Sustainable Development Goals
Indian scientist, anthropologist, author and former Under-Secretary General of United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (UN Habitat), Arcot Ramachandran, known for his scholarship and commitment towards social development dies at the age of 95.
As the first Executive Director of what was then the UN Centre for Human Settlement, Ramachandran was a tireless advocate for ensuring a more sustainable urbanization for all. He led the creation of World Habitat Day, as a day to remind the world of the importance of sustainable progress, and which is still celebrated with pride every year. He also championed the proclamation of 1987 as the International Year of Shelter for the Homeless, as a part of the global strategy to place housing and shelter for all at the forefront of sustainable development. He strongly advocated the involvement of the people themselves in the planning and building of their habitat. And it was under his leadership that UN Habitat launched the Sustainable Cities Programme, which has benefitted millions in the past two decades.
Over his life, he made a wealth of contributions, both social and educational, through his academic and administrative careers. Beyond the many awards attesting to his unwavering commitment, he will be remembered for his passion, his dedication, and the profound impact he had on innovations in housing and sustainable urbanisation.
Watch his interview on the importance of using local materials and technology in the construction of affordable housing for the most vulnerable in urban and rural areas.