The Comfort Pursuit

Urban Thinkers Campus in Cairns and Townsville

I am very pleased to share the news that our proposal to host two Urban Thinkers Campus in support of the New Urban Agenda at JCU this year – one in Cairns (8th June) and one in Townsville (15th June) – has been approved. The official news is here.

The theme of our event is ‘Urban Liveability in Tropical Australia through Urban Diaries and Community Engagement’, and it will count on the participation of Chuck Wolfe as a visting Fulbright Specialist.

From the World Urban Campaign website:

The Urban Thinkers Campus (UTC) model is an initiative of UN-Habitat’s World Urban Campaign, conceived as an open space for critical exchange between all stakeholders and partners aims to promote sustainable urbanization. It is also envisaged as a platform to advocate for enlightened planning and design, community engagement, good urban governance and management of our cities as advocated in The City We Need and propose urban solutions in addressing urbanization challenges to urban futures.

Since the first Urban Thinkers in Campus organized in October 2014 to start engaging civil society and the private sector through an open process, the model has evolved and attracted a large participation from all urban stakeholders. The first phase (29 June 2015 to 20 February 2016) included 26 campuses and the participation of 7,847 men and women from 124 countries and 2,137 organizations, representing fourteen constituent groups: Local and Subnational Authorities, Research and Academia, Civil Society Organizations, Grassroots Organizations, Women, Parliamentarians, Children and youth, Business and industries, Foundations and Philanthropies, Professionals, Trade Unions and Workers, Farmers, Indigenous people and the Media. That process led to the formulation of The City We Need 2.0, approved in March 2016 by the WUC Partners, conceived as an action oriented manifesto towards the Habitat III Conference, with key messages, principles and drivers of changes for achieving sustainable urbanization.

After Habitat III in Quito, the WUC steering Committee decided to continue engaging stakeholders in the post-Habitat III era by launching Urban Thinkers Campus Phase 2 (UTC 2.0). The UTC 2.0 was envisaged to be action oriented which will focus on developing actual action plans and implementable road maps in order to implement the New Urban Agenda. Similarly, the UTCs to be held in Phase 3 will continue to broaden and strengthen the engagement of urban stakeholders on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda; define priorities and means of actions; gather individual organizations commitments and agree to roles and responsibilities in the implementation of specific actions. They shall also define action plans combining all priority actions and commitments of stakeholders engaged in the priority actions and agree on an implementable road map with key milestones towards the implementation of priority actions to deliver the New Urban Agenda. Finally, they will be required to share their commitments, action plans and road map publicly through the WUC outreach channels.

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