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Annual review 2022

A 45ha park that will be the centrepiece of New Clark City, Philippines

Future-ready cities for south-east Asia


A programme to develop 13 key infrastructure projects across south-east Asia called for a forward-thinking approach to transport infrastructure, urban planning and climate resilience, with social outcomes at the fore.


Global Future Cities Programme, south-east Asia


UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office


Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam


Programme management, transport planning, climate resilience, urban planning, data management systems


Socially inclusive development

Huge economic growth is predicted for the six south east Asian countries of the Global Future Cities programme. If infrastructure investment is delivered holistically and focused on social outcomes, there is a great opportunity here to create sustainable, inclusive growth that benefits all sections of society. This allies with the core ethos of our Cities Practice: to integrate the breadth and depth of our professional services, tailoring them to create a place and people-based approach that meets all citizens’ needs.

As social inclusion was one of the programme’s main drivers, we used the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to guide and assess our interventions, maximising the benefits to local people and wider society. We also aligned all the programme’s activities with UK legal frameworks, including the International Development Act 2002. Measuring and advancing gender equality and social inclusion was central to our work: we considered it from the very beginning of each intervention and aimed to embed transformative change in local communities.  

Our Future Cities team on a site visit



Four interventions focused on improving connectivity by developing integrated transport systems, including mobility strategies and the data systems to support them.

7. Smart ticketing for public transportation – Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
We produced a framework of technical standards to enable smart ticketing, encouraging a shift from private vehicles to public transport. This will help alleviate traffic congestion and cut transport related carbon emissions. Reduced congestion improves prosperity by reducing travel times within the city, enabling people to access more job opportunities and increasing access to retail and leisure facilities. Meanwhile, lower emissions and active travel modes support the decarbonisation agenda while boosting healthier lifestyles.  

Smart tickets for travel in Ho Chi Minh City