What You'll Learn


The world’s first virtual city festival crosses countries and time zones to explore the best of urban life, to learn from our cities, explore them, shape them, share them, fight for them. Come be challenged and inspired. Come explore the design, culture and economies of cities today, their sustainability and the well-being and inclusivity of our communities.
All Stages
City Stage
World Stage
Virtual Experiences
THU, OCT. 22
The Future of Fashion in a Post-COVID World
city stage, New York

Valerie Steele, Director of The Museum at FIT, checks in with Eugene Rabkin, of StyleZeigeist.com, about fashion’s world cities. How did globalization transform the fashion system? Which cities are most important—and why? How do Paris and New York compare? And what will the future of fashion be like, post-pandemic?

Welcome to WRLDCTY
city stage

Welcoming remarks and overview of how to explore WRLDCTY from your own home and immerse yourself in unique insights from city leaders, top urban thinkers, and virtual experiences spanning music, culture, art and food from cities across the globe as we make history together in the world’s largest virtual city event. 

Rising to the Challenge: Global Mayors Talk Public Health
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

From COVID to the ever-evolving health impacts of natural disasters, mayors across the world have been tasked with managing an unprecedented number of overlapping public health crises in 2020. How do you create a nimble public health strategy capable of effectively, efficiently targeting public health crises as they arise? How do you anticipate and prepare for possible surprises? How can city hall leverage partnerships to maximize resources and impact, and keep all city residents safe and healthy? In this session, mayors across the world share their experiences and public health recommendations for 2020 and the years ahead.

The 15-Minute City
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Developed by Professor Carlos Moreno at the Sorbonne in Paris, the concept of “la ville du quart d’heure” is one in which residents can fulfill their typical daily needs for goods, services and recreation within a 15-minute reach on foot or by bike. But how do cities make the transition and can this concept be applied on a global scale? This panel moderated by former City of Toronto Chief Planner Jennifer Keesmaat will bring together leading urban designers from the U.S., Europe and Asia to explore how such an approach to more localized urban design could transform cities around the world in the years to come.

Greater Than Ever
city stage, New York

Former New York Deputy Mayor and current Sidewalk Labs CEO Dan Doctoroff played an instrumental role in leading the recovery and transformation of New York City after 9/11. In this session, Dan shares lessons learned from past crises that cities can apply today along with new actions and policies required to not only foster the recovery of global cities in the current crisis, but emerge greater than ever in the future.

Innovation in Urban Tourism
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

No sector has been more impacted by the crisis than travel and tourism. In this session moderated by former Microsoft Partner Scott Erickson, the leader of Welcome City Lab, the world’s largest incubator dedicated to travel and tourism, the director of tourism for Tel Aviv Global and former head of strategy for Wonderful Copenhagen will come together and shares insights on innovation in urban tourism and what travel might look like in the future.

City of trust: a conversation with Happy City author Charles Montgomery
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Nothing matters more to human flourishing than social trust. High-trust cities are happier. They are wealthier. And they are more likely to bounce back from natural disasters. But trust in governments, institutions and leaders has been under attack across much of the world. Rebuilding trust at all levels is crucial if we want to meet the pressing challenges of this age–including pandemic recovery. In this session with Happy City author Charles Montgomery, we will explore the surprising power of trust in cities. In urban experiments from Denver to Dubai, Montgomery and his team have demonstrated how urban design and policy can influence our relationships with neighbors, strangers and our governments. He’ll offer pragmatic advice for designers, decision makers and city-builders who want to renew their communities by deepening the bonds of trust that keep all of us strong.

Walkability: The Best Motivation, Means and Measure for Making Sustainable Cities
city stage, New York

In his bestselling books on urban design, Jeff Speck explains why and how a sharp focus on a comprehensive framework of “deep walkability” provides a clear path to saving our cities and the planet. In this visually compelling harangue, Jeff shares the four key reasons to fight for walkability and the four key ways to achieve it.

Savor Cape Town’s Wines from Township to Terroir
experience stage

CAPE TOWN – Escape to one of the planet’s premier growing regions—Cape Town, South Africa!—in this high-end sensory immersion. Discover exclusive recipes from Cape Town’s renowned chefs and wine pairing principles from the city’s sommeliers in an exclusive journey into the Cape Town terroir that’s coveted by wine and food lovers all over the world.

Housing in an Age of Unprecedented Demand
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

A much-needed discussion exploring possible future and outcomes about the issue of affordability in the world’s most coveted cities. As major urban centers experience a population boom and with it, skyrocketing rents and a dire lack of affordable housing, citizens need answers and blueprints for resolution. This panel endeavors to offer some vital first steps for cities around the world.

The Future of the Experience Economy
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Much has changed since B. Joseph Pine II first identified and wrote about the Experience Economy in the 1990s. With 2020 bringing both the third release of his seminal book The Experience Economy—with a new preview on Competing for Customer Time, Attention, and Money—and the devastating effects of COVID-19 on the global economy, it’s the perfect time to catch up with Joe to understand what all this means for today and into the future… including what lies beyond today’s Experience Economy.

Design for Distancing
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The pandemic has forced cities to reconsider how we value, utilize and share public spaces. In this panel, Design Core Detroit CEO Olga Stella leads a conversation in sharing and discussing examples of ways cities have used design to modify the public realm to respond to the pandemic crisis.

Towards a More Inclusive Economy
city stage, New York

Over the past decade, so-called Superstar Cities like New York have led the growth of the global economy, but their gains were not evenly distributed. While GDP per capita grew significantly, so too did income inequality. With the pandemic laying bare the widening gap between the haves and the have-nots, New York City Economic Development Corporation Chief Economist Fred Olayele and Center for an Urban Future Executive Director Jonathan Bowles discuss the actions we can take to not only rebuild the city’s economy, but make it more inclusive in the recovery.

The Age of the Participant
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Today, in a COVID-19 reality, cities are empty but regions are full, capturing a hunger for open, rural spaces. In order to win back visitor and citizen trust and spending, cities need to give people something to do to fill hotel beds and restaurants again. Join Moment Factory’s Amahl Hazelton and Resonance Consultancy President Chris Fair to discover how experiential urbanism hold the key to rebuilding urban travel by tapping into the global shift from consumption to transformation—a shift from observer to participant for citizens and visitors alike.

The Future of Third Places
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Social spaces apart from our homes and work play a key role in anchoring community life and facilitating social interactions and collaboration. But social distancing has limited our access to these places, whether they be cafes, churches or social clubs. Will life return to normal when the pandemic passes or will these places take on new roles if more people live and work remotely? This panel of leading urban designers will share their thoughts on how architecture, social ergonomics and technology-based experiences might shape the future of third places in our cities.

A Phygital World
city stage, New York

Phygital experiences are transforming the cultural and retail landscape. In a wide-ranging conversation, we’ll explore how Time Out and their partners use phygital to connect the online and offline worlds to create closer and human customer experiences.

Seed an Urban Farm with Brooklyn Grange
experience stage

NEW YORK – Discover all there is to know about urban farming from Brooklyn Grange Co-founder Anastasia Cole Plakias. Anastasia walks you through Brooklyn Grange, the world’s largest rooftop soil farmland and leading rooftop farming and intensive green roofing business in the U.S. She shares her tips on urban farming and answers any questions you may have live.

“After” Tourism - What’s Next for Travel?
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

After years of record-breaking growth in visitor arrivals, some cities were struggling with so-called “overtourism”—too many visitors in parts of the city at the same time. With the pandemic putting virtually all corporate travel, meetings and events on pause, cities are rethinking what travel to urban destinations might look like after the pandemic. Will corporate travel bounce back? Will meetings and events return? This session with the CEOs of Tourism Toronto and Los Angeles Tourism will discuss their perspective on what the future might hold for travel to cities in the years to come.

Building Cities of Wellness
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Wellness is emerging as a dominant consumer lifestyle value, but not well incorporated into the design, operation and governance of cities. In this session, Global Wellness Institute Senior Research Fellows Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnson lead a discussion with experts on how to build a city of wellness, using policies and public-private partnerships to create an environment that enables and supports healthy behaviors and lifestyles.

City Branding with Design: Snapshots of Hong Kong
city stage, Hong Kong

Cities in the world are receiving fundamental changes due to widespread lockdowns and limitations in travel. As a city that never sleeps, how has Hong Kong coped with the new normal and strived for resilience via creativity and design? This panel discussion is brought to you by Hong Kong Design Centre, where the speakers will share the latest snapshots from Hong Kong, a city which not only manages to maintain its vibrancy but also continues to explore its most unique charisma with Design. A cross-disciplinary discussion about why experiential design, placemaking, creative business models, design thinking and growth mindset are essential for value creation, identity building and city branding.

Hong Kong’s Unique Role as Asia’s Financial Powerhouse
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Hong Kong’s role as a global financial center has been called into question due to social unrest in 2019 and ongoing geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and China. But, a close look shows there is no other place in Asia that connects the dots as much as Hong Kong does for fundraising, wealth management, insurance, banking, fintech, globalization of the RMB and deal-making. Hong Kong remains the unique financial services connecting point between China and the world, and vice versa. Join this esteemed panel to explore how the market will develop in a more polarized world and what the threats and opportunities are for Hong Kong’s role as a global financial center.

Coping with COVID: Hard Lessons, Best Practices
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

As one of the world’ most densely populated cities, Hong Kong has introduced strict measures to curb the spread of COVID-19—but has so far avoided the total lockdown seen in other major economies. It’s a constant, three-way tussle between protecting public health, minimizing economic fallout and managing public acceptance. What are the health lessons learned? How do you keep public transport running smoothly and safely? How does a global hospitality brand cope across cultures and continents?

Enhancing City Values Through Art
city stage, Hong Kong

Art is no longer confined to high-end galleries or wealthy collectors. Creative elements are increasingly weaved into daily life, enriching the urban living experience for residents and visitors. Where once museums reigned supreme, now art-meets-retail malls are emerging as creative hotspots, while gallery owners have always adapted and evolved to changing tastes and habits. How far will it go? Why do people crave art? Can art survive in a money-making world?

FRI, OCT. 23
Get your First Gong Bath with Wellbeing Guru Martha Collard
experience stage

HONG KONG – Turning to the wisdom of the past, Catalyst for Emotional Wellbeing Founder Martha Collard offers ancient practices that are as relevant today as they were thousands of years ago. These solutions, tried and tested over time, are effective, require minimal resources, are scalable and suitable for all age groups.

Achieving Liveability With High Density
city stage, Singapore

This keynote explores how Singapore adopts an integrated approach towards master-planning and urban governance, balancing high density with high liveability and sustainability outcomes. This is a rare look into the lauded Singapore model of urban innovation and efficiency.

Wander Through West Kowloon's Art and Culture
experience stage

HONG KONG – Introducing the world’s biggest cultural district project: West Kowloon Cultural District (WKCD). Find out what’s on and what’s coming soon with a behind-the-scenes look at this prime 40-hectare site on Hong Kong’s iconic Victoria Harbour. The WKCD will house treasures of the Forbidden City, world-class collections of visual culture, Chinese opera, musical extravaganzas and open-air festivals. Don’t miss this sneak peek at a visionary project that is set to change the face of the Asian arts and culture sector.

Welcome to the Traderhood™
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The workforce is changing: the days of old-school “big shed” industrial park—surrounded by barbed wire fences that only operate Monday to Friday with no amenity or public transport—are over. Andrew Hoyne likes to refer to “District 21s,” new industrial hubs which add value to the surrounding community. They are designed for human scale that, in turn, gives people permission to enter and walk around. District 21s pays attention to the fine grain, food and beverage and human experiences, creating a unique and compelling destination with a magnetic drawcard seven days a week. These solutions become meaningful destinations and as a result drive higher rental income and increase the asset value of the site itself.

Design Better
city stage, Singapore

With our world in an accelerated mode of transformation, cities need to reform the way we define our environment and how we live together. Exponential change is outpacing our ability to respond and a fundamental shift needs to occur to redefine how we think about design. To create better cities we often look at the physical objects, to create positive and negative space to define our private and public areas. Today’s architectural education and practice lacks the focus on human outcomes. To design better we must change design and define the ultimate focus away from object creation to new ways to think, feel and do.

Embedding Placemaking into Policies
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Placemaking has become vital in highlighting the importance of places, people, and public life in fostering strong communities and creating vibrancy. Now as cities are grappling with the evolving challenges of the pandemic and many people have been kept out of public spaces, there is an urgent need to embed placemaking into policies in order to build community resiliency that can withstand or even thrive in challenging times.

All Cities Are Post-Traumatic Cities
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The velocity at which cities evolve often risks the endemic cultural and built environment values—especially in emerging cities. What does it mean to have a city that amplifies history and tradition and embraces progress and the future? And what must cities do to retain the inclusivity that attracted residents in the first place? Join Dori Nguyen, managing partner of Utopia, builders of urban innovation ecosystem for emerging cities, as her panel explores these challenges facing emerging, fast-growing cities.

The Next Great Migration?
city stage, Singapore

As the unprecedented global COVID-19 lockdown eventually ends, hundreds of millions of people will reevaluate where they live. Many will move in search of health-conscious “green zones,” places less vulnerable to climate change, locations amenable to remote work, or simply look for more affordable or tolerant cities and towns. Where will this next great migration drive humanity? Which places will be the winners and losers?

Tiptoe into Choreography with the Hong Kong Ballet
experience stage

HONG KONG – Hong Kong Ballet teamed up with UK-based award-winning choreographer Corey Baker to produce this one-of-kind performance, taking audiences from serene marshlands on the outskirts of the city to a green oasis atop skyscrapers in the heart of the city, all in Hong Kong. The music was composed by acclaimed multi-instrumentalist FKJ, creating a truly memorable performance.

How to Go Wild in Singapore
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The pursuit of open, green spaces for respite and recreation in cities has picked up speed with our global fight against the pandemic. But the planet’s most innovative cities are going a step further, to realize the potential of rewilding the concrete jungle and reaping benefits to resilience as a result. Join a panel of green and public space experts, in conversation with Sarah Ichioka, an urbanist, curator, writer and head of Desire Lines, a strategic consultancy for environmental, cultural, and social-impact organizations and initiatives, to explore Singapore’s plans and potentials to invite more nature back into its tropical “City in a Garden”.

Going Dutch: Translating Dutch Cycling Ideas to a Global Context
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Transport planners and advocates have long admired the Netherlands’ impressive cycling infrastructure and culture, and frequently visit to marvel at its bustling bike lanes and traffic-calmed streets. But coming from more sprawling, car-dominated environments, it’s difficult to imagine replicating their incredible success, where the average resident now pedals nearly 1,000 km per year. Discover the key principles that were developed by the Dutch over the past five decades, draw out concrete lessons for cities looking to follow their lead, and learn how some of these ideas are already being implemented, as these regions face a crisis forcing them to re-evaluate how they allocate space on their curbs and streets.

The DNA of Cities: How Cities Evolve and Recover
city stage, London

Greg Clark discusses how individual cities, and waves of cities, have evolved, demonstrating their role in innovation, sustainability, and social progress in order to recover from shocks and seize opportunities. He assesses how far we can ‘de-code’ and ‘re-code’ cities and argues that our current task is not so much to promote the agendas of single cities, but rather to reposition and re-purpose the urbanization process as a whole.

Shifting Scales: A New Lens for Cities
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

COVID-19 has upended our lives on a global scale and undermined the very premise of urban life. The pandemic has brought to the fore conversations around density and our urban way of living. Suddenly, our neighborhoods, our streets, our homes took on a new dimension. Reunited by BETC PLACES, a panel of leading Paris experts comes together to discuss how cities are shifting scales, from the super-local approach (the 15-minute city) to the large metropolitan models such as the Greater Paris case.

Bigger is Better
city stage, London

Chris Boardman is a former British racing cyclist who won an individual pursuit gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics and broke the world hour record three times. As Cycling and Walking Commissioner for Greater Manchester, Chris is leading an ambitious 1.5 billion-pound, 10-year program to create the very first city region in the U.K. to have a fully joined-up cycling and walking network; the most comprehensive in Britain covering 1,800 miles. In this conversation, Chris shares some of the key lessons learned in building the plan and why it’s important to aim big in order to create a vision that people can feel proud of if you want to create meaningful change in your city.

Cities for the People of Tomorrow
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

In this thought-provoking session with renowned urban planner Jan Gehl and architect Bjarke Ingels, urban futurist and Recoded City author Thomas Ermacora brings together Copenhagen’s leading urban thought-leaders to share insights and lessons learned in city building during the pandemic. They’ll discuss what the people of tomorrow will want and need from cities, the urban utopias we should be dreaming of, and how to create them in both developed and developing cities around the world.

Get the Beat with Anna Bjurstam's Meditation Drumming
experience stage

STOCKHOLM – Wellness pioneer Anna Bjurstam provides a meditation drumming session from her hometown of Stockholm.

The Creative Bureaucracy
city stage, London

Public bureaucracies across the globe face a converging, escalating crisis. The rise of civic movements is a reflection of this and they are demanding more say in how decisions are made. In this session, Charles Landry, a renowned author and facilitator of complex urban change projects, discusses how governments can get creative in responding to the current crisis and help create a fairer, more equal world buttressed by an incentives and regulatory regime to match.

Restarting Startups & the Innovation Economy
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

While the true nature of the impact of COVID-19 on the early-stage startup market has yet to be illustrated fully, early data suggests a 40% reduction in seed investment in Q2, 2020. While early-stage startups may struggle for their first check, companies at later stages of growth have been on a tear, with no slowdown in sight. Given these conflicting signals around fundraising, and the new realities of remote work, how should entrepreneurs be thinking about go-to-market, building an organizational culture, and runway? What is the role of the public sector in helping entrepreneurs grow, scale, and create jobs? Where are founders seeing opportunity, and how has the process of raising capital changed?

The Butcher, Baker & Candlestick Maker
city stage, London

Local merchants and boutiques are the anchors of high-streets and commercial districts. But with the shut-down and turbo-charged shift by consumers to shopping online, what does the future hold for retail in our towns and cities? This panel will discuss the changing face of the retail landscape and key issues and opportunities in helping high streets to recover in a post-pandemic world.

Music is the Main Ingredient
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

How does music influence the dishes served at the world’s most memorable restaurants? Listen in on a revealing chat among the acclaimed chefs from LASA and Empress Market about the excruciating work of making the right playlist and how music can level up the diner’s experience.

Namaste your Day with Sunrise Yoga from Santa Monica Pier
experience stage

LOS ANGELES – Join seasoned yoga teacher and Reiki Master Justin Randolph for a an-level yoga class on Santa Monica Pier.

The New Urban Condition
city stage, London

Professor of Sociology at Columbia University and author of The Global City Saski Sassen shares decades of research on cities exploring new ways to think about the city and how new generations are transforming the essence of cities.

All Change? Cultural in a New Context
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The most recent chapter of globalization, driven by 30 years of deregulation and relentless advances in technology, has tended to homogenize the world’s cities. As cities compete in open economies for mobile capital, knowledge workers and high-end tourists they have sought to attract these assets and resources by standing out as brands with distinctive identities. Culture and art have been vital in that fight, but are they resilient enough to find a meaningful and relevant role in the evolving political economy of cities?

Building the City
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The popularity of cities has been a boon for development in cities around the world, making them both more prosperous and vibrant. But after months of social distancing, will we return to dense urban work and living spaces after the pandemic or seek out new spaces and experiences? In this session moderated by Centre for Cities Chief Executive Andrew Carter with leading real estate developers, we discuss how they are adapting buildings today, and where and what they are planning to build tomorrow.

Brush Up on Tulsa's Century-Long Fight Against Racism
experience stage

TULSA, OK – Tulsa, Oklahoma’s rich history, unknown to many, is filled with both triumph and tragedy. Be sure to catch the emotional story of Tulsa’s Race Massacre, culminating with its centennial commemoration in 2021, and how the city is now rising on an international stage with a thriving cultural scene. Now more than ever before, Tulsa’s story is being told and inspiring cities all over the world in the global conversation on racism.

This is Not the End of Cities
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

While the COVID-19 pandemic and recent racial justice protests across the globe have challenged our cities, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create more equitable, inclusive communities for the future. Steven Pedigo, Resonance VP and professor at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with world-renowned urbanist Richard Florida for 1-1 discussion on how he views the future.

Understanding Equity in Mobility
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

As cities around the world strive to expand mobility networks for “All Ages and Abilities,” the challenge is to ensure that these facilities actually meet the needs of everyone regardless of age, gender, race and ability. How can cities truly create equitable streets, where are they succeeding, and where is there still room to learn? Assembling a range of voices with different backgrounds from the planning, design and policy community, this panel seeks to broaden your understanding by speaking directly to the people most impacted by a lack of equitable mobility planning. It is only by learning from each other that we can begin to understand and create streets that are for everyone.

Building New Pathways to Success
city stage, Toronto

Building a community-focused ecosystem of entrepreneurship can unleash the potential of new civic minded creators and innovators. Join us for a discussion with some of Toronto’s pioneers who are responsible for leading the development of new pathways that break down traditional barriers, and propel individuals toward success.

Sharpen your Cityscape Shot
experience stage

Improve your travel stories. Discover how to take the perfect cityscape shot with tips and tricks to shooting urban landscapes on your phone, with Toronto as the subject and the inspiration.

Buenos Aires’ Neighborhood 31: Building a more inclusive community
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Neighborhood 31 in Buenos Aires is one of the most economically challenged communities in the world. However, the Buenos Aires’ Integracion Project looks to change that by fully including Neighborhood 31 in the future of the city. Steven Pedigo, Resonance VP and professor at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with City of Buenos Aires Secretary for Social and Urban Integration Diego Fernadez for a discussion on the future of building more equitable communities in the global south.

Toronto’s Sonic Landscape
city stage, Toronto

Toronto’s long-flourishing Urban and Hip Hop music scene continues to dominate the mainstream sonic landscape. Toronto is uniquely positioned to offer up a coalition of creators who are introducing new sounds and textures, and crossing over the traditional boundaries often found in hip hop. We sit down with a few of them to explore the landscape that makes up the sound of Toronto.

See Graffiti as Art
experience stage

Explore Toronto’s street art from the perspective of a local graffiti artist. Learn about the evolution of the art form, the lexicon, and the cultural significance found in these living canvasses.

The Shifting Mobility Market: From 0 to 60
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The mobility industry is changing fast. New mobility providers, services and sectors are cropping up daily. Automotive OEMs are making huge investments in electric mobility, and prompted by COVID-19, are offering new ways to engage with customers. Ride-hail companies are offering transportation planning to government customers. Micro mobility companies may be on the verge of profitability. Yet, city governments—key cogs in implementing new mobility options at scale—are far behind as they grapple with an unprecedented public health crisis, record rates of unemployment and civil unrest. In a time of extreme urban innovation, how can cities and mobility companies meet consumer demand for more sustainable, efficient and seamless transportation? How likely are AVs going to be a part of the equation? What are some of the most promising paths forward and can they be replicated?

Solved: How the World’s Great Cities Are Fixing the Climate Crisis
city stage, Toronto

If our planet is going to survive the climate crisis, we need to act rapidly. We cannot wait for national governments to agree on how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and keep the average temperature rise to within 1.5 degrees. C40’s David Miller, the former mayor of Toronto, argues that cities are taking action on climate change because they can—and because they must. Using data from his upcoming book, he makes a clear-eyed and compelling case that, if replicated at pace and scale, the actions of leading global cities point the way to creating a more sustainable planet.

Can Vancouverism Change the World?
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

“Vancouverism” is an internationally known term that describes a relatively new kind of city living. Characterized by slim towers for density, widely separated by low-rise buildings for light, air, and views, it combines a deep respect for nature with enthusiasm for busy, engaging, active streets and dynamic urban life. In this session, Vancouver City Manager Sadhu Johnston will lead a discussion on the lessons learned in building one of the world’s most liveable and sustainable cities and the key principles and practices that can be adopted by cities around the world.

Mix your Mind with Toronto's Genre-Bending Musicians
experience stage

A collaborative concert performance featuring internationally esteemed Toronto-based artists like DJ Skratch Basid, re,verse, Andrew Forde and more, against the backdrop of Toronto’s iconic city skyline.

Badaboum Club Live Stream
experience stage

PARIS – Experience one of Europe’s hottest clubs from an exclusive live-stream from Paris-based Badaboum Club.

Unlock an Acclaimed Chef's Best-Kept Secrets
experience stage

SANTA MONICA – Susan Feniger takes you on an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of her award-winning restaurant Socalo and share her best recipes and secrets with you for a gastronomical journey.

Creating and Branding Transformational Urban Destinations for the Post-COVID Traveler
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Cities fighting for recovery, visitors and investment don’t just need to pivot their branding. They need to undergo a transformation as urban destinations for the post-pandemic traveler. Join this hands-on discussion outlining actual methods, practices and tools destinations and DMOs need to adopt to contribute to designing and building a post-COVID, transformative destination committed to regenerative thinking and resilience.

Party the Planet with Exclusive DJ Sets
experience stage

GLOBAL CITIES – Selina, the global hospitality group for digital nomads, takes over our experience stage live from the world’s best cities for a series of DJ sets.

The Secret Powers of City Ravines
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Award-winning Guatemala-based Architecture firm Taler ACA shares learnings from their initiative Barranco Invertido, which transformed Ravines in Guatemala City as a territorial assets to filter water, clean the air, guarantee access to public and recreational spaces, provide urban connectivity and become active territories for other forms of development. In the current context, the ravine-city presents an opportunity to propose alternatives for transformation from the perspective of sustainability post-COVID-19 towards the new normal. This work has been awarded first prize at the Biennale Spazio Pubblico Roma 2017 and was featured in the International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam’s Main Exhibition.

SAT, OCT. 24
The Less-Is-More Future of Hospitality
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

As the global pandemic has disrupted the whole fabric of human physical connection, the hospitality industry is divided over what’s next. Will we just bounce back into our patterns of excess, or is there a collective realization afoot around creating authentic and purposeful experiences that will have profound effects on hotel innovation and new expectations. Join Tulsi Grover, Studio Leader at Hassell, as he leads a distinguished panel in divining what hospitality means today and tomorrow.

Food Security Lessons for the Planet
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

As supply chain disruptions become commonplace, citizens all over the world find themselves often asking about what’s grown locally and what’s imported. What they find is often disconcerting: a few days’ supply and little contingency planning. But Singapore is different and offers a blueprint for the planet. Join Chintan Raveshia, Arup Cities Leader in Singapore, and a panel of food security experts to explore the city’s emergent urban food manufacturing, focus on the circular economy and resulting food science and tech sector and investment.

The Conscious Design Behind Liveable and Loveable Cities
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Citymaking continues to evolve as an artform—beyond functional, and towards a curated, intentional experience for urban dwellers. Can cities of the future be designed with dimensions such as the happiness of city inhabitants,and the loveability of the built environment in mind? Join this lively discussion to find out.

How Can Nightlife Reinvent Itself
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Nightlife is going through its most turbulent times. The industry has no choice but to adapt to a new normal and reinvent itself. Leading figures from around the world will share their real-world perspectives in discussing what the future of nightlife looks like and what it needs to do to survive.

Stop Everything with a Global Meditation Journey
experience stage

SINGAPORE – In a world that never stops, where external noise rages on and internal voices are amplified, what better way to carry on than to create a space for us all to simply sit and rest in moments of stillness and silence? Across global cities, social meditation spaces beckon. Get inspired on making use of public and private spaces for practicing mindfulness and fostering good mental health. Wherever you may be watching WRLDCTY on Oct. 24, we invite you to join us for a global Big Sit, streamed from Singapore.

Music Festivals in Urban Public Spaces
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Festivals can transform cities by spotlighting and activating overlooked spaces. Go inside what has changed in Montreal, Melbourne, and Buenos Aires with Nicolas Cournoyer, co-founder of Piknic Electronik, and city partners, as they dive into the evolving role of city festivals in helping re-imagine urban space and reshape urban identity.

Shaping the Future of Remote Working
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The pandemic is accelerating a trend that has shaped the lifestyle of millions of millennials: the art of remote working for digital nomads. Learning from their unique concept that combines work / travel and play, Selina founder Rafi Museli discusses how the current opportunity is shaping the future of work.

The New Landscape of Urban Live Sports & Entertainment
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Athletes, entrepreneurs and performers in entertainment and sports are immediately adapting to a new environment in the cities in which they live and beyond. The restrictions on the ability to play and perform live in venues has pushed entrepreneurs to pivot their startups and performers to seek new avenues to create and deliver content. Will these changes forever evolve the relationship between athletes and performers and their fans and audiences? And how will cities be impacted by so many of these changes? Join us as our panelists discuss the future of urban live sports and entertainment.

Up your Insta Travel Game with Pia Riverola
experience stage

MEXICO CITY – Travel photographer Pia Riverola hosts a live, interactive travel photography masterclass where she shares her tips and techniques with participants, teaching WRLDCTY attendees how to take the best travel photographs.

Open Space for Everyone
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Open space has never been in more demand than it is right now as citizens seek refuge in parks and open spaces in our cities. But how do we share that space and are their learnings we can apply to the design of parks and green spaces to make them more inclusive and accessible to all in the future? This panel will discuss the role open space plays in the wellbeing of the city and how we might improve access to it for everyone in the city.

Learn your First Burlesque Moves with Marcy Richardson
experience stage

NEW YORK – An exclusive musical and acrobatic performance with a behind the scenes look of Bushwick, one of Brooklyn’s most avant-garde neighborhoods for street art and burlesque. Hear her story and experience the thrill of marrying aerial arts, acrobatic pole, and live classical singing in a performance by burlesque star and NYC nightlife staple Marcy Richardson.

Demystify the Mystic with Austin's Be Where How?
experience stage

Using nature visuals, astrophotography, meditative soundscapes, and guided voiceover, “An Experience of Being Awareness” is a visual meditation experience through layers of thought patterns.

A New Recipe for Restaurants
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

Few sectors have been impacted more by the pandemic than the restaurant industry. Many restaurateurs have pivoted to take out delivery and temporary outdoor dining in the short term, but what does the long term future hold for restaurants? In this session, Vaughn Tan, author of The Uncertainty Mindset, will facilitate a discussion between restaurateurs and industry suppliers on how communities can support local restaurants today and what food services might look like as an industry tomorrow.

How to be a Superhero in Your City
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

In cities around the world, hundreds of men and women are right now donning masks and colorful costumes to perform public services as “real-life superheroes.” Some attempt to fight crime, others help the homeless, but all are trying to improve their communities. The COVID-19 pandemic has created more need for such help than ever before. Join Peter Nowak, veteran journalist and author of “The Rise of Real-Life Superheroes and the Fall of Everything Else,” and a panel of costumed crusaders as they discuss how regular citizens can get involved with saving their city.

Get Spin-Savvy with DJ Masha
experience stage

LOS ANGELES – Learn the art of DJing with LA based touring DJ Masha. She’ll break down the basics of using CDJs- the current industry standard, how to mix two songs, where to look for new music and give an overview of her experience in the electronic music industry.

Climate Change Solutions Start With Gen Y
world stage (PRO PASS ONLY)

The impact of climate change is being felt by everyone around the world amidst the fear that humanity is losing the fight against it. While Gen X is worried about what it will mean for future generations, this panel explores inspiring examples from Gen Y—and those who are trying to find solutions. The Anant Fellowship for Climate Action selects 20 “climate action solutionaries” who are using innovative approaches to mitigate climate change. The panel will stimulate a discussion about unique ideas for mitigating climate change from Gen Y.

More Sessions Being Added Daily!

Greg Clark

Global Advisor, Future Cities & New Industries

Greg Clark is an urbanist who has worked with more than 300 cities over a 30-year career. He is Senior Advisor, Future Cities and New Industries, at HSBC, Chairman of The Business of Cities, a research group based at UCL STEaPP, a Global Fellow at Brookings Institution and at the Urban Land Institute, and Chairman of the Investment and Programmes Committees at Transport for London. Greg provides thought leadership on the evolution of the metropolitan century, supports leaders in more than 100 cities worldwide on strategy/positioning and advises global firms on the investment/enterprise opportunities of an urbanizing world. He is the author of 10 books and more than 100 reports, a City Expert on BBC World Service’s series My Perfect City and a monthly columnist for RICS, The Planet of Cities.

Dan Doctoroff

CEO, Sidewalk Labs

Dan Doctoroff is Chairman and CEO of Sidewalk Labs, a visionary project funded by Google parent company Alphabet to help make cities become more efficient, responsive, resilient and greener. Dan was President and Chief Executive Officer of Bloomberg L.P., the leading provider of news and information to the global financial community, until December 2014. Prior to joining Bloomberg L.P., Dan served as Deputy Mayor for Economic Development and Rebuilding for the City of New York with Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Dr Maria Mok

Museum Director of the Hong Kong Museum of Art

Joining the Hong Kong Museum of Art more than 24 years ago, Dr. Mok has extensive experience in museum work, heading different departments, including China Trade Paintings, Chinese Antiquities, Modern and Hong Kong Art, Education and Extension Services, and has curated and led a vast number of exhibitions and programs. Dr. Mok also has an extensive collection of published works with particular interest in the artistic interaction of global trade that includes Images of the Canton Factories 1760-1822: Reading History in Art (HKU Press: 2015) co-authored with Paul A. Van Dyke. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts Studies, a Master’s degree in Chinese Historical Studies on Guangdong decorative arts of the Qing dynasty, a Doctoral degree on China trade painting, and a graduate diploma in Museum Studies.

Charles Landry


Charles Landry is an international authority on the future of cities and the creative use of culture in urban revitalization. His book, The Creative City: A Toolkit for Urban Innovators, became a movement to rethink the planning, development and management of cities. He has chaired multiple urban innovation juries including The European Capital of Innovation Award – iCapital, New Innovations in the Creative Economy (N.I.C.E.) and Actors for Urban Change. He is a fellow of The Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin.

Saskia Sassen

Professor of Sociology, Columbia University

Saskia is the Lynd Professor of Sociology and Member, The Committee on Global Thought, Columbia University. She is a sociologist and economist noted for her analyses of globalization and international human migration. Saskia coined the term global city and has studied the impact of globalization on economic restructuring and how the movements of labor and capital influence urban life. She also studied the influence of communication technology on governance.

Fred Olayele

Chief Economist, New York City Economic Development Corporation

Fred Olayele’s diverse career spans banking, government, international development, management consulting and academia. As Chief Economist and Head of the Economic Research & Policy Group with New York City Economic Development Corporation, he oversees economic research and policy initiatives aimed at making New York City the global model for inclusive growth and innovation. He has consulted widely and advised many public and private organizations in Canada, United States, and Africa, including startups, multinational corporations, and international development agencies.

Dr. Henrietta Tsui-Leung

Founder & CEO of Galerie Ora-Ora Co-founder & President Emeritus of Hong Kong Art Gallery Association

A pioneer and unifier of the Hong Kong art gallery scene, Dr. Tsui-Leung co-founded the Hong Kong Art Gallery Association in 2012. She established Galerie Ora-Ora in 2006 and has successfully launched the international careers of many contemporary artists, building major exhibition opportunities at international museums and art fairs. Dr. Tsui-Leung has had a decisive impact on the evolution of contemporary ink art, bringing artists of diverse vision, concept and media to new audiences around the world. As a prolific female cultural entrepreneur, she plays an active role in the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation Hong Kong. She has been awarded with the Top 100 Chinese Women Entrepreneurs honor and Collector of the Year by Xinhuanet in China.

Laura Cha

Chairman, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd.

Laura is a non-official member of Hong Kong’s Executive Council, chairman of the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd, and an independent non-executive director of HSBC Holdings and Unilever. She was formerly Vice Chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, being the first person outside mainland China to join the Central Government of the People’s Republic of China at vice-ministerial rank. The Hong Kong Government has awarded her Gold and Silver Bauhinia Stars for public service.

Duncan Pescod

CEO, West Kowloon Cultural District

Duncan has overall responsibility for the Authority’s strategic direction and day-to-day operations, working with a strong team to deliver the visionary West Kowloon project. He first joined the Authority as Chief Operating Officer in October 2014 and serving more than three decades with the Hong Kong Government, in the former Home Affairs Branch, the former Security Branch, the Lands Department, the former Urban Services Department, the former City and New Territories Administration, the former Civil Service Branch/Bureau, the Tourism Commission, and the Efficiency Unit. He was Special Representative for Hong Kong Economic and Trade Affairs to the European Communities from 2006 to 2008 in Brussels, Permanent Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development (Communications and Technology) from 2008 to 2010, and Permanent Secretary for Transport and Housing (Housing) and Director of Housing from 2010 to 2014.

David Miller

Director, International Diplomacy, C40

David Miller is a leading voice in seeking out and promoting climate change solutions. His roles have included Mayor of Canada’s largest city, Chair of the influential C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, and President & CEO of World Wildlife Fund – Canada. He is currently the Director, International Diplomacy at the C40 Climate Leadership Group. C40 is the leading global network of cities committed to addressing climate change in order to improve the health of our people, our cities, and our planet. The organization connects more than 90 of the world’s greatest cities, representing more than 650 million people and one-quarter of the global economy.

Jeff Speck

Urban Planner

Jeff Speck is a city planner and urban designer who advocates internationally for more walkable cities. As director of design at the National Endowment for the Arts from 2003 through 2007, he presided over the Mayors’ Institute on City Design and created a new initiative, the Governors’ Institute on Community Design. Prior to his federal appointment, Mr. Speck spent 10 years as director of town planning at the leading new urbanist firm, DPZ & Co. Since 2007, he has led Speck & Associates LLC, a boutique planning firm that specializes in making American downtowns thrive. He is a co-author of Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream, and his book, Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time, was the best-selling planning/design book of 2013.

Valerie Steele

Chief Curator, The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology

Valerie Steele is director and chief curator of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she has personally organized more than 25 exhibitions since 1997. Steele combines serious scholarship (and a Yale Ph.D.) with a rare ability to communicate with general audiences. She is author or co-author of more than two dozen books, including Paris Fashion: A Cultural History, Women of Fashion, Fetish: Fashion, Sex and Power, and Fashion Designers A-Z: The Collection of The Museum at FIT.

Sam Chandan

Dean, NYU's Schack Institute of Real Estate

Sam Chandan, PhD is the Larry & Klara Silverstein Chair in Real Estate Development & Investment and dean of the NYU SPS Schack Institute of Real Estate; Adjunct Associate Professor of Real Estate at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; Founder of Chandan Economics; Economist Laureate of the Real Estate Lenders Association; and host of the Real Estate Hour on SiriusXM, airing in special editions.

Jeremy Salmon

Director, Broadway Malyan

Jeremy is a passionate design professional with more than 20 years architectural experience at Broadway Malyan. Starting his career in London, he was responsible for the Madrid studio for a number of years before relocating to China to manage the new Shanghai office in 2007. During his career Jeremy has worked across the globe on a great variety of project types and scales. He has a particular expertise in retail and mixed-use and led work on the Lefo Mall and SunArt Plaza, both in China. He has also worked on major master planning and landscaping projects such as Nanjing New Town, China and Las Cuatro Torres – Madrid’s new financial district. Most recently Jeremy is leading a growing UK-based team exploring global retail opportunities while also overseeing a number of major projects for Broadway Malyan’s international clients.

Parag Khanna

Founder & Managing Partner, FutureMap

Parag Khanna is a leading global strategy advisor, world traveler and best-selling author. He is Founder & Managing Partner of FutureMap, a data- and scenario-based strategic advisory firm. Parag’s newest book is The Future is Asian: Commerce, Conflict & Culture in the 21st Century (2019). Parag was named one of Esquire’s “75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century,” and featured in WIRED magazine’s “Smart List.” He holds a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics, and Bachelors and Masters degrees from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

Chris Boardman

Cycling and Walking Commissioner for Greater Manchester

Chris Boardman is a former British racing cyclist who won an individual pursuit gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics and broke the world hour record three times. As Cycling and Walking Commissioner for Greater Manchester, Chris is leading a 1.5 billion-pound, 10-year program to ensure the people who live, work and play in the City Region have a viable and attractive alternative to using cars.

Sumindi Peiris

Chief Marketing Officer, Time Out Group

Time Out Group is a global media and leisure business that inspires and enables people to explore and enjoy the best of the city. As Chief Marketing Officer for Time Out, Sumindi leads strategy and all marketing activity across the Group’s two business divisions, Time Out Media and Time Out Market.

Jonathan Bowles

Executive Director, Center for an Urban Future

Jonathan Bowles is the Executive Director of the Center for an Urban Future, a Manhattan-based think tank dedicated to independent research about key policy issues facing New York and other cities. During his 12 years at the Center, he has been the architect of the policy agenda for the Center and is responsible for making it one of New York’s most innovative and influential organizations and one in which its policy ideas are well-respected and widely used by policymakers, business leaders and nonprofit practitioners.

James Patchett

President and CEO of New York City Economic Development Corporation

James Patchett has spent his career building stronger cities through investments in affordable housing, innovation, and 21st century infrastructure. In his current role overseeing job growth and economic development for the City of New York, James taps into his deep experience in real estate, finance, government and urban planning. During his tenure, he has overseen some of the city’s most ambitious projects, including launching a citywide ferry system, developing Mayor de Blasio’s 100,000 jobs plan, and optimizing NYCEDC’s 60 million square feet of real estate.

Tim Kobe

Founder & CEO, Eight Inc.

Tim Kobe is a design leader, author and founder of the globally recognized strategic and experience design firm Eight Inc. For over 30 years in design and a leader in Innovation and Branded Experience, Eight Inc. has worked with companies such as Apple, Virgin Atlantic Airways, Nike, Coke, Knoll and Citibank. His 11 studios and 200+ strategic designers and business creatives connect across 7 time zones and 3 continents. Kobe is a frequent keynote speaker on topics surrounding design, innovation, technology and business valuation. He has been featured and recognized for his work in prominent publications like Harvard Business Review, Bloomberg, The Economist, Dezeen and Fast Company. His upcoming book, Return on Experience, published by ORO Editions will be released in 2020.

Chris Fair

President, Resonance & Founder, BestCities.org

Chris holds a Masters degree in Studies of the Future and has married his tourism, real estate and economic development expertise with futures methodologies to help a wide variety of clients envision and create development strategies, plans and brands that shape the future of places around the world. As President of Resonance Consultancy, Chris leads a team that has completed more than 100 visioning, strategy, planning, and branding projects for developers and destinations in more than 70 countries. He is also the founder of BestCities.org, a ranking that analyzes and measures cities based on a unique benchmarking model that blends core statistics with millions of consumer ratings and reviews. The result is a measure of relative “place equity”—attractiveness for talent, investment and tourism—for cities around the world.

Kiri Sinclair

Founder & CEO, Sinclair Communications

A highly regarded thought leader and regular commentator for the PR and communications industry in Asia, Kiri is Founder and CEO of integrated communications agency Sinclair, board member of both The Marketing Society and PRHK, Hong Kong’s public relations association, and a member of the PRCA Global Ethics Council. She is a strong advocate for the value of PR-led integrated communications in greater China and across the APAC region. In 2020 Sinclair was awarded Public Relations Agency of the Year 2020 by Marketing Magazine and Greater China PR Consultancy of the Year 2018 by Campaign Asia.

Richard Florida

Author, Thought-Leader & Urbanist

Richard Florida is one of the world’s leading urbanists. He is a researcher and professor, serving as University Professor at University of Toronto’s School of Cities and Rotman School of Management, and a Distinguished Fellow at NYU’s Schack School of Real Estate. He is a writer and journalist, having penned several global best sellers, including the award-winning The Rise of the Creative Class and his most recent book, The New Urban Crisis. He is co-founder of CityLab, the leading publication devoted to cities and urbanism.

Joe Pine

Co-Founder, Strategic Horizons LLP

B. Joseph Pine II is an internationally acclaimed author, speaker, and management advisor to Fortune 500 companies and entrepreneurial startups alike. He is co-founder of Strategic Horizons LLP, a thinking studio dedicated to helping businesses conceive and design new ways of adding value to their economic offerings. In 2020 Mr. Pine and his partner James H. Gilmore re-released in hardcover The Experience Economy: Competing for Customer Time, Attention, and Money featuring an all-new Preview to their best-selling 1999 book The Experience Economy: Work Is Theatre & Every Business a Stage. The book demonstrates how goods and services are no longer enough; what companies must offer today are experiences—memorable events that engage each customer in an inherently personal way. It further shows that in today’s Experience Economy companies now compete against the world for the time, attention, and money of individual customers.

Shin-pei Tsay

Director of Policy for Cities and Transportation, Uber

Shin-pei Tsay is Director of Policy for Cities and Transportation in Uber’s Central Policy team. Shin-pei comes from a diverse background, with a focus on transforming the built environment so that it is more accessible, equitable, and sustainable around the globe. In her current role at Uber, she leads a team of issues experts that contribute to creating a sustainable, multi-modal urban future. Prior to joining Uber’s team, she founded Make Public, a social impact analysis firm that specializes in the public realm. Shin-pei was also the deputy executive director of TransitCenter, a national foundation focused on improving urban transportation.

Charles Montgomery

Founding Principal, Happy City

Charles Montgomery is an award-winning author, urbanist and leader of transformative experiments, research and interventions for wellbeing in cities. His acclaimed book, Happy City, Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design, examines the intersection between urban design and the emerging science of happiness. Collaborating with partners ranging from the Guggenheim Museum to local governments around the world, Charles and his team have created experiments and design methods that help participants nurture happy, healthy and inclusive cities.

Clement Kwok

Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, Limited

Clement Kwok, Chevalier de la Légion ďHonneur, was appointed Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of HSH in 2002. Previously, he was involved in the privatization of MTR as the group’s finance Director. He is currently an Honorary Advisor of the Financial Reporting Council, a Fellow of The Hong Kong Management Association, a Council Member of the World Travel & Tourism Council, and a Member of the International Advisory Council of the Faculty of Business and Economics of The University of Hong Kong. Over his long career in Hong Kong, he has served on the Stock Exchange Listing Committee, the Takeovers and Mergers Panel, the Securities and Futures Appeals Tribunal, the Hang Seng Index Advisory Committee and the Harbourfront Commission, as well as the Interpretations Committee of the International Accounting Standards Board in London. In January 2015, the French Government bestowed the distinction of Chevalier de l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur on Mr Kwok.

Bjarke Ingels

Founder, BIG

Bjarke Ingels founded BIG—Bjarke Ingels Group—in 2005 after co-founding PLOT Architects in 2001 and working at OMA in Rotterdam. Bjarke defines architecture as the art and science of making sure our cities and buildings fit with the way we want to live our lives. Through careful analysis of various parameters from local culture and climate, ever-changing patterns of contemporary life, to the ebbs and flows of the global economy, Bjarke believes in the idea of information driven-design as the driving force for his design process. Named one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by TIME Magazine in 2016, Bjarke has designed and completed award-winning buildings globally.

Jacob Kam

CEO, MTR Corporation Ltd.

As the CEO, Dr Kam is responsible for all performances of the Company and its group companies both in and outside Hong Kong. He is also the chairman of the Regional and Suburban Railways Division of the International Association of Public Transport (UITP), a member of Hong Kong Quality Assurance Agency Governing Council, a member of the board of directors of The Community Chest of Hong Kong, a member of the General Committee of The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, and a council member of The Hong Kong Management Association.

Jennifer Keesmaat

CEO, The Keesmaat Group & former Toronto Chief City Planner

Jennifer Keesmat is passionate about creating places where people flourish, and was named one of the “most powerful people in Canada” by Maclean’s, one of the “most influential” by Toronto Life, and one of the top Women of Influence in Canada. In 2018, Jennifer founded The Keesmaat Group, a creative group of senior-level urbanists who work with future-oriented cities, regions, companies and organizations to advance solutions to some of the most pressing challenges of our time: a global housing affordability crisis, the need for mobility in our cities that forgoes dependence on fossil fuels, and smarter, quicker adaptations to a changing climate.

Jan Gehl

Founder, Gehl Architects

Jan Gehl is an architect, professor and consultant on urban design who has focused his career on improving the quality of urban life by reorienting the design of the city towards the people in the cities: public life, pedestrians, and cyclists. His books include the by-now classics Life Between Buildings and Cities for People (the latter has been published in more than 40 languages). Major City improvement projects with Gehl Architects include Copenhagen, Melbourne, Sydney, London, New York and Moscow.

Diego Fernandez

Secretary of Social & Urban Integration, City of Buenos Aires

Diego is passionate about transformations. He graduated from the Argentine Business University (UADE) with a degree in Business Administration & Accounting and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Systemic Innovation Management at the Buenos Aires Technological Institute (ITBA). In 2009 he co-created G25, a non-profit organization to bridge the gap between the public and private sectors. In 2010 Diego joined the Buenos Aires City Ministry of Education and since 2015 he oversees a highly ambitious project: integrating Barrio 31, one of the most well-known informal settlements in Buenos Aires, into the social and urban fabric of the city.

Dr. Edmund Lee

Executive Director, Hong Kong Design Center

Edmund has led the design public mission for 10 years, promoting good design and wider adoption of design thinking for people-centric innovation. He is a Companion of Chartered Management Institute and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce. Edmund serves on the boards and advisory committees of PMQ, Harbourfront Commission, Urban Renewal Authority and Hong Kong Trade Development Council. Apart from a PhD and MBA, he has acquired a broad base of knowledge in design (eg. RCA, ID IIT, TUDelft), Beyond Smart Cities: Emerging Design & Technology (MIT Media Lab), Blockchain Strategy (Oxford Saïd Business School) and Non-Profit Management (Harvard Business School).

Olga Stella

Executive Director, Design Core Detroit

Olga Stella leads Design Core Detroit, an organization that works to position Detroit as a global source of creative talent by supporting the growth of Detroit’s design-driven businesses and their market opportunities In this role, she is applying her experience in economic development, public policy and coalition-building to Design Core’s work which ranges from business education, advocacy, storytelling, and activating Detroit’s designation as the only UNESCO City of Design in the United States. Olga helped facilitate over $200 million in investment in the city of Detroit through her work at the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, where she played multiple roles, including Chief Operating Officer. Her political experience includes serving as an Assistant to the Mayor for Economic Development to Mayor Dennis Archer, and as Chief of Staff to former State Representative Steve Tobocman.

Dr. Au King-lun

Executive Director, Financial Services Development Council

Dr Au, Executive Director of Financial Services Development Council, was named CEO of the Year in Hong Kong by Asia Asset Management in 2012 and 2014. He was awarded the Medal of Honor by the HKSAR Government in 2008 for his valuable contributions to the securities and asset management industry. He was also the Chairman of the Hong Kong Securities and Investment Institute (HKSI) from 2006 to 2008 and the Chairman of the Hong Kong Investment Funds Association in 2004/2005. He is currently serving as a Council member of the Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Public Accountants and an Index Advisory Committee member of China Securities Index Co., among other public services.

Thomas Ermacora

City Futurist

Thomas Ermacora is a city futurist and impact investor working to leverage the tools of the fourth industrial revolution and novel urban strategies to solve some of humanity’s most pressing problems with a focus on climate adaptation and community wellbeing. He has pioneered a number of impact projects and experiments looking to redefine the way cities and neighborhoods self-organize through participatory processes. He is also the author of Recoded City: Co-Creating Urban Futures. Ermacora has consulted and worked with and advised a wide range of cities and organizations including the G7 on AI, the Xprize, the Clinton Global Initiative (helping launch Cities Rise for urban mental health), the World Economic Forum where he sits in the future of human rights council, the European Commission on Blockchain for Good, and the L.A. Cleantech Incubator.

Valerie Wong

General Manager, Asset Management at GuocoLand Singapore

Valerie has more than 20 years of experience in asset management, most recently in the leasing and marketing of GuocoLand’s investment commercial properties, 20 Collyer Quay and Guoco Tower. She is currently deeply involved in the product development as well as the leasing and communications strategy for Guoco Midtown, GuocoLand’s new flagship integrated mixed-use development in the Bugis-Beach Road precinct. Prior to joining GuocoLand in 2014, Valerie was Senior Vice President at Pontiac Land Group (PLG), where she managed a comprehensive portfolio of Grade A projects, spanning from office and medical towers, luxury residential investment and development properties.

Micah Kotch

Managing Director, URBAN-X by MINI

Micah Kotch serves as Managing Director of URBAN-X by MINI and Urban Us. Before joining URBAN-X, Micah served as Director of NY Prize, and Strategic Advisor for Innovation at NYSERDA. At the NYU Tandon School of Engineering Micah served as Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, where he launched NYC’s first sponsored tech incubator and the Urban Future Lab, helping startups address mobility, climate, energy and resiliency opportunities. He is a core national faculty member for the National Science Foundation’s i-CORPS program which commercializes federally funded research. A Brooklyn native, he is a proud board member for Green City Force, an AmeriCorps program that engages young adults from low-income communities in national service.

Chintan Raveshia

Arup Cities Leader, Singapore

Chintan is a trained architect and urban designer and leads the City Design team in Arup Singapore. With over 16 years experience masterplanning precincts and mixed-use developments, strategizing smart cities, regenerating urban landscapes, and designing transit-oriented developments, Chintan has worked on some of the most iconic projects globally. His journey has brought him to Singapore where he helped to develop a vision for Singapore’s Smart Urban Habitat Masterplan, paving the future for the next generation of public housing in Singapore. He is currently working on planning for Indonesia’s New capital city, active mobility, TOD and tourism-focused masterplan and development projects in South East Asia including Singapore.

Ophelia Yeung

Senior Research Fellow, Global Wellness Institute

Ophelia Yeung has more than 20 years of experience leading research and consulting assignments for business, government, universities and nonprofit organizations around the world. Her recent work has focused on the wellness industry. Under the auspices of the Global Wellness Institute, Ms. Yeung has created new frameworks for defining the size and scope of the global wellness industry and its many sectors. She co-authored numerous Global Wellness Institute studies, including “Future of Wellness at Work 2016,” “Build Well to Live Well 2018,” “Global Wellness Economy Monitor 2018,” and “Move to be Well: The Global Economy of Physical Activity 2019.”

Andre Brumfield

Principal, Global Leader | Cities + Urban Design, Gensler

As Principal and Global Director of Cities + Urban Design in Gensler’s Chicago office, Andre is focused on and committed to revitalizing and repositioning urban environments to shape equitable, accessible communities through urban design, master planning and architecture. His extensive experience ranges from city-wide master planning and high-density, urban-infill to emerging urban district redevelopment, mixed income housing, and neighborhood and community revitalization. Andre’s visionary, yet realistic revitalization plans have been successfully implemented in economically challenged areas throughout the world.

Sadhu Johnston

City Manager, Vancouver

Sadhu is responsible for management of the City, supports Council in making Vancouver an even more vibrant and sustainable community, and oversees the over one billion dollar annual budget and over 7,000 employees. Prior to serving in this role, Sadhu served for seven years as the deputy city manager, where he helped to oversee the development and implementation of Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Plan. Sadhu is a founder and was co-chair (2009-2015) of the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), a network of over 120 municipal staff focused on greening their cities, representing over 50 million urban dwellers in North America. Prior to moving to Vancouver, Sadhu served as Mayor Richard M. Daley’s chief environmental officer where he was responsible for the oversight of City of Chicago environmental initiatives.

Benjamin Cowling

Professor & Division Head, Hong Kong University

Professor Cowling is the head of the Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the School of Public Health at the University of Hong Kong, and co-Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Control. He is Editor-in-Chief of Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses, and an Associate Editor of the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Noraliza Hashim

Chief Executive of Urbanice Malaysia

Norliza Hashim is the Chief Executive of Urbanice Malaysia, a Centre of Excellence for Urban Well-being and Sustainability of Malaysia, under the Ministry of Housing and Local Government Malaysia. A registered town planner, her works include providing services to more than 12 nations and she has also served as a consultant to UN-Habitat in its Urban and Housing Rehabilitation Programmes.

Tony Moore

Executive Director, Gathering Place

As a hospitality park executive with more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment industry, Tony has served in a leadership capacity for some of the most respected entertainment brands, including Universal Studios, SeaWorld Parks and Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. Tony is now serving as the Executive Director for Gathering Place, a one-of-a-kind, world-class, $465-million urban park located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Since opening in September, 2018. Gathering Place has been named USA Today’s “Best New Attraction of 2019,” Time Magazine’s “World’s Greatest Places to Visit” and has been honored with the Urban Land Institute’s “Global Award for Excellence.” Tony’s goal for the park is that it continues to grow as an inclusive space that unites all Tulsans regardless of age, culture or socio-economics. A place that not only engages, educates and excites; but likewise a place that helps to make Tulsa a more vibrant place to live, work and play.

Yael Froman-Ideses

Director of Tourism, Tel Aviv Global & Tourism

Tel Aviv Global & Tourism is a municipal company managed directly under the Office of the Mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo. Its primary efforts are directed toward making the city more accessible to the world and facilitating its quantum leap in the global arena, achieved in cooperation with municipal, national and private partners. Yael Froman-Ideses manages the Tourism department, which is responsible for: managing Tel Aviv’s International Convention Bureau; hotel development; initiate, establish and operate new tourist attractions; operate TIC and tours around the city; tourism experience; community tourism; etc.

Rafi Museli

CEO Selina

Rafael Museri, co-founder & CEO of Selina, a nomadic lifestyle brand that accommodates the needs of a new generation of travelers and digital nomads. Following his 12 years of military service in one of Israel’s most elite army units, Rafi joined his business partner, Daniel Rudasevski, to launch Dekel, their Panama-based development company where they immersed themselves in cultural- and community-building for over a decade, redeveloping struggling neighborhoods into vibrant communities. Based on key learnings from their work with Dekel, they launched Selina and have carried forward the concept of converting distressed assets into community-based and economically viable hospitality properties. Over the past five years, Selina has expanded to 80+ properties in 20 countries and has recently raised $100 million in a Series C financing round, bringing the company’s total funding to $225 million to date.

Sarah Ichioka

Founding Director of Desire Lines

Sarah Ichioka is an urbanist, curator and writer. She currently leads Desire Lines, a strategic consultancy for environmental, cultural, and social-impact organizations and initiatives. In previous roles, she has explored the intersections of cities, society and ecology within leading international institutions of culture, policy and research. Sarah’s outlook is glocal, interdisciplinary and future-facing. She has been recognized as a World Cities Summit Young Leader, one of the Global Public Interest Design 100, a British Council / Clore Duffield Cultural Leadership International Fellow, and an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Steven Pedigo

University of Texas LBJ Urban Lab Director

Steven Pedigo is an expert in economic and urban development, city strategy and management, and placemaking. Steven has advised and collaborated with more than 50 cities, universities, developers, nonprofits, and Fortune 500 companies across the globe to build more creative, innovative, and inclusive communities. Steven is a professor of practice at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin and the director of the LBJ Urban Lab. He is also the director of research and advising for the Creative Class Group, in addition to being the vice president for strategy at Resonance Consultancy and a senior advisor for Bridge Economic Development.

Signe Jungersted

CEO and Founding Partner of Group NAO

Signe is CEO and Founding Partner of Group NAO, an international innovation company that charges ideas and strategies to transform urban communities and economies with tourism and the broader visitor economy as a key resource. Signe has been at the forefront of Copenhagen’s transformation in approaching tourism development as former Director of Development with Wonderful Copenhagen. She was lead designer and author of the destination’s 2020-strategy, which declared the end of tourism and set a new course towards people-based growth and localhood for everyone. Signe has led innovative initiatives charging the Chinese market, co-creating visitor experiences with cultural institutions, partnering with startups and taking a deep dive into locals’ perception of tourism.

Amahl Hazelton

Head of Strategy & Innovation – Cities, Moment Factory

Amahl Hazelton joined Moment Factory in 2009, and now heads Strategy and Development for the multimedia studio’s ‘Cities’ division. A graduate of McGill University’s School of Urban Planning with a specialization in Place Branding & Competitive Identity, Amahl has led the development of groundbreaking media architecture installations that celebrate local, regional and national identity from LAX and Changi airports, to iconic civil infrastructure such as the Interactive Illumination of Montreal’s monumental Jacques Cartier Bridge, which earned the Smart Cities Grand Prize at SXSW 2018.

Martha Collard

Founder, Catalyst for Emotional Wellbeing

After 30 years as an independent management consultant Martha founded Red Doors Studio with little more than a passion to bring transformative tools to the public and a belief that the world would be a better place if everyone had a good rest. Since then the studio has grown into a center of excellence for quality product, performance, and training. She was founding Chairman of the Yoga Society of Hong Kong, founded Namaskar magazine and is currently the Asia Representative of The Labyrinth Society.

Laurent Queige

Managing Director, Welcome City Lab

Laurent was chief of staff to the Deputy Mayor of Paris in charge of tourism from 2001 to 2013. Created by Paris&Co with the support of the City of Paris, Welcome City Lab is a program to stimulate innovation in the tourist sector, including the world’s first incubator dedicated to this sector. As Managing Director, Laurent’s objective is to position Paris as a leading destination in terms of innovation in tourism.

James Rayner

Director, Broadway Malyan

With more than 20 years of worldwide experience in the design and urban-planning of complex developments, James leads Broadway Malyan’s Urbanism & Master Planning team. A chartered urban planner and landscape designer, James’ passion and knowledge lay in developing successful urban planning and urban design strategies and concepts for major projects, with a particular emphasis on the delivery of long-lasting value, and sustainable, liveable and integrated cities and communities. James has led award-winning projects, such as North Yas New Town in Abu Dhabi, East Village in Calgary, Canada, and Luanda City, Angola, a strategic, forward-thinking comprehensive city plan for Africa’s fourth largest city.

Lucinda Hartley

Co-Founder, Neighbourlytics

Urban designer-turned-entrepreneur, Lucinda Hartley uses big data to measure the quality of life and wellbeing of neighborhoods. She is a co-founder of Neighbourlytics, a social analytics platform which has created data for more than 500 neighbourhoods in over 10 countries and is influencing some of the world’s most significant urban development decisions. Lucinda was recently named as one of 100 Women of Influence by the Australian Financial Review and one of Melbourne’s Top 100 most influential people by The Age.

Adrian Ellis

Founder, AEA Consulting & Chair, Global Cultural Districts Network

Adrian is the founder of AEA Consulting (1990) and has worked in senior management and as a board member in both museums and the performing arts, and as a strategy consultant to leading clients in the cultural, public, and business sectors around the world. A life-long jazz fanatic, Adrian served as Executive Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center from 2007 to 2012. He writes extensively on cultural policy and strategy and is the Chair of the Global Cultural Districts Network (gcdn.net)

Richard Cutting-Miller

Executive Vice-President, Resonance

A 25-year travel industry veteran, Richard was Executive Vice President for the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and played a principal role in shaping and directing the organization, policy agenda, research program, communications and membership services for the organization. During his 16-year tenure with WTTC, Richard traveled worldwide, consulting and speaking on the topic of travel and tourism economics, policy and advocacy, and produced more than 100 strategy and policy projects for regions such as the Caribbean, the Mercosur and APEC, and countries as diverse as China, Montenegro, Qatar, Indonesia, Australia, Thailand, Namibia and South Africa. As Executive Vice-President at Resonance, he has led complex tourism consulting projects including master plans for the cities such as Los Angeles, Vancouver, Portland and many others.

Chris Bruntlett

Marketing and Communication Manager, Dutch Cycling Embassy

Chris Bruntlett is Marketing and Communication Manager at the Dutch Cycling Embassy, a public-private partnership that represents the best knowledge, experience and experts from the Netherlands. As a long-time campaigner in Vancouver, he fell in love with Dutch bike culture in 2016, inspiring him to co-author the book, Building the Cycling City: The Dutch Blueprint for Urban Vitality. Chris uses his knowledge and passion to share practical lessons for global cities wishing to follow their footsteps, and become better places to live, work, and—of course—cycle.

Melissa Bruntlett

International Communications Specialist, Mobycon

Melissa Bruntlett is the International Communications Specialist at Mobycon, a Dutch-North American Consultancy. She is also the co-author of Building the Cycling City: The Dutch Blueprint for Urban Vitality. Melissa focuses on urban mobility and sustainable cities, and believes it is imperative to build cities that work for every citizen, using her experience as a writer, marketer, and media producer to share the human perspective of multi-modal transport to a mainstream audience.

Andrew King

Chief Design Officer, Lemay

Andrew King is Chief Design Officer at Lemay and co-leads LemayLab, the firm’s research and innovation incubator. A Fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and Professor in Practice at the Peter Guo-hua Fu School of Architecture at McGill University, he is a recognized leader in Canadian design practice and education. Responsible for the firm’s design leadership and relevant national strategic initiatives, he has evolved a critically recognized practice model that converges speculative small practice, large firm design leadership and academic research.

Stephen Smyth


Stephen is Coord’s co-founder and CEO. An engineer by training, Stephen has more than 15 years experience at early-stage and established companies such as Prosper, Amplify and Reuters. He started his career in mobility at BMW in Munich, writing software for crash and robotics simulations. When not at work, he enjoys taking his bike for a spin in Central Park and exploring New York City with his kids.

Dionne Griffith

Consultant, Group of Humans

Dionne is a business development, marketing and communications specialist based in London. Over the past 25 years she has worked with some of the most respected names in international architecture, design, technology and contemporary art including United Visual Artists, Adjaye Associates, IDEO, Pentagram and Wolff Olins. Her roles have varied from strategic marketing and PR consultancy and implementation to client relationship development. She has also acted as a curator, editor and commissioner of content for books, special projects, exhibitions and workshops. Dionne has a Masters from the University of London Institute of Paris and a BA in English Literature and History of Art from the University of Leeds.

Peter Hyland

Regional Director, Cistri

Peter Hyland is one of the Asia-Pacific’s most respected urban land-use strategists. He has led large multidisciplinary teams on projects including inner city renewal and new city developments, major port and airport master plans, and resort and shopping center developments. Peter’s experience spans Australia, the Asia-Pacific, Europe and the Middle East. He is passionate about helping cities and projects achieve great economic outcomes to underpin the development of vibrant and successful places that benefit developers, users and residents. His ability to marry economic and planning considerations has made him a trusted advisor to major Australian private and public companies and all levels of government.

Scott Erickson

VP Marketing Strategy, Resonance

A global marketing leader, Scott has worked across startup and established organizations to craft marketing and brand initiatives that drive awareness, engagement and advocacy. Scott was a Partner and General Manager at Microsoft where he launched the world’s first holographic computer, reimagined the future of entertainment on Xbox and created worldwide advertising for Nokia. As Vice President, Marketing Strategy, at Resonance, Scott leads the destination marketing practice and works alongside DMOs, economic development and regional marketing teams to craft integrated and sustainable promotion strategies.

Jake Haupert

Co-Founder & Chairman of Board, Transformational Travel Council

Jake is a thought leader shaping and shepherding transformational travel and the emerging transformation economy into mainstream tourism and the global marketplace. Transformational travel has the power to incite change by breaking down walls within us and between us. Jake is on a mission to transform travelers, tourism, and humanity and invites you to join him. With the power of one, in the power of choice and how that will bring forth a more conscious way of being, heal the biosphere, and evolve our shared civilization. He’s been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Forbes, NPR, Skift, Shape, Vox.com, USAToday, and Seattle Met among other trade and consumer publications and podcasts.

Christopher Darnell

Chief Executive Officer, Former Microsoft Cloud & XBox

Christopher is a global executive with significant board of director experience across four continents. He has developed, executed and led entrepreneurial initiatives for startups and high-growth businesses, from within large corporations to newly founded companies. Industries include energy, media and entertainment, real estate and technology. He has overseen the investment of more than US $1.5 billion in emerging markets, start-up and high-growth businesses. He started his career at Southern Company in finance, where he worked for 10 years. Later, he worked for Microsoft also for 10 years, where he was on the leadership teams that launched Microsoft Cloud and Xbox’s entertainment platform, among others. Following Microsoft, he founded his own start-up, which he exited in 2017. Building new businesses from the ground up is his lifelong passion, from being a DJ in his youth to the path that led him to his current role at The Human Baton.

Mirik Milan

Former Night Mayor of Amsterdam

Since 2012, Mirik has played an instrumental role in the reshaping of Amsterdam’s nightlife scene into one of the most vibrant and economically robust in the world. In 2018 and 2019, Mirik gave more than 25 international talks to city governments and planners, advising them on how to better deal with their Night Time Economy. In 2018 he became a partner in The Creative Footprint—a global civic initiative that measures and indexes creative space.

Yun Hye Hwang

Associate Professor at National University of Singapore

Yun Hye Hwang is an Associate Professor, an accredited landscape architect, and a landscape researcher with expertise in socio-ecological design and management strategies of urban green spaces that respond to emerging demands of high-density cities. She focuses on transferring knowledge of urban ecology from academia to practice through active interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary collaborations. Her works and research have been recognized by publishing in multiple journals and international awards.

Adam Burke

President & CEO, Los Angeles Tourism

A seasoned travel and tourism executive with more than 25 years of industry experience, Adam joined Los Angeles Tourism as Chief Operating Officer in 2016. He was named President & CEO in July 2020. Prior to Los Angeles Tourism, Burke served as Senior Vice President of Customer Loyalty for Hilton Worldwide with global management responsibility for the award-winning Honors customer loyalty program. At Hilton, he also oversaw a network of more than 90 strategic partnerships in the travel, financial services and retail sectors. During his 17-year tenure with Hilton, he held management positions in a variety of functional areas including strategic planning, international marketing, leisure & multi-brand marketing, sales integration, business development, CRM and enterprise technology.

Lee Jia Ping

Founder, Tempatico

Jia Ping heads an urban and culture change startup called Tempatico which looks into the regeneration of urban, corporate and cultural places. She is actively driving the placemaking agenda in ASEAN and is a startup Board member of Placemakingx, a global network of leaders who together accelerate placemaking as a way to create healthy, inclusive, and beloved communities.

Scott Beck

President & CEO, Tourism Toronto

Scott Beck is the President & CEO of Tourism Toronto. Prior to joining Destination Toronto, Scott was the President/CEO of Visit Salt Lake. A proven leader in the destination sales and marketing industry, Beck served on the Executive Committee of Destinations International for six years and served as the organization’s International Board Chair from 2014 – 2015. He also served on the Foundation Board of the Green Meetings Industry Council. True to his roots, Scott is still an active skier, biker and outdoor enthusiast.

Tita Larasati

Chairman of Bandung Creative City Forum (BCCF), Deputy of Strategic Partnership of Indonesia Creative Cities Network (ICCN)

Tita Larasati co-founded—and currently chairs—Bandung Creative City Forum (BCCF), a hub organization for creative communities in Bandung, that has been creating prototypes of urban solutions by applying the methods of design thinking and urban acupuncture.

Kate Thompson

President & CEO, Calgary Municipal Land Corporation

Kate joined CMLC in January 2013 to lead the delivery of the master plan vision for the revitalization of East Village in downtown Calgary. In January 2020, after seven years as Vice President of Development, Kate stepped into her new role as President & CEO. Today, under Kate’s leadership, CMLC is overseeing the development of the BMO Convention Centre Expansion, Event Centre, and critical infrastructure projects in east Victoria Park, delivering on the vision for Calgary’s Culture & Entertainment District.
Kate’s exceptional leadership and foresight have been instrumental in the success of many of Calgary’s major infrastructure and development projects over the past six years, including the city’s new Central Library, selected as one of the world’s Greatest Places in 2019 by TIME magazine.

Hamdan Abdul Majeed

Managing Director, Think City

Hamdan Abdul Majeed is Managing Director of Think City, an urban regeneration outfit providing policy thinking, implementation, and urban solutions for Malaysian cities. Principally funded by Yayasan Hasanah, a foundation of Khazanah Nasional, Think City is focused on rejuvenating the historical cores of George Town, Butterworth, Kuala Lumpur, and Johor Bahru.

Dori Nguyen

Managing Partner, Utopia

Dori Nguyen is Managing Partner of Utopia, an urban innovation group for emerging cities. She drives and co-curates strategy, process and innovation alongside local and global teams in Kathmandu and across Asia. She draws on her anthropological, planning and design experience to intentionally and steadily work towards vibrant, inclusive and equitable cities.

Andrew Carter

Chief Executive, Centre for Cities

Andrew became Chief Executive of the Centre in April 2017. Before that he was the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Policy and Research with overall responsibility for the Centre’s research and policy program. Andrew has 20+ years of experience working on urban economic policy issues for public and private development agencies, consultants and research institutes. He has also spent time in the U.S. as part of the Churchill Foundation’s Fellowship Program, reviewing urban economic development policy and practice in American cities including New York, Washington, D.C., Boston and Chicago. He is a regular media contributor and chairs and speaks at conferences across the U.K. and Europe on a wide range of urban and economic issues.

Tulsi Grover

Studio Leader at Hassell

Tulsi focuses his interior design specialization on lifestyle-driven projects; hospitality, F&B, and premium residential properties spanning Asia, Africa and Australia. Based in Singapore, he contributes to business strategy and design direction within Hassell and leads the design, strategic planning and client relationships, overseeing prominent projects across the region. His interest lies in evidence-based design and its merger with technology, innovation and passive design strategies to create experientially empowered projects.

Jonathan Smith

Associate Partner, Lake|Flato

Jonathan Smith joined Lake|Flato in 2005 with a background in large scale, mixed-use developments and multifamily residential projects. He has managed projects of varying scales, from the 1221 Broadway mixed-use development in San Antonio, TX, to an adobe bunkhouse in Marfa, TX. An active member in the local community, Jonathan was a founding board member of the ACE Mentor Program of Greater San Antonio and was the AIA San Antonio President in 2011. His projects include the mixed-use development St. Vincent in Austin, Sylvan|Thirty in Dallas, TX, and the new Austin Central Library.

Maria Warner Wong

Design Director & Co-Founder of WOW Architects / Warner Wong Design

Maria Warner Wong is a Singapore-based architect, interior and landscape designer, and is the co-founder of WOW Architects and Warner Wong Design. WOW is a Singapore-based multidisciplinary architecture, interior and landscape design studio with projects in Asia, the Middle East and East Africa. Maria leads a team of design professionals dedicated to creating spaces of extraordinary sensory experience rooted in cultural memory and place.

Stephen Luk

Regional Vice President, Design Services, Hyatt Hotels ASPAC

Stephen leads Hyatt Hotels’ Greater China Design Services team to support the ever-expanding Hyatt development in the region. His Design Services team is responsible for guiding the design, planning and direction across each of the 19 brands. Stephen has been focusing on Greater China’s hospitality design development since 2011. He has also spent 13 years practicing in both Hospitality Architecture and Interior Design in New York City. He obtained his Masters degree from Columbia University in New York and Bachelor degree from the University of Melbourne.

Hans Schwarz

Co-director and partner at Taller ACÁ ­– Architecture, City & Activism

Hans Schwarz Bassila is a Guatemalan architect with a Masters degree in collective housing. His interests expand from housing and the public realm to new models of participation and construction of citizenship through architecture.

Jorge Villatoro

Co-Director and Partner at Taller ACÁ ­– Architecture, City & Activism

Jorge Villatoro is a Guatemalan architect with experience in projects with focus in urban, social and cultural development. He has contributed in both public and private sector as well as a researcher for urban studies.

Darin Bresnitz

Co-Author of Snacky Tunes: Music is the Main Ingredient: Chefs and Their Music

Since 2001, Darin Bresnitz has worked in culinary media, focusing on the people in the industry, their stories and the incredible food and drinks they provide. He has developed and directed numerous cooking shows, like IFC’s “Dinner With The Band,” always striving to create a fresh approach to the format. In 2016, he joined Tastemade, where he currently works as the Director of Original Series, creating series like Cooking with Pride and In The Shadow Of. Since 2009, he has co-hosted and co-produced Heritage Radio Network’s “Snacky” Tunes, interviewing over a thousand chefs, restaurateurs, bartenders, musicians, artists and other culinary cohorts. He lives in L.A. with his family.

Greg Bresnitz

Co-Author of Snacky Tunes: Music is the Main Ingredient: Chefs and Their Music

After producing IFC’s “Dinner With The Band,” Greg began a career in hospitality. Working for international brands such as Ace Hotel and Selina, Greg built award-winning cultural programs and launched performance venues, as well as led business development and property conceptualization. For more than a decade, Greg has also collaborated with his twin brother Darin and best friend Khoung to host and produce Heritage Radio Network’s “Snacky Tunes.” Together, they have interviewed 1,000+ chefs, restaurateurs, bartenders, musicians, artists, and other culinary leaders. Greg lives in New York with his family.

Jeremy James Berry

CEO of Global Perspective Speakers & Events

Jeremy leads Global Perspective Speakers & Events, an international public speakers bureau and event management firm. He is also co-founder of SpkerBox Media Inc., a podcast production company and network focusing on amplifying the voices of the world’s most influential thinkers.

Andrew Hoyne

Principal, Hoyne

Andrew is the Principal of place brand and property marketing agency Hoyne. Over the last decade Hoyne have evolved to a core focus on place and property, and today they work with major international asset owners, developers and local councils to create recognisable landmarks and destinations; from residential towers and master planned communities to commercial developments, new mixed-use precincts, and even cities. Andrew’s passion for the power of place has led him to produce The Place Economy, a series of resource books on the social and economic benefits of effective placemaking from around the world.

Peter Nowak

Journalist and Author, The Rise of Real-Life Superheroes: and the Fall of Everything Else

Peter Nowak is a best-selling author and award-winning journalist. His work has appeared in The Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Boston Globe and Sydney Morning Herald, and he is a former staff reporter for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, National Post and New Zealand Herald. He is an avid traveler and an accomplished speaker. He lives in Toronto with his wife, two cats and dog.

Rock N Roll

Superhero and Founder of the Superheroines Initiative and Heroes 101 Radio

Rock N Roll is an author, musician, certified medical technician and founder of the Superheroines Initiative and Heroes 101 Radio. A survivor of domestic violence, Rock N Roll tries to keep her community safer by teaching free self-defense seminars for at-risk groups. She’s picked up used needles, coordinated homeless outreach and provided safety patrols since 2011. Rock N Roll has been profiled in People, Vanity Fair, movies and books. 


Superhero and Co-founder of the Superheroines Initiative

NightBug is a self-defense instructor, musician and, along with his wife Rock N Roll, co-founder of the California branch of the Superheroines Initiative, an international grassroots group of community activists. NightBug and Rock N Roll also own an award-winning dessert shop. NightBug’s love of Spider-Man and his ideals never really went away.

The Grim

Superhero and Army Veteran

The Grim is a nuclear submarine veteran who, for the past nine years, has spent most weekends with his Xtreme Justice League teammates trying to peacefully resolve potentially hostile situations in downtown San Diego. For him, costumed activism is the most direct route to being a good neighbor and a way to prevent the police from becoming involved in situations. 



Toronto’s T-Minus has produced records for some of the biggest names in music including Drake, Nicki Minaj, The Weeknd and Kendrick Lamar, to name a few. Garnering more than 20 awards and nominations (Grammys, Platinum certifications, multiple BMI’s Producer of the Year accolades), he’s one of the world’s most sought after producers.

Kiana 'rookz' Eastmond

CEO, Sandbox Studios

Kiana ‘rookz’ Eastmond has worked with some of Toronto’s most recognized artists including Drake, Raekwon, Kardinal Offishall, Vivian Scott Chew and many others. She is committed to developing the infrastructure in Canada that allows for the successful growth of Urban artists, which she helps to deliver as CEO of Sandbox Studios.

Kardinal Offishall

Rapper and Producer

Toronto-born Kardinal Offishall is a Canadian rapper and producer often credited as Canada’s “hip hop ambassador.” A four-time MMVA and Juno Award winner with multiple ASCAP and Socan awards, Offishall is regarded as one of the country’s best hip hop producers, known for his distinctive reggae and dancehall-influenced work.

Haviah Mighty


Canadian rapper Haviah Mighty was named one of XXL’s 15 Toronto Rappers You Should Know in 2019 and one of CBC Music’s “New Faces of Canadian Hip Hop.” Haviah rose to prominence as a member of the hip hop group The Sorority. Her debut album, 13th Floor, won the prestigious Polaris Music Prize in 2019.

Erin Lee

Founder and Mindfulness Coach, Mindful Moments Singapore

Erin conducts mindfulness training for corporate clients and organizations in both English and Chinese, and is also an experienced polytechnic lecturer. She is a Certified Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Teacher as recognized by the Mindfulness-Based Professional Training Institute at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) Center for Mindfulness. Erin has completed the UCSD School of Medicine’s Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Teacher Training Intensive as well as Advanced Teacher Training Intensive for MBSR and MBCT Teachers in California. She holds a Master of Science in Studies in Mindfulness with the University of Aberdeen, U.K. She is also a Professional Certified Stress Management Consultant as recognized by the Institute of Motivational Living.

Patrick Gagne

CEO, OSMO Foundation and Director of Bonjour Startup MTL

Patrick has helped build a wide variety of businesses and adapt their business models to our ever-changing digital world. From developing startups (TAG Taxi) to growing national entities (TC), Patrick has been an asset to many organizations with his skills in business and marketing strategy. He developed a passion for urban mobility since his involvement in P$ Mobile Service, the mobile application developed for Stationnement de Montréal. He co-founded Téo Taxi in 2014 and became General Manager of the startup in 2017. In early 2018, he joined the OSMO Foundation as CEO-in-Residence as a way to give back to the startup community and help the organization grow. He is now co-CEO of Bonjour Startup MTL, which he co-founded with the MTL Inc Foundation in 2018.

Anupam Yog


Anupam is a pragmatic urbanist with experience across public, private and social sectors. He is an advocate for healthy cities and is currently researching the connection between mental health and the built environment to develop a Conscious Cities Index. Based in Singapore, Anupam is an active practitioner of mindfulness meditation.

Joaquim Boadas

General Secretary, International Nightlife Association

Joaquim Boadas de Quintana is a Spanish lawyer specialized in nightlife matters. He also manages the International Nightlife Association and the Spanish Nightlife Association (Spain Nightlife) as General Secretary. Joaquim is a professional speaker on nightlife matters worldwide and has participated in numerous conferences regarding nightlife around the world such as in Italy, Berlin, Switzerland, Netherlands, the U.S., India and Colombia.

Eugene Rabkin

Founder and Editor of StyleZeitgeist

Eugene Rabkin is the founder and editor of StyleZeitgeist magazine, an independent fashion and culture publication. He has contributed articles to the Business of Fashion, 032c, Highsnobiety, Vogue Russia and GQ Style Russia. He has taught critical reading and writing at the Parsons New School for Design. Eugene was born in the USSR and lives and works in New York City.

Professor Lily Kong

President, Singapore Management University

Professor Kong is an award-winning researcher and teacher and has received five international fellowship awards. She is widely known for her research on urban transformations, and social and cultural change in Asia. In 2020, Professor Kong was conferred the Singapore Public Service Star (Bintang Bakti Masyarakat) award.

Nichol Ng

Co-founder, The Food Bank Singapore

Nichol Ng co-founded The Food Bank Singapore (FBSG) in 2012. The organization aims to end food insecurity in Singapore. FBSG collects and re-distributes excess food to more than 360 non-profit organizations, reaching out to more than 300,000 underprivileged people. Nichol is also the CEO of the X-Inc group of companies

John Tory

Mayor of Toronto

Born and raised in Toronto, Mayor Tory has spent his life giving back to the city he loves, through his tireless work in public, private sector and philanthropic roles. Elected as the 65th Mayor of Toronto in 2014 and re-elected in 2018, John Tory is making the city more liveable, affordable and functional. Under his leadership, Toronto has attracted jobs and investment and emerged as an undisputed centre of innovation and opportunity on the world stage.

Ahmed Ismail

Founder, HXOUSE

Founder and Head of Operations at HXOUSE, Ahmed Ismail’s culmination of experiences has laid the groundwork in driving HXOUSE to one day become a global platform for the next generation of creatives. Ahmed is also a well-known fundraiser and philanthropist dedicated to helping alleviate the challenges of underserved communities globally.

Chip Conley

Airbnb Strategic Advisor for Hospitality & Leadership Modern Elder Academy Founder

New York Times bestselling author Chip Conley is the boutique hotel entrepreneur who helped Airbnb’s founders turn their fast-growing tech start-up into a global hospitality brand. Chip is the founder of the Modern Elder Academy, where a new roadmap for midlife is offered at a beautiful oceanfront campus in Mexico.

Brian T. Mullis

Destination Management, Development and Marketing Specialist

From April 2018 – 2020, Brian was the Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), in which time the country became globally recognized as a leading sustainable destination. Prior to leading the GTA, he founded and led Sustainable Travel International for 14 years. Leading initiatives and delivering innovative solutions within governmental agencies and multinationals and for MSMEs and community leaders in 70+ countries has given Brian a unique ability to foster multi-stakeholder collaboration, bridge communication divides, and generate tangible results at scale.

Be Where How

Be Where How? is a small collective of content curators. They write, make films, record music, design art and now, discuss. Their backgrounds are all creative and their interests all overlap in mystic philosophy. Mysticism is not “magic” — it means an internal search for hidden truths, a remembering of reality, an undoing of the false to make way for the True.”

Cheri Hessami

Urbanist, Happy City

Cheri Hessami applies psychology, neuroscience and public health knowledge to create happy, healthy, inclusive urban spaces. During her time with Happy City, Cheri has used deep engagement techniques to help marginalized youth shape their community in Rotterdam, and to ensure that seldom-heard groups inform public space plans in Vancouver. She has embedded in communities to help them co-create a placemaking master plan for Superior, Colorado. And she has co-led pioneering studies on tactical urbanism projects, unearthing the remarkable effect that public plaza designs can have on feelings of safety and belonging. Cheri has a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Waterloo and a Bachelor of Arts & Science in Cognitive Science from McGill University.

Paty Rios

Senior Housing Expert, Happy City

Paty Rios is a global leader in promoting social wellbeing in built environments. She uses tools from architecture, urban design, ethnography and engagement to improve the design of parks, public spaces and housing around the world. Paty leads Happy Homes, an interdisciplinary research-action initiative to boost sociability and equity through the design of multi-unit housing. Happy Homes has been used to transform housing designs for dense cities from Canada to India. Paty’s experience on design thinking, bottom-up engagement strategies and social labs fuel her unique, inclusive engagement approaches. She has invented a new method for testing the wellbeing effects of large urban parks in Mexico City, and a new participatory engagement model for the School of Policy at the University of British Columbia. She is the Senior Housing Expert at Happy City.

Katherine Johnston

Senior Research Fellow, Global Wellness Institute

Katherine Johnston is a Senior Research Fellow at the Global Wellness Institute (GWI). Since 2008, she has conducted pioneering research on the global wellness economy, work that has become the leading resource for wellness sector data and insights among media, industry, and government. Previously as a Senior Economist at SRI International, Ms. Johnston led dozens of studies on economic competitiveness, industry cluster and workforce development, economic development program evaluation, and economic impact analysis/modeling—both across the United States and in countries around the world.

Daisann McLane

Founder, Little Adventures in Hong Kong Contributing Editor at National Geographic Traveler

Daisann McLane is a journalist and entrepreneur born in New York City. She was the New York Times’ travel section columnist for six years, and a National Geographic editor-at-large for 12. She has reported about culture, cuisine, politics and travel from more than 45 countries, and her special focus is Hong Kong, where she has spent most of the last 20 years. In 2009 McLane created Little Adventures in Hong Kong (LAHK), a concierge and consulting service targeted at food-focused world travelers, expats, and culinary pros. The company was recognized in National Geographic Traveler’s “Top 50 tours of a Lifetime” and in The Guardian’s “Top 20 Food Tours 2019”. A sister company, Local Intelligence HK, offers consulting services to corporate clients. McLane is a frequent speaker and panelist for a variety of seminars and events including TedX Hong Kong, the Foreign Correspondents Club of Hong Kong, the Smithsonian Institution, and National Geographic.

Chad Valencia

Co-owner and Executive Chef of Lasa LA

Chad Valencia has spent over the last decade in professional kitchens. It wasn’t until working at Corrina Weibel’s Canele that he cut his teeth and learned how to truly cook seasonally. He then spent time cooking at Brett Emerson’s seasonal Spanish neighborhood restaurant, Contigo, in San Francisco. He then returned home to Los Angeles and started the LASA Restaurant Project while cooking at Jessica Koslow’s Sqirl. Since then, Chad along with his brother Chase and their team has taken the project from a backyard dinner to a brick and mortar restaurant in Los Angeles, creating Filipino-inspired cuisine.

Chase Valencia

Co-owner and General Manager of Lasa LA

Chase Valencia has been in the restaurant industry for over a decade. He has worked every position in front of the house, starting as a busser and making his way into management. His experience began at a neighborhood eatery called Owen’s Bistro, where he first learned the value of food & hospitality. He then furthered his career by working at Wolfgang Puck Catering, where he was a Catering Sales & Operations Manager, Food & Beverage Controller, and Restaurant Manager for WPC accounts at LA Live, Sony Pictures Studios and Beats by Dre Headquarters. He worked for Silver Lake neighborhood favorites, Sqirl and Forage, while simultaneously developing the LASA concept until 2015.

Elaine Ng

Founder, The Fabrick Lab

Elaine Yan Ling Ng, nicknamed the ‘techno fairy’ by Elle Decor, is the founder of The Fabrick Lab, which brings together textiles, electronics, biomimicry, interiors and installations. A British Chinese materialologist, Ng graduated from Central Saint Martins in London where she earned her MA Design in Textile Futures with distinction. She is a TED Fellow and has been globally recognized, by multiple design awards, including The Emerging Talent Award by Design Anthology, GGEF’s Eco Innovator Award, Swarovski’s Designer of the Future Award and Tatler’s Gen T Award. In 2020, Ng has been appointed by Nature Squared as their Chief Material Innovator. Ng has worked with Nissan Design Europe and Nokia Design Beijing and is on the top 50 brightest connectors, creative visionaries, influential innovators and disruptive talents in Hong Kong.

Sarah Mui

Co-Founder and Design Director of One Bite Design Studio

Sarah is a Co-Founder and Design Director of One Bite Design Studio and One Bite Social. She received a Bachelor of Architectural Studies degree from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and a Master of Architecture from University College London in the UK. She is a registered architect in Hong Kong. At One Bite, her most recent design project includes Siu Hei Playground in Tuen Mun, Design District Hong Kong – Creative Placemaking (Wanchai) campaign, City Dress Up: Seats Together public furniture design project in Happy Valley, and the Hong Kong-Macau Visual Arts Biennale. Sarah and her team have been demonstrating how social design can be applied through a series of social creative experiments, including the Project House and WonderFOLD (eco-mask holder) projects. Since 2019, an online knowledge-sharing platform GUTS has been founded to bring in international insights in promoting better urban space for the public.

Jonathan Cummings

President, Greater China, Landor & FITCH Group

Jonathan Cummings is President, Greater China, of the Landor & FITCH Group, and Chairman of FITCH Hong Kong. Since Jonathan founded the business in the city in 2009, FITCH Hong Kong has grown to be a leader in the region for connected retail experiences, delivering renowned concepts for brands including Singtel, BMW, Maxis and M&M’s. FITCH HK have also developed a proprietary technology platform, MXP, for connected experiences at a mall-level that has been adopted by Swire, K11 and Sun Hung Kai amongst others for their flagship developments.

Andrew Weir

Vice Chairman, KPMG China & Global Chairman of Asset Management and Real Estate KPMG

Andrew is the Regional Senior Partner of KPMG in Hong Kong and Vice Chairman of KPMG China and Global Chairman of Asset Management and Real Estate of KPMG International. He has over 25 years’ experience servicing listed companies, public bodies, investment funds and MNCs in Hong Kong, China, Asia and internationally. He has a keen interest in corporate governance, board leadership and business in the community and leads the quarterly KPMG Independent Non-Executive Directors Forum. Andrew chairs the Listing Committee of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and sits on the advisory panels of the Securities Institute, Hong Kong Investor Relations Association and Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). He was appointed by the HKSAR Government as a council member of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC).

Justin Randolph

Owner of YogaLoft

Justin Randolph is a sought-after innovator of wellness, a seasoned yoga teacher, and a Reiki Master. Justin has taught for Google, World Spine Organization, Prison Yoga Project, and leads global wellness retreats annually. Prior to living in Los Angeles, Justin was a full-time yoga teacher and an actor in NYC for 13 years. He lives in Los Angeles with his husband Greg, two dogs and kitten.

Marcy Richardson

Described by Theater Mania as a performer who is “worth the price of admission alone” (Nutcracker Rouge-Company XIV), soprano Marcy Richardson has brought the craft of marrying aerial arts and acrobatic pole with live classical singing to opera and entertainment companies worldwide. She has performed with the opulent baroque burlesque troupe Company XIV, her “home company,” full-time for the past 5 years in Brooklyn. She also regularly stars in the Bartschland Follies with Susanne Bartsch at the Mckittrick Hotel, and at the high-end all-live music and burlesque supper club Duane Park. She was the 2018 Dora Mavor Moore Award winner (the Canadian equivalent of a Tony) for Best Female Performance in an opera for her portrayal of Amour in Gluck’s Orphée with Against the Grain Theater and Opera Columbus. She recently appeared as Star in the movie “Hustlers.”

Susan Feninger

American chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and radio and TV personality

Iconic culinarian, author, and entrepreneur Susan Feniger may be best known for her Modern Mexican concept, Border Grill restaurants, trucks, and catering, which she runs with her business partner of more than 35 years, Mary Sue Milliken. Feniger and Milliken brought their innovative approaches to The Food Network with nearly 400 episodes of the “Too Hot Tamales” and “Tamales World Tour” series. They also were the original co-hosts of the popular food-centric radio show, KCRW’s “Good Food,” in L.A. Susan has co-authored six cookbooks, including Susan Feniger’s Street Food and competed on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” in 2010. In 2018, Feniger and Milliken were named the recipients of the fourth annual Julia Child Award from The Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts, and were the first women to be honored by the award.

Michael Koh

Executive Fellow, Centre for Liveable Cities

Michael Koh is Executive Fellow of the Centre for Liveable Cities. He is involved in research, organization of the World Cities Summit and Mayors Forum, capability development and international advisory projects. Michael has previously served as CEO of the National Heritage Board and National Art Gallery, and Director of Urban Planning and Design at the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

Peter Rose, FAIA, FRAIC

Principal, Peter Rose + Partners

Peter Rose is a recognized leader in the architectural design profession. Since beginning his practice in 1978, he has received numerous awards for residential, institutional, and urban design projects. The scale of his work has varied from large urban design projects, such as the Old Port of Montreal Waterfront Master Plan to private residential commissions. In addition to his professional practice, Peter has maintained a long-term involvement in architectural education.

Peter D. Cummings

Executive Chairman & CEO, The Platform

Peter has been active in real estate development and management since 1975. He is the founder of RAM, a leader in real estate investment, management and development, based in Palm Beach County and active throughout the Southeast. In 2015, Peter stepped down as chairman of RAM to create The Platform and dedicated the next chapter of his career to helping rebuild Detroit through creating new housing and retail developments.

Anna Minton


Anna Minton is a writer and journalist and Reader in Architecture at the University of East London (UEL). Between 2011-2014 Anna was the Royal Commission’s Fellow in the Built Environment and in 2013 joined the University of East London (UEL) as Reader in Architecture where she is Programme Leader of the MRes programme, ‘Reading the Neoliberal City’. Her books include Ground Control (2009) and ‘Big Capital: Who is London for?’ on the housing crisis (2017). Anna is a regular contributor to The Guardian, and a frequent broadcaster and conference speaker. She is a member of the editorial collective of the journal CITY and Chair of Trustees of Lambeth & Southwark MIND.

Fanny Shin

Strategist, BETC PLACES

A graduate of Sciences Po Paris, Fanny is passionate about trends and cities. As a strategist for BETC and BETC PLACES, she is working for several institutions and companies linked to Greater Paris, urbanism, culture and sports. Prior to joining BETC, Fanny served as trend researcher for Pernod Ricard’s innovation department and prospective agency NellyRodi.

Lauren Sorkin

Executive Director, Global Resilient Cities Network (GRCN

Lauren oversees global efforts to strengthen cities in the face of the complex and interconnected challenges they face. Leading teams in London, Mexico City, New York, and Singapore in collaboration with Chief Resilience Officers in more than 40 countries, she drove the co-design process to launch GRCN as an independent city-led network organization.

Annalie Riches

Founding Director, Mikhail Riches Architects

Annalie Riches established Mikhail Riches Architects to improve the quality of housing and neighborhoods in the UK. Her focus is on the delivery of projects that change the perceptions of the places they touch, making enjoyable new places, as well as great homes. Annalie contributes across all the scales of architectural practice; she is recognised for her masterplanning and strategic abilities, as well as her in-depth knowledge of housing. Projects include Goldsmith Street housing development which was the RIBA Stirling Prize Winner 2019 and Velocity, the winning entry to the 2018 Infrastructure Commission Competition for providing 200,000 new homes between Oxford and Cambridge.

Pierre-Emmanuel Becherand

Director of Design & Art Department, Société du Grand Paris

Pierre-Emmanuel Becherand is director of design and art department for the Société du Grand Paris, leading architects, designers and artists for the construction of 68 new stations of the Grand Paris Express network (125 miles of fully automatic new metro lines). In 2017, he created the Foundation of the Grand Paris Express, chaired by Rémi Babinet, aimed at financing art with private money. He now directs the entire program of artistic commissions in stations and cultural actions on the construction sites of the new metro.

Pauline Marchetti

Architect, Founding Partner of Ferrier Marchetti Studio

Pauline Marchetti is a qualified architect. She graduated from the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Paris-Belleville. She is a founding partner of Ferrier Marchetti Studio and a Professor at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. She develops a humanist approach to architecture, propounding design and research methods that are based on the sensory dimension of space—volume, materiality, light, and ambiance. Pauline Marchetti started to collaborate with her partner Jacques Ferrier in 2008 when they designed the French Pavilion for the Shanghai World Expo. Since then, they have developed a significant portfolio that combines research and architecture.

Derek Gagne

Associate Principal, EDSA

Fueled by his global project experiences and personal travels, Derek is inspired by the understanding and application of movement, space and context. He strives to blend the intrinsic qualities of a site with essential design elements to form a narrative that elevates the user experience. Prioritizing functionality and craftsmanship, his diverse portfolio represents destination treasures that serve as nodes for social, cultural and ecological enrichment. His ability to discover and articulate robust, invigorating design concepts is showcased in his mastery of extending patterns, textures and forms into a cohesive continuum. Derek is a registered Landscape Architect and graduate of the University of Guelph. He is an active member of the American Society of Landscape Architects, Urban Land Institute and United States Green Building Council.

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