The Ethiopian Cities Association (ECA) is an alliance of currently 86 Ethiopian cities working towards improving the living conditions of the urban Ethiopian population. The Ethiopian Cities Association was established in February 2009 to represent, advocate for and build the capacity of its member cities.
The formation of Ethiopian Cities Association (ECA) is the joint interest and effort of Ethiopian Cities to strengthen coordination of their efforts and mutually work towards mitigating the deep-rooted and diversified urban problems in their cities. Initially, the cities and their stakeholders jointly studied the international cities networks’ experiences, learned from their success and in principle agreed on the creation of Cities Network in Ethiopia.
Accordingly, a task force that consisted of experts from Addis Ababa City Administration [AACA], Ministry of Urban Development and Construction [MoUDC] and German International Development Organization [GIZ] was established to thoroughly conduct a study and come up with proposal on the need for establishment of Cities’ Network in the country. The taskforce methodically assessed and presented a proposal that suggested the need, organizational structure, aims and working procedure for Cities Network. Subsequently, the Ethiopian Cities Network was born in October 2009 during the first Ethiopian Cities Week event.
Just about a year and half after its inception, the Ethiopian Cites’ Network was replaced by the Ethiopian Cities Association that was registered and licensed to operate as a consortium of Ethiopian Resident Society in accordance with the Charities and Societies proclamation no. 621/2009 on March 25, 2011 and secured its certificate bearing number 2228. This certification basically allows Ethiopian Cities Association (ECA) to secure more than 10% of funding from foreign sources. The number of ECA’s member has also grown from 19 cities at the time of its establishment to the current level of 73 cities.
It is a voluntary membership and a not-for-profit organization owned by and accountable to its members; missioned to provide tailored capacity building and networking services. The Association serves as an urban development platform for learning, knowledge-exchange, and dialogue; undertakes advocacy and liaison; and promotes partnerships and collaboration towards transformation and growth.
To realize 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 organization plays a pivotal role in implementing agenda that transforms the country at large.