Urban Thinkers Campus
UN-Habitat’s World Urban Campaign – WUC
Barcelona, 16 th-18th of November 2015
The Urban Thinkers Campus is an initiative of UN-Habitat’s World Urban Campaign – WUC, conceived as an open space for critical exchange between urban actors who believe that urbanization is an opportunity and can lead to positive urban transformations. It is also intended as a platform to build consensus between partners engaged in addressing urbanization challenges and proposing solutions to urban futures.
The inaugural Urban Thinkers Campus, which took place in October 2014 in Caserta/Italy, was organized on the theme “The City We Need”, and brought together urban thinkers and established UN-Habitat partner organizations and constituencies to reflect on current urban challenges and trends and to propose a new paradigm. The new paradigm will be a contribution to the New Urban Agenda, which will be delivered at the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III summit, Quito) in October 2016.
Building on the previous deliberations of the World Urban Campaign, this inaugural Campus was meant to gather new thinking and strengthen the first campaign position entitled “The Future We Want – The City We Need” that was prepared from September to December 2013 and launched in March 2014 in New York prior to the Seventh Session of the World Urban Forum (April 2014, Medellin). Through an inclusive debate and review process driven by partners sessions focused on “The City We Need”, the Campus has allowed all participants to express their views.
It has opened space for debate, learning, consensus building, and drafting between a large number of participants. The meeting outcomes were a second version of key principles of “The City We Need”, agreed upon in the drafting session of all constituent groups, as well as distinct “The City We Need” positions from each partner constituent group.
The First Urban Thinkers Campus was acknowledged by participants as a model to pursue for further debates in order to bring partners around the table to negotiate principles, policies, and action planning on key issues that need to be addressed at the Habitat III Conference and built up in the New Urban Agenda. The World Urban Campaign Steering Committee recommended that other Urban Thinkers Campuses be solicited by the WUC Secretariat in order to amplify the urban thinkers’ movement towards Habitat III. Those new campuses would allow strengthening “The City We Need” position of partners further.
By holding future Urban Thinkers Campuses, this space can be opened to new regions, partners, and themes in order to facilitate comprehensive and diverse feedback from as many groups and perspectives as possible before Habitat III. The outcomes of the future Urban Thinkers Campuses will feed into the Zero Draft of the New Urban Agenda, as decided during the first meeting of the “General Assembly of Partners (GAP)” held in Nairobi, Kenya on 13 April 2015.
Amongst others, the GAP aims to engage in an inclusive dialogue to develop common positions on key principles and thematic areas to be articulated in the New Urban Agenda that build on “The Future We Want, The City We Need” and the future “Framework for Post 2015 Development” and consider inputs provided by the GAP Partner Constituent Groups, Urban Thinkers Campuses, as well as other relevant meetings.
The Urban Thinkers Campus wishes to have the participation of the best experts in housing. The aim of this meeting is to group together a hundred top specialists in different housing subjects that define the two days discussion sessions.
The promoters’ organizations, members of the WUC, with the support of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area, acting as Technical Secretariat, invite to the Urban Thinkers Campus to be held in Barcelona from 16th to 18th of November 2015.
The conclusions of the UTC, will be presented on 18 November at 9h30 am on Smart City World Congress framework in Barcelona.