20/9/2019 - Global Forum on Modern Direct Democracy
20/9/2019 - Here’s how we can design inclusive cities
19/9/2019 - Leveraging the activism of civil society
18/9/2019 - City-zen, new urban energy - final event
18/9/2019 - Local governments at the UN High Level Week
18/9/2019 - Electric mobility and infrastructure
17/9/2019 - Join the European Days of Local Solidarity
16/9/2019 - The Future of Greenfield Cities
13/9/2019 - Register now for the Polis Conference!
13/9/2019 - The Urban Mobility Summit Program is Live!
13/9/2019 - Finance for Urban Climate Action Remains Low.
11/9/2019 - Update on the Seventh Asia-Pacific Urban Forum
11/9/2019 - Will cities of the future be car-free?
10/9/2019 - Call for papers #WorldWaterCongress & Exhibition 2020
9/9/2019 - Building a Resilient World at ISE & IDR 2019
6/9/2019 - Registration opens for the World Urban Forum
6/9/2019 - Catalyzing Sustainable Urban Futures Event
6/9/2019 - Co-creating Responsive Urban Spaces
5/9/2019 - Venice City Solutions 2019
5/9/2019 - Cities Forum 2020
5/9/2019 - Tokyo named world's safest city
5/9/2019 - Why Flooded Cities Are Becoming Common
3/9/2019 - reSITE 2019 REGENERATE Program Complete
3/9/2019 - Understanding How Cities Grow
2/9/2019 - REAL CORP 2020 Save the Date
2/9/2019 - Tampere plants the seeds of a smarter future
2/9/2019 - Miami strengthens its inner urban core
There is a new leader on the direct democracy horizon: Taiwan.
As democracy stagnates in many countries, and direct democracy suffers from lack of support, the island nation in East Asia has taken historic steps to move forward. Taiwan’s new Referendum law, less than two years old, is considered a global model for initiative and referendum. Already by the end of this year a first series of citizen´s initiatives and popular referendums will be at the ballot boxes across the island.
But how is it working in practice? What are the lessons of the first years of modern direct democracy in the new powerhouse of citizens participation? What is happening across East and South Asia and the West Pacific? The Global Forum on Modern Direct Democracy is heading to the ´beautiful island´- or ´Formosa´ as called by the Portuguese - to find out. You are invite d to Taichung, Taiwan’s second most populous city, for the 2019 Global Forum, October 2-5, 2019.
The second URBACT City Lab took place in Brussels (BE) on 2nd and 3rd July 2019: “How are cities putting sustainable urban development into practice?” was the core question that drove us through general and specific considerations in the fields of Air Quality and Mobility, Energy Transition and Climate Adaptation and Sustainable Food Systems. When seeking to feed into the work of the updated Leipzig Charter, it appeared that on the one hand sustainability is still a complex paradigm to get into and embed for a city, but on the other hand, cities are leading the way in what can be done.
Smart City developments are rapidly advancing the way we live, work, and commute in our daily life. Smart City infrastructure is currently seeing a high-level of innovation toward a more sustainable future in the Netherlands. Using post-consumer plastic waste PlasticRoad builds sustainable roads of plastic reducing plastic pollution along the way.
Over half the world currently resides in major urban areas. By 2050 the United Nations estimates that number will grow to 70%. With proximity and access to networks, cities have been engines of innovation for centuries, providing a clear path from poverty to prosperity for many.
Cities have offered greater freedom and opportunity for social mobility for immigrants, minorities, and women than more traditional rural locations. As metropolises have grown – there are 33 megacities with 10 million inhabitants, and 8 cities with at least 20 million – cities are increasingly at the centre of the debate for a range of urgent global issues, from refugee migration to global warming.
Marmara Urban Forum (MARUF), is a biennial international urban forum to be organized by Marmara Municipalities Union for the first time on 1-3 October 2019 for three days at Istanbul Congress Center in Istanbul, Turkey.
MARUF will gather professionals from cities, national, regional and local governments, private sector, NGOs, universities and other stakeholders that play a crucial role in the design, transformation and governance of cities with the aim of sharing knowledge, experience and of creating new opportunities. Plenary sessions, parallel sessions, workshops, exhibitions, study tours and cultural events will be organized in the venue of the event. Guided by the Sustainable Development Goals, different approaches on urban services and urban management will be discussed in the forum. MARUF aims to find alternative ways for discussing urban issues to contribute to the implementation of the New Urban Agenda.
Cities and their managers are key stakeholders to ensure successful energy transition that would lead us towards carbon neutrality by 2050. The local technical, financial and managerial innovation takes place precisely in urban settings, which are also pioneers of integrating circularity in the concept of energy transition. There are many paths that can be taken by city leaders to reach their energy, climate and circularity goals, but one solution in particular stands out: district heating networks can become modern vectors of territorial energy integration and sector coupling. This workshop, organised in the framework of the European Week of Regions and Cities, will be focused on the role of high efficient district heating networks (DHN) as it will facilitate the exchange of emerging expertise and knowledge on their deployment and modernisation, taking the example of existing and prospective initiatives.
Demeaning comments, harassment and—less commonly—threats of violence all come with the job of being a mayor.
A new national survey assesses how frequently mayors experience various forms of abuse. The survey, the basis of a study published in the journal State and Local Government Review, finds that most mayors contend with verbal hostility or physical intimidation at rates above those of the general workforce.
The latest Energy Allies report showcases how civil society can be an ally and friend to city governments in a quest for better energy transition strategies with lasting local impact. Civil society includes citizen groups, non-governmental organizations, startups and established companies. It is a challenging, yet an important stakeholder to include in energy governance.
A city operating entirely on clean energy? In theory, it's possible. But in real life? How to integrate new solutions in existing buildings, systems and people's lives? What are the technical, economic or social barriers? And how to overcome these? That is what the EU-funded City-zen project is learning-by-doing in 20 innovative projects in Grenoble and Amsterdam. City-zen develops and demonstrates energy efficient cities all the while building a methodology and tools for cities, industries and citizens.
From 23 to 27 September, the United Nations General Assembly's High-Level Week will be held in New York, marking the quadrennial review of the Sustainable Development Goals. The second Local and Regional Governments Forum, which will take place on 24 September, will be the key moment of the week for local and regional leaders.
Electric mobility is clearly on the rise. In the second week of September, 2019, vehicle manufacturers presented their latest electric vehicle models at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA). Prices for the vehicles start below €30,000. However, new affordable vehicles are only one side of the coin. The other side is ensuring a complete and interoperable network of recharging infrastructure. The development of this infrastructure and its services will need to go hand in hand with the expected uptake of vehicles: you need to be able to recharge your vehicle everywhere, easily.
Heating and cooling (H&C) is a major topic for the decarbonisation of the European energy system, and it goes hand to hand with urban planning. No surprise that the Energy Transition Partnership of the Urban Agenda for the EU is focusing on both planning and H&C in its action plan released last April. Together with some of our members, such as the city of Udine, we have been actively involved in this partnership making sure local needs and interests stay high on the agenda.
The 3rd edition of the European Days of Local Solidarity (EDLS) is taking place from 15 to 30 November 2019. During two weeks, European cities and regions will promote their international cooperation actions.
The next edition of Velo-city cycling conference series, co-organised by the City of Ljubljana and the European Cyclists’ Federation, will take place in Ljubljana, Slovenia on 2-5 June 2020. The Call for Abstracts is now open to experts from around the world to share their work, knowledge, experience and insights with a global audience, to reflect the conference theme 'Smart Cycling Inclusion'.
The conference programme will tackle different topics on public space, social innovation and technology through the prism of policy and regulations.
The bloom is off the rose for self-driving tech among urban transportation officials, who are planning for a future with fewer private cars.
On the one hand, autonomous vehicles offer an excellent opportunity to rethink how American cities operate, down to each lane line, crosswalk, and curb. Two years ago, the National Association of City Transportation Officials, representing 81 North American cities, published its first planning guide to self-driving vehicles, highlighting the possibilities. If everyone moves around on electric-powered transit and robotaxis, no one needs to own a car. No one needs to park a car.
It began, like electricity before it, as a new technology for the rich in lower Manhattan to play with. A daring startup, Helios Travel, began offering teleportation from Greenwich (Connecticut) to Wall Street for the princely sum of $10,000 a pop. Many potential customers couldn’t handle the idea of all of the information in their atoms being encoded in a beam of light and flung into Manhattan, or accept the risk that their beam could be broken and their essence dissolved into nothingness (which happened twice in the first decade of Helios Travel). But for those brave enough to try it, they could make the 60 km trip essentially instantaneously, rather than wasting an hour in a car. For the very rich of Wall Street, it felt like just another option, like the $3,000 helicopter rides to the Hamptons that had been available for years. To the rest of the world, it became a joke, a symbol of the excesses of the roaring 2020s.
Organized by Airport Regions Conference, the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona, Atlanta Regional Commission, L'Institut Paris Region and Metropolis, this event is based on the publication which resulted from the MetroAirports pilot project.
As part of the European Week of Regions and Cities, on 10th October, the +CityxChange Lighthouse Cities, including our members, Limerick and Trondheim, will hold seminar on the future of urban energy systems.
A greener Europe depends on energy-positive urban areas. With funding from Horizon 2020, the cities of Trondheim (NO) and Limerick (IE) are transforming how they work with local communities to adapt to the reality of a new energy market and adopt a positive energy behaviour.
The two cities will develop innovative solutions that can be replicated across European cities in order to accelerate reaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Together with the European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities and Communities, we would like to invite stakeholders to discuss the practical issues of the developing Positive Energy Districts across Europe.
As the conventional wisdom goes, connecting more things to the Internet expands the cyber attack surface. For cities that have intentionally or even unknowingly become “smart” by networking critical infrastructure and digitizing services across a city’s domains, smart technologies pose a real risk of disrupting the critical functions that cities depend on every day.
As cities adopt new digital platforms and employ new technologies, ranging from the Internet of Things (IoT) to Artificial Intelligence (AI), into their infrastructure, the risk of a serious cyber incident, across a range of touch points, continues to grow. A cyber incident can result in significant financial harm and compromise the city’s most essential functions, such as the maintenance of its electrical grid or ability to dispatch emergency response services.
We are at the beginning of the next wave of urbanization — a period of rapid growth in both area and population, directly influencing and being influenced by the dominant and emerging technologies of our time.Two aspects defining this wave are massive transitions in how we power and move within cities. New technological developments have brought a decarbonized energy system and corresponding mobility revolution within reach.
Innovation in transport for sustainable cities and regions
The Egg, Brussels, 27-28 November 2019
Don't miss your chance to attend this year's Polis Conference and join the conversation on transport innovation in cities and regions across Europe and beyond. Early bird rates apply until 11 October.
The Summit's Call for Speakers saw over 300 candidates apply, allowing Autonomy to build a multi-faceted programme featuring an incredibly diverse line-up of speakers. No matter your level of mobility expertise, you can expect to discover new ideas and learn. See the program here.
Utterly astounding…insanely beautiful…undeniably stunning…
You would certainly miss half of the beauty that is Singapore if you’ve been to it but failed to drop by at the “Gardens by the Bay” and without getting the chance to take a glimpse of the supertrees.
The “Gardens” as they call it is undeniably one of the best urban designs that one can look at without getting tired of admiring its fascinating features.
Some say that the supertree structures and its surrounding architectures give you an “ultramodern,” “futuristic” and “otherworldly” atmosphere.
How Can Cities Bridge the Gap?
Due to historic levels of urbanization, cities have become focal points for creating a more sustainable world. Cities currently account for 80% of global GDP, 70% of emissions, and two-thirds of total energy consumption. The urgent need for climate action is clear, as articulated in the Sustainable Development Goals, Paris Agreement and New Urban Agenda. However, investment levels have not increased to keep pace with demand.
The Climate Policy Initiative reported that $455 billion was generated for climate action in 2016. But it’s unclear how much has been channeled to cities, and investment levels pale in comparison to the need. Projections vary depending on a range of factors, but it’s estimated an additional $5.5 trillion per year will be needed until 2035 to meet the global demand for sustainable infrastructure in cities. Project preparation, which includes strengthening technical, financial and regulatory steps, could require an additional $300 billion per year.
APUF-7 is fast approaching and we encourage those of you who have yet to register to kindly do so online at https://meetings.unescap.org/. For a step by step guide on how to register, please refer to the attached guide. A reminder that participants are responsible for their own arrangements for travel, accommodation, and visa to attend the APUF-7, unless you are invited and sponsored by any of the partners and organizers as speakers.
The next edition of the World Human Rights Cities Forum (WHRCF 2019) of Gwangju (South Korea) will be held from 30 September to 3 October 2019. The metropolitan government of Gwangju, which is a co-chair of the UCLG Committee on Social Inclusion, Participatory Democracy and Human Rights, co-organizes the WHRCF each year after the support of the Gwangju International Centre and our Committee.
Later this month the city center of London will be car-free for the day. More than 12 miles of roads in the English capital will be closed off from vehicles in an effort to encourage citizens to choose greener modes of transportation.
Though the car-free day is largely symbolic, London has joined other cities around the world looking at permanent ways to dramatically decrease the number of vehicles in its streets. Some have suggested eventually banning automobiles entirely.
Is this the age of the great metropolitan exodus? In 2018, the New York City area lost more than 100,000 people to other cities and suburbs—that’s 277 people leaving every day. The Los Angeles and Chicago areas lost, respectively, 201 and 161 residents each day. It’s quite a change from the post–Great Recession period, when an urban renaissance was supposedly sweeping the country and all three metro areas were experiencing a population boomlet.
The Tenth Session of the World Urban Forum (WUF10) will take place in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, from 8 –13 February 2020, and registration has opened for delegates to attend. In addition the WUF10 Event applications and the WUF10 Exhibition applications are also open.
The event will bring together government leaders, city professionals, civil society, international organizations, and global private sector experts to explore how we can plan, fund, and implement sustainable development paths for our cities. Organized jointly by the World Bank’s Global Platform for Sustainable Cities (GPSC), City of São Paulo, and the Brazilian Sustainable Cities Program, the event has received strategic support from the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communications, and the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
Urban traffic congestion is growing dramatically, according to a new report. So why aren’t drivers taking longer to get to work?
A new report from the Texas A&M Transportation Institute about commuters’ traffic woes is a doozy. The big takeaway: Drivers are wasting more time than ever “stopping and going in an ocean of brake lights” (to quote one news account). Since the Institute’s first Urban Mobility Report was issued in 1982, the number of hours per commuter lost to traffic delay has nearly tripled, climbing to 54 hours a year. The nationwide cost of gridlock has grown more than tenfold, to $166 billion a year.
This book explores the opportunities for incorporating responsive technologies in spatial designs to improve the quality of public spaces. It also presents inspiring examples from a two-year practice-based study of responsive public spaces carried out by a consortium of spatial designers, interaction designers and local stakeholders, headed by the Chair of Spatial Urban Transformation of Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences.
The 2nd edition of the "Venice City Solutions Series" will be held from 24 to 25 October 2019. It is an annual meeting, bringing together different issues which are key to implementing SDGs at the local level, with a specific focus on the role of local governments as key stakeholders involved in Agenda 2030.
The Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policies (DG REGIO) welcomes policymakers, urban practitioners, experts, researchers, sustainable cities promoters and all those interested in urban matters, to save the date for the fourth edition of the Cities Forum, which will take place in Porto, at the Alfândega Congress Centre.
The Economist Intelligence Unit aims to capture the concept of "urban resilience", the ability of cities to absorb and bounce back from shocks
Tokyo was named the world's safest city on Thursday by the Economist Intelligence Unit, in an index ranking cities' ability to handle everything from climate disasters to cyber attacks.
A large number of the cities have also gone under water. In fact, urban flooding is mainly due to poor drainage and faulty urban planning. The United Nations Environment Programme terms the flooding of cities as artificial and not natural. By artificial, it means that floods in cities happen because of the way infrastructure is designed in the cities, occupying the land mass and leaving little space for water sequestration, badly designed and constructed stormwater drains, which instead of collecting the storm water, spill it out on the roads and localities. Not to miss the absence of rainwater harvesting in the cities, which also leads to flooding.https://www.newsclick.in/Floods-India-Poor-Urban-Planning-Indian-Cities-No-Rainwater-Harvesting
What are citizens’ perspectives regarding environmental urban policies? How can the Urban Agenda for the EU help make your city greener? Join policymakers, local leaders, and experts at the “Greener cities, Greener Europe” conference on 7 October in Brussels to help answer this question.
The MORE Exchange Forum is a platform to discuss ideas and provide feedback on the tools developed by the MORE project. The Exchange Forum will convene for the first time on 1 October 2019 in Graz, Austria.
Infrastructure is not gender-neutral. Gaps in access to good infrastructure affect women disproportionately. Women need to have a voice in setting priorities in the design and the operation of infrastructure if it is to have the desired development impact.
Urbanists around the world swoon over Amsterdam’s cycling culture: residents trundling around cobbled streets with a child balanced on their handlebars or a friend on the back, everyone blissfully free from the road rage that infects car-heavy cities such as London and New York. What’s not to like?
Well, a few things, if you’re a pedestrian. An oncoming cyclist may barrel through a red light or crosswalk or suddenly swerve onto the sidewalk. Cyclists in Amsterdam often park their bikes haphazardly, cluttering street corners and blocking the passage of strollers, wheelchairs, and suitcase-bearing tourists.
Come for the thought-provoking content. Stay for the parties, breakfasts, happy hours, yoga sessions, gorgeous cityscape, and opportunities to network, connect and make sh*t happen!
This year, we have another boundary-pushing line-up on urban regeneration. Read more about what you can expect from each thematic session and catch the full program lineup. What else is new at reSITE 2019?
The Seventh Asia-Pacific Urban Forum (APUF-7) is fast approaching with two months to go before the opening!
Thousands are expected to attend this years Forum which is the largest and most diverse forum of its kind in Asia and the Pacific region.
We would like to encourage those of you who have not yet registered to submit your online registration. Please visit www.apuf7.org for more information and updates. You can easily find the online registration button and it takes only a few minutes. A guide on how to register is attached for your easy reference.
Cities across Europe are trialling schemes such as roof gardens and ‘mobile forests’ to embed more nature into urban areas in an effort to protect their citizens from climate change events like heatwaves, floods and droughts.
Cities are becoming harder places to live in as climate change brings higher temperatures, water scarcity and flooding that not only makes already crowded urban areas less comfortable but also put lives at risk.
But it may be possible to protect citizens from these threats by integrating more nature into urban areas, according to researchers.
Expanding cities are causing irreversible damage to climate, water resources and biodiversity around them as they grow. More than half of the world’s population is estimated to live in cities today, and the number is projected to rise further over the next decade. As cities emerge as the major economic drivers world over, it is essential to understand how our cities grow and ensure that the growth is sustainable.
Many cities are at a pivotal point in their smart city journey where they must make decisions over which technologies to use and which vendors to work with. The route they take could have serious implications in terms of what they achieve further down the line.
This webinar will look at why interoperability is fundamental to becoming a smart city, the progress being made around the world and how to overcome obstacles.
Register to attend Live or On-Demand after the event.
we proudly announce that REAL CORP 2020 is on the way and will be held in Aachen, Germany, in April 2020. Please save the date:
REAL CORP 2020
25th International Conference on Urban Planning and Regional Development in the Information Society
CITIES 20.50: HOT & COOL SHAPING SMART CHANGE FOR DYNAMIC 21st CENTURY CITY REGIONS
On March 2019, the City of Tampere organised two open events. Addressing issues related to energy and mobility, they first gave an open seminar on e-car charging points and smart district heating together with the Tampere Utility Company (Tampereen Sähkölaitos), and the Area21 project. Its objective is to convey information as to how a housing company gets its electric car charging stations and how it can also reduce the consumption of district heat by means of demand elasticity.
Green infrastructure, living shorelines and resilient design are among the recommendations announced by the city to insure against the impact of climate change and encourage smart growth.
Further archived news available on request from: Kate More