Applications are now open for UK SMEs to form partnerships with South African and Kenyan organisations to develop solutions to urban challenges in Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu in Kenya, and Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban in South Africa.

With support from Connected Places Catapult, these partnerships will work together to address the issues identified by key stakeholders in the chosen cities.

The selected challenge areas for Kenya are solid waste management, stormwater drainage and flooding, wastewater management and active mobility (these can be tackled across any of the three cities).

In South Africa, the challenges are sustainable mobility for Johannesburg, solid waste management and pollution in Durban, and building resilience in informal settlements in Cape Town.

Partnerships are eligible to receive funding of up to £25,000 for early-stage concepts or £40,000 for more mature technologies to develop innovative solutions to these challenges.

UK and South African / Kenyan partnerships will be encouraged to collaborate, share expertise and develop sustainable long-term partnerships to improve life for citizens.

The Urban Links Africa (ULA) project is UK government-funded and run by Connected Places Catapult, the UK centre for excellence for urban innovation and mobility.

Connected Places Catapult will offer support and expertise to help partnerships hone their solutions to tackle these challenges.

‘We are very excited about this project,’ said Connected Places Catapult’s Global Commercial Team Lead, Nadia Echchihab. ‘We believe it will provide some innovative solutions to these urban challenges.’

Connected Places Catapult will be inviting applications from partnerships until 21st August 2020.

Successful applicants will be selected in September 2020.

For support in finding organisations to partner with on the challenges, visit our LinkedIn group, our matchmaking platform, or join a webinar

For more information about the project, visit