In Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Senegal or Tunisia, the making of the city is being invented and reinvented with and for the inhabitants, in the service of inclusive and united urban development. This dynamic, launched by the French Development Agency via the Urban Pépinières program, is now entering a phase of exchange, sharing and development of synergies with the first cross-exchange mission of the Urban Pépinières Network.

The Urban Nurseries program , funded by the French Development Agency (AFD), has been experimenting since 2018 with new forms of public space design, as close as possible to future users. Four systems are currently at work, in Ouagadougou , Dakar , Abidjan and in several towns in Tunisia, where rampant urbanization requires local interventions designed collectively by backing up to structural urban development programs. larger scale.


An exchange network under construction

The urban nurseries, accompanied by an animation program led by a consortium of actors (made up of Gret, UrbaMonde , UrbaSEN and Cabanon Vertical ), participate in the construction of an international network of actors Are engaged in efforts to co-produce cities, thus forming part of a proliferation of frugal and participatory urban planning initiatives.

Among the resources available to the network, the animation program launched in 2021 a cycle of exchanges between nurseries, in order to meet and learn from each other. In this context, the very first nursery exchange mission was organized from February 21 to 27, 2021 in Ouagadougou!

The Ouagadougou Nursery team, led by GRET, received with its partner the municipal major works agency, a Dakar delegation made up of four members of the nursery, representing the structures of GRET, UrbaSEN, Collectif Etc , d’UrbaMonde and a representative of Dakar Urban Transport Executive Council (Cetud).

Mission at work – cross presentations of nursery projects, February 23. © Studio Bainem / Florent Chiappero


A first inspiring mission …

If the main objective of this mission was first of all to meet, to get to know each other and to consolidate links between the members of the Pépinière collective in the making, the “menu of exchanges” for the week was well filled!

The program of the mission was designed collectively, as one of the participants recalled, adding that this notably made it possible to organize “relevant exchange workshops (…) which enabled each of the incubators to work on subjects and themes which make sense with regard to their state of progress of the project ”. These themed workshops were also an opportunity to share experiences, tools and working methods for the implementation of certain key stages of an incubator, in particular calls for citizen initiatives, diagnostics of uses, or even the co-design and co-management of public spaces.

Working session around co-management, on the Camp CRS site, in the presence of the members of the site management committee, on February 22. © Studio Bainem / Florent Chiappero


In addition to these working sessions, site visits to the Ouagadougou Nursery and emblematic places in the city, as well as discussions with local partners were organized. Rich and fascinating debates took place, day and night. They made it possible to strengthen the mutual knowledge of the teams and of the incubator projects in progress, their activities, challenges and specificities. Finally, this mission allowed each team to feed its strategic thinking and enrich its program of activities. According to one of the participants, this mission represents a “great initiative which made it possible to discuss reciprocal professional practices and to draw lessons for their improvement”.

This mission also gave rise to the production of the very first episode of “Radio Pépit ‘, the radio of the capital”, dedicated to urban incubators and the proliferation of urban initiatives. This first program, “Dakar meets Ouagadougou”, was co-constructed with the two teams and recorded in Ouagadougou during the mission. It was then produced with the dual objective of collective feedback on this mission to the Nurseries network and the capitalization of experiences.

Listen to the podcast here

Find the story of the mission as well as all its resources

Recording session in progress for Radio Pépit ‘, February 26


… And a growing nursery entertainment program!

On the strength of this first mission, the animation program plans to continue its program of cross-exchanges between urban nurseries with the organization from April 12 to 17 of a mission from the Nursery of Ouagadougou which will go to meet the ‘Abidjan team.


In addition, the program has just launched its open source digital platform for documentation and dissemination around incubators and similar approaches to participatory, frugal, tactical, transitory town planning…. To find out more, visit the site


Learn more about:

The urban nurseries of Dakar and Ouagadougou

The urban nurseries animation program


Find all the news on the Urban Nurseries website