About the ECA

The Ethiopian Cities Association (ECA) is an alliance of currently 31 Ethiopian cities  working towards improving the living conditions of the urban Ethiopian population. The ECA is a voluntary membership organisation owned by and accountable to its members.

The Association was founded in 2009, on the eve of the first Ethiopian Cities Day (now Ethiopian Cities Week), as a response to the challenges faced by Ethiopia’s rapidly growing urban centres. The aim of the ECA is to support city administrations in their quest to deliver better services to their citizens. To realise this mandate, the ECA seeks to facilitate the exchange of information and experiences among cities and between cities and stakeholders, it fosters the dissemination of national and international best practices and encourages policy dialogue on pertinent urban development and city management issues.

By capacitating city administrations, the organisation plays a pivotal role in speeding up the implementation of ongoing urban development reforms and increases their chances of success through city-to-city cooperation.


The ECA aspires for all Ethiopian cities to be prosperous, sustainable, productive and competitive by 2023/2024.


  • To provide tailored capacity building and networking services;
  • To serve as a platform for learning, dialogue and knowledge exchange  on urban development matters;
  • To undertake targeted and members led advocacy  and liaison for transformation and growth and
  • To promote partnerships and collaboration;

ECA Objectives & Activities

The association has the objective of enhancing the institutional as well as human capacity of its member cities through the creation of platforms for knowledge exchange and peer learning. Along with this objective, the ECA has so far implemented various interventions, which are geared towards developing cities capacities, which in turn, bring-in improvement in the quality of life of their inhabitants. These include:

  • Collecting and sharing of national and international best practices
  • Seminars and Workshops
  • Study Tours
  • Thematic working Groups
  • City-to-city cooperation
  • Trainings

Focus areas

  • Urban planning, land development &management;
  • Local economic development;
  • Urban governance and Management;
  • Housing;
  • Urban environment & sanitation
  • and Urban finance;  


  • The ECA co-hosts the The Ethiopian Cities Week
  • Sister partnerships have been established
  • Exposure visits were undertaken to  Germany, South Africa and Tanzania read more
  • Several experience exchange and learning workshops have been conducted in different thematic areas of urban development such as best practice workshops focusing on the new Land Lease Policy , Solid and Liquid Waste Management; Labour Intensive Infrastructure Management (Cobble stone development), Urban Greenery Development and Management, Employment Creation, Lake-Side Cities Development , and Urban Revenue Enhancement. 
  • The ECA is a member of the Urban Management Network together with the Ministry of Urban Development & Construction (MUDC), the Ethiopian Civil Service University (ECSU) and the Addis Ababa University (AAU).
  • Transformational and Strategic Leadership Trainings for Mayors, Deputy Mayors, City Managers, Senior Experts and Officials are conducted regularly.