Porto Novo, Ville Verte

A participatory urban and environmental process in Porto Novo, Benin

Porto-Novo, the capital of Benin, is a city with an exceptional built and non-built heritage and is home to natural areas of great quality, located in a strategic position between Cotonou and Lagos. The revalorization of Porto-Novo requires sustainable urban development projects, redevelopment of historical squares and potential tourist sites such as the Porto-Novo lagoon. The city must regain its attractiveness by defining itself as a modern city capable of meeting the expectations of its inhabitants in terms of well-being and quality of life. It must give impetus to an economic dynamic and succeed in welcoming, once again, administrative bodies that had preferred Cotonou in the past.


–      Porto-Novo Municipality


–      2019-2022

In order to preserve and enhance the natural environment (wetland of the lagoon bank) and the rich heritage of the old town, the PNVV project plans to build a promenade that will protect the bank from urbanisation. It will also encourage the discovery and re-appropriation of the natural environment of the lagoon by all Porto-Novians, especially the youngest, by means of an educational, artistic and tourist circuit.One of the objectives of the project is to favour a participative approach of integrated social consultation, favouring the tools of project co-construction. The objective is to seize the opportunities that the involvement of civil society, citizens and private actors represents. It is to ensure this support that the Porto-Novo Town Hall, within the framework of the Porto-Novo Green City project, has recommended the recruitment of a Social and Environmental Project Manager (MOSE).

The MOSE has a strategic and operational vocation and, among its missions and objectives, focuses in particular on (1) Raising awareness of the Porto Novo populations on the fundamental environmental and climatic stakes of the project (preservation and enhancement of wetlands and biodiversity, floods and climatic hazards, waste management,…).(2) Initiating a participative dynamic of co-construction of the pilot projects for the development of the riverbanks by closely associating the inhabitants and the economic actors of the territory, women and men – farmers, fish farmers, fishermen, – in the design and implementation of the promenade and its pilot projects.

Post-disater Urban Planning

Post-disaster urban planning guide to small municiaplities, Mexico

Post-Cyclone Urban Planning and Governance

Technical support for the development of a methodological guide to small Mexican municipalities for strategic post-earthquake urban planning. Based on  the identification of relevant case studies in Latin America and similar contexts, the guidance document developed includes methodological steps for efficient municipal planning in post-disaster contexts and effective tools for diagnostic and identification of priority areas.

Subcontract for Silvère Jarrot, Humanitarian consultant

Related works

Urban Resilience in Africa

Final Evaluation of a Urban Resilience program in Lusophone Africa

Urban Resilience in Africa

Evaluation of the Urban Risk Reduction and Resilience Building in Lusophone Africa Project:
Assessment of the achievement of expected accomplishments and performance of the project in increasing technical understanding and knowledge of municipal authorities, and enhanced communication and information exchange between cities and towns in project cities.

Related works


Co-creation and design of the show "Mutirão" with Lagoa Colectivo at Culturgest

Mutirão is a show about houses, refugees, disasters and exile.

Mutirão is a collaborative artistic gathering designed to create a show for people of all ages, an open event taking place in a garden, as we build and dismantle a house-stage, recycling the waste products of the host institution. It is a hands-on artistic action-reflection, based on an interdisciplinary relationship between dance and architecture. The dancers also build the house and the audience are challenged to join in the work of this first collaborative creation of the Lagoa collective, inventing an aesthetics through their affective involvement in this communal building process.

In collaboration with Lagoa Coletivo. The show has been performed from 3 June to 1 July 2017 in Fundação CGD – Culturgest.


–      Lagoa Coletivo


–      Culturgest


–      2017

On the way to school

About a children's subjective map, storks and a roundabout

During our six-week residence in the village of Graignes-Mesnil Angot, we conducted ten workshops with the municipal school students, from kindergarten to 5th Grade, on the theme of “the way to school”.

This led to the creation of the ‘children’s map’, a montage of the students’ drawings, where the town appears as the meeting point of four roads around a roundabout, populated by domestic or wild animals and containing pink houses and hollow trees.


–      Graiges-Mesnil Angot Muncipality


–      2011

We also jointly built a giant model that represented the village, integrating the children’s houses and projects: a motocross racing circuit, a race-circuit-zoo, a stork sculpture and daycare for guinea pigs, an animal fountain, rainbow and garlands, a water park with vertiginous slides, play gardens and, watching over this colorful set, the articulated presence of a giant Father Christmas…

This work was presented to the whole village during a festive evening event, as well as to the city council and mayor. The aim of this activity was to promote a sense of citizenship among the youngest members of the community and to raise politicians’ awareness of children’s specific urban development needs. Indeed, many newcomers to this rural town are young couples with small children, who find few adapted facilities as the town has been more used to catering for a predominantly aged population.

Christ-Roi participatory planning

A participatory process in a Port-au-Prince neighborhood

This assignment consisted of an urban diagnosis and participatory planning in the neighborhood of Christ-Roi, Port-au-Prince, Haiti, for the NGO Solidarités International. For 4 months, a team of planners, architects, sociologists, anthropologists and social mobilizers assisted 100 people to develop an urban neighborhood improvement strategy. The results were presented to the mayor and formed the basis of an urban renewal project.


–      Solidarités International


–      2012

The process was divided into four phases: a festive launch, with traditional brass bands that involved people walking through the neighborhood thus enabling them to cross certain “invisible barriers”; a diagnostic phase that included generating thematic maps (water and sanitation, services, leisure and culture, waste, environment, road conditions, etc.); a rehabilitation strategies definition phase; and, lastly, a phase in which the final document was presented to city officials.

The participatory mapping exercises were all progressive. The phase began with training sessions on map reading and awareness-raising on the importance of such tools, at the same time as promoting local knowledge and grassroots map production. After several weeks, the inhabitants had gained confidence in their knowledge and learned about spatial representation. At the end of the process, they were able to hold complex discussions with the team on integrated urban strategies, aware of their neighborhood’s challenges and opportunities.