The New Cities Summit, to be held on May 14th -16th 2012 in Paris, will unite global thought leaders, mayors and city managers, leading CEOs and representatives of civil society to discuss one of the most important topics of our time: the future of cities in the 21st century.
The global shift from rural to urban living is one of the most dramatic and important demographic phenomena in human history. By 2050, more than 7 billion people will live in cities worldwide. In countries like China, which is rapidly approaching a billion city dwellers, and other parts of the world urbanization requires a profound physical, social and economic transformation.
Globally, this new world of cities will have a massive impact on our economies, on government, on societies and on us as individuals in both the developed and the emerging world. This mega trend is likely to impact each one of us in ways that we know will be profound, but are not yet fully understood.
The theme of the 2012 New Cities Summit, Thinking Ahead, Building Together, reflects the New Cities Foundation’s belief that understanding and contributing to our urban future requires new partnerships built on bold, audacious thinking and analysis.
High-level plenaries featuring some of the world’s greatest urban thinkers will focus on the vision of tomorrow’s urban world, and detailed workshops deal with topics including mobility, the creative and connected city, the annotated city, the just city, water, building greener districts and infrastructure financing for the urban boom.
Regional sessions explore Urban China, Latin America and India as well as Greater Paris. “Navigating the Meta City” a highly-interactive session led by frog, a leading design and innovation firm, offers a glimpse into a future city in which various layers of software constitute a powerful computing platform for hybrid digital-physical environments.
Confirmed speakers and participants include leaders from industry, the public sector, research, and design include:
Ajit Gulabchand Chairman of the Hindustan Construction Group
Anthony Williams, former Mayor of Washington, DC
Bertrand Delanoë, Mayor of Paris, France
Carlo Ratti, SENSEable Lab at Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Clara Gaymard, President, GE France
Christian Sautter, Deputy Mayor, Paris, France
Daniel Libeskind, Architect
Di-Ann Eisnor, Vice President, Waze
Diane Brady, Senior Editor and Content Chief, Businessweek
Edwin Heathcote, Architect and Design Critic, Financial Times
Fahd Al Rasheed, Managing Director and CEO, King Abdullah Economic City
Geoffrey West, Professor Emeritus, Santa Fe Institute
Gérard Mestrallet, CEO, GDF Suez
Gregor Robertson, Mayor of Vancouver, Canada
Hans Vestberg, President and CEO, Ericsson
Jay Carson, CEO, C40 Cities
James Lee, Architect, iContinuum
Jean-Charles Decaux, co-CEO, JCDecaux
Jean-Louis Missika, Deputy Mayor, Paris, France
Jean Pistre, Architect
John Rice, Vice Chairman, GE
Kasim Reed, Mayor of Atlanta, United States Of America
Khalifa Sall Mayor of Dakar, Senegal
Li Dongming, Manager of the urban Fund at China Development Bank Capital
Nathalie Leboucher, Vice-President, Smart Cities, France Télécom - Orange
Oleg Alexeev, Vice President of the Skolkovo Foundation
Pablo Farias, Vice President, Ford Foundation
Parag Khanna, Senior Research Fellow, New America Foundation
Partick Le Galès, Directeur de recherche, Sciences Po
Pierre Mansat, Deputy Mayor, Paris, France
Paul Delaoutre, CEO, , Department Stores Division, BHV, Galeries Lafayette
Ricky Burdett, Director, LSE Cities
Robert Beugré Mambé, Governor of Abidjan
Robin Chase, CEO of Buzzcar, Founder of Zipcar
Ron Huldai, Mayor of Tel Aviv, Israel
Saskia Sassen, Professor, Columbia University
Seifallah Lasram, Mayor of Tunis, Tunisia
Vivek Badrinath, CEO, Orange Business Services
Wim Elfrink, Executive Vice President, Cisco
Wolfgang Mueller-Pietralla, Head of Future Affairs Volkswagen Group Research
Xie Chengxiang, Deputy Mayor, Huangshi, People’s Republic of China
Zhang Qin, Deputy Director,Department of Urbanism, Minister of Housing, People’s Republic of China
The Summit’s partners include key innovators in the urban world, such as urban and street artists from the Magda Danysz Gallery in Paris and Shanghai, social innovators from Ashoka, great new technological innovators and start-ups including Waze and Autolib’ who will give demos of their urban innovations at the Summit. The Summit will also examine the New Cities Foundation’s own cutting-edge projects in the areas of healthcare and mobility.
“We are only at the early stages of understanding the impact of global urbanization,” says John Rossant, Chairman of the New Cities Foundation. “This is a phenomenon of unprecedented scale that will affect all of our lives. The New Cities Summit is essential as it is the sole venue which brings together great urban thinkers and builders from a range of disciplines which focuses the global conversation on the city. From the big picture vision to the hands on solutions, we want this Summit to be a watershed event.”