High density inspiration.
Calling all Urban Planners! Be there and speak up when the WDS Congress brings together 6 major design disciplines with the mission of charting a new way forward for a future driven by design.
Programming features keynote addresses from Urban Planning’s leaders and luminaries, such as Belinda Tato, Pedro Ortiz, David Driskill and Nina-Marie Lister, while delegates are invited to speak up and take an active role in the Congress by submitting a proposal in answer to the 108 provocative topics. Panels, workshops and sessions will focus on the transformative power of design and explore a new vision of the designer as a creative leader in society, business, culture and governance.
With the participation of theInternational Federation for Housing and Planning and the Ordre des Urbanistes du Québec the Congress promises to be the world’s premier gathering of visionaries and trailblazers in design and planning.
Urban Planning Keynotes
“We should not forget we have a social responsibility, we create the habitats for people to live, relate, interact and become happy.”
"Do we need Smart Cities, or intelligent ones?"
WB, IDB, EU, UN, ADB, Un-Habitat
“...people care deeply about the place they live, and that's an incredible foundation for doing great things.”
The City of Seattle
Urban Planning Industry Keynotes
Urban Planning Topics
108 open and provocative questions drive the Congress program and have been designed to stimulate answers from all design-related disciplines.
Here are some of the topics that relate specifically to Urban Planning:
Growth, planning and urban forms
Sustainable development requires being at the forefront of, and anticipating, urban growth. How can we transform existing living environments so that they not only respect the capacity of ecosystems, but strengthen their balance and reveal their potential? What about “gentle densification”? What urban forms will be best adapted to maximize the hosting potential of our neighbourhoods, our cities, our metropolitan areas and regions?
Sustainable urban habitats: Social housing, condominiums, senior residences
Changing lifestyles and demographics worldwide require new and alternative living solutions. Sustainable living spaces take into account the choice and usage of materials, short and long term uses, and how sustainable practices are made integral to the design process. Questions include sustainable practices, local and cultural choices, material choices and building system integration.
Sensible (sub)urban revitalization
Density, accessibility, diversity, affordability: these are sought-after goals as planners and designers grapple with the costs of infrastructure, services, and impact mitigation. The importance of collaborating to remake existing (sub)urban landscapes is more important than ever in the global north and the global south. How can we ensure that new uses, users, and patterns of activity can be sensitively woven into existing environments that are often well-loved ‘just the way they are’? What roles can be played by civil-society actors as well as the state and private sector?
Urban design in the realm of possibility
Adapted governance based on the clarity of the projects and the accountability shared between decision-makers, designers and users, is at the intersection of possibilities. Social and functional diversity offers an opportunity for sought-after urban balances. Public spaces must play a central role in the reconstruction of the city, as long as their design allows transcending the function of mobility to be used as sightseeing and meeting places. How can designers contribute to the mutation of a regulated urban operation in an effort to promote opportunities for innovation?
Urban rejuvenation: Rethinking power
Renewing metropolitan areas often requires rethinking the power to act. Redevelopment of the physical environment, put forward by governments and assisted by private investors, aims to tackle a series of physical as well as social and economic problems. How can we generate interest among senior practitioners, as well as the next generation, to a change of approaches?
Resilient cities and territories
Extreme weather events impose the transformation of many aspects of our built environments. Issues of food and energy are also at the heart of resilience concerns- how do designers have to rethink our food and energy systems? What contribution can the designers make in the face of the economic decline of certain territories?
Urban design for temporary settings and crises
Emergency planning becomes a major concern in the face of cyclical, seasonal and weather changes. To what extent can we plan in advance, whether in contexts of rapid urbanization, where informal habitats have existed for a long time, or in the integration of climate refugees? Does the designer also have something to contribute in the short term, in contexts typically preceded by studies and long-term planning?