked mass migration from the countryside to the cities throughout Brazil. Unable to work or to afford housing, many more people moved into favelas in the 1970s. While the Brazilian government made several attempts for eradication and removal of favelas, they are still primary residences despite serious problems such as weak infrastructure and awful sanitation. Notably, favelas have been notorious as criminal hotbeds with the frequent occurrence of flagitious crimes, and the spread of weapons and drugs. Some of the favelas in Rio de Janeiro are ruled by drug traffickers or by organized crime groups, where drug dealing, sporadic gun fights, and residual control from drug lords often happen. Lower education opportunities and high unemployment rates could prompt residents to get involved in those groups, and such stigma for living in favelas leads to discrimination against residents, which makes it difficult to get out from poverty. In addition, while foreign investment and the number of companies expanding their businesses in Brazil are increasing, public safety in Brazil is considered as an obstacle for economic growth and it should be improved. In this forum, participants will be required to analyse bottlenecks and prerequisites and discuss how public safety can be improved in Rio de Janeiro's largest favela ‘Rocinha,’ which still has unstable security problems.


2. Bringing education to children in Dharavi, India


Dharavi is a locality in Mumbai, India. It houses one of the largest slums in the world, as depicted in the Hollywood movie ‘Slumdog Millionaire’. Dharavi slum was originally formed in the late 19th century during the British colonial era and has kept expanding since then. Dharavi has attracted urban poor and middle class from all over India due to the cheap cost of living especially from the 1940s, which resulted in a situation where about 60% of the Mumbai population lives in this slum today. Due to the overpopulation and weak governance of the public services, Dharavi is still far from achieving the targeted goal of universalization in elementary education. Students from disadvantaged families cannot attend classes regularly due to economical reasons. Also, even if they get enrolled in formal schools, it is very difficult to keep them in school until they complete the primary education. This not only prevents children in slum from getting out of the place, but also encourages them to work illegally as unskilled workers. In this forum, participants are expected to analyse bottlenecks and prerequisites of this problem and discuss how we can bring universal educational services to all children in Dharavi.


3. Developing water infrastructure in Kibera, Kenya


Kibera, the largest slum in Nairobi, Kenya was established in the early 20th century and has been growing ever since. Most of Kibera’s residents come from rural areas with chronic underdevelopment and overpopulation issues. Although the Kenyan government owns all the land of Kibera, no basic services such as schools, clinics, and water infrastructure are publicly provided, and the services that do exist are privately owned. Kibera has struggled with public health issues caused by insufficient sanitation and sewage services. As the basic public health services are scarce, 700,000 residents in the slum are suffering from many infectious diseases such as cholera, malaria and diarrhea. The water crisis described above can be seen in many parts of the world, however, the situation in Kibera is particularly severe for many reasons. Due to a combination of political exclusion, the operation of water mafias, water rationing, and poor infrastructure, residents of Kibera pay more for water than wealthier Kenyans do. In Kibera, households spend about 20% of their income on water, which sometimes equals to the cost of their rent. Moreover, when there is a shortage, the price of water skyrockets and the women and children of Kibera have to spend all day looking for water. If they cannot get clean water at a reasonable price, they need to consume substandard water from a free yard tap or natural spring, most of which are contaminated and unsafe for drinking. In this forum, participants are expected to analyze the bottlenecks that hinder sufficient access to safe water and propose some solutions to develop water infrastructure in Kibera, Kenya.


What makes IDYF special?


Incredible Diversity


People from different walks of life participate in IDYF every year. We have had people of diverse occupations taking part in our program such as university students, doctors, United Nation workers, technicians, journalists and even high school students! For example in IDYF2015, there were 4500 applicants  from approximately 162 developed or developing countries around the globe, and 44 successful youth from 34 countries participated. In the following year, we had 7 participants from Pekalongan region, Indonesia, where the case study of the year (2016) took place, and 35 other participants from about 27 countries who were chosen participated. IDYF appreciates its participants's great diversity. IDYF believes that Youngsters who play various roles in different fields are able to work together and discuss the issues in international development. 


An International Forum of Youth, by Youth, for Youth


Another unique part of IDYF is that it is an international forum of youth, by youth, for youth. This is the best environment for the young participants to think of new and original ideas. Also, not only the results of the forum, but also the process itself contains values and experiences that participants can take home.


Discussion based on Rich Information from the Field


Even though IDYF is an international forum for the next generation, we do not believe that it should end there at the end of one week’s forum by thinking about the ideal future of our society. When we face the reality, it is when we see the future. Therefore, at IDYF2019, we will spend greater time for interviews and feedback from professionals of the development field and encourage discussions with more details, statistics and information.


Support from Experts


Every year at IDYF, we have professionals from the international development field to give us lectures, and feedback. They also are the judges for the final presentation. Thanks to these kind supports, participants will be able to learn the forefronts and think deeply about international developments.