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UC expert to address world cities meeting

Marcus Butler

17 October 2016

University of Canberra’s foundation chair of urban and regional planning, Professor Barbara Norman, will join  more than 35,000 of the world’s foremost city and urban planners, sustainability experts and policy-makers to discuss the need to change and adapt our cities to environmental, social and technological changes, in  a once in 20-year meeting.

The United Nation’s Habitat3 conference is the largest meeting on cities in the world and Professor Norman will present during an international session on urban resilience.

“I’m excited to be able to participate in such a forum and present on planning for climate change and strategies to build urban resilience and the kind of partnerships that can be developed to deliver better outcomes,” Professor Norman said.

“Member states of the United Nations will be represented and I expect there’ll be a huge diversity of views, interest points and directions for everyone to talk over and consider.”

Professor Norman is the co-founder of Canberra Urban and Regional Futures (CURF), which is a research initiative based at the University of Canberra exploring issues of urbanisation, population pressures, the impacts of climate change and the environmental and social impacts of urban growth. She says it’s time for policy makers to start considering new models of urban development.

“Our planning and development bodies, including government and industry need to take an approach to sustainable development which promotes wellbeing by strengthening community welfare, equity and shared prosperity,” she said.

Habitat3 covers issues of housing and sustainable urban development. The conference aims to produce a renewed political commitment for sustainable urban development, address poverty and identify and address new and emerging challenges.

The forum will also examine what has been achieved in these areas since the last meeting in Istanbul, Turkey in 1996.

Habitat3 is being held in Quito, Ecuador and runs from 17-20 October.