Member and Partner Event Details

Different Ways of Smart Governance in Asian Urban Systems

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On Saturday, June 11th 2016, CityNet delivered a session as part of Seoul Module of the Executive Master in Innovative Governance of Large Urban Systems (IGLUS).

During the session, Sayel Cortes and Heesoo Joo from CityNet presented and discussed on the differences and similarities of smart cities in Asia. Two guest speakers from CityNet’s active member cities, Mr. Naoki Otomo from Yokohama City and Ms. Violeta Seva from Makati City brought their own perspectives on what a smart city is.

Being a smart city doesn’t mean to use top technology, but to use technology in a smart way. By providing examples on the way different cities in Asia are using technology and discussing on their different approaches, challenges, and advantages; this session aims to get participants to reflect on the key considerations needed when implementing a system in their cities.

The basic assumption is that each city has a different context, and that technology has to be fully adapted to this context to produce “smart” results. According to this, the newest or “best” technology might not be the appropriate answer for a specific city challenges. On the other side, simpler “low-tech” solutions might provide smart solutions for a specific city challenge.

This executive master program offered by the Ecole Polytechnique Fererale de Lausanne consists of 6 modules in 6 different cities covering six key challenges of urban development. The Seoul module, locally supported by Sungkyunkwan University, focuses on the technological challenge by inviting experts from different Korean universities, research centers, local government, and international organizations.

Expert Group Meeting on Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific


The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) held an Expert Group Meeting on Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific focusing on the new urban agenda. The meeting took place in Bangkok, Thailand from December 2nd-3rd, 2014.

The objectives of this Expert Group Meeting are:
• Identify and discuss emerging issues related to the sustainable urban development in Asia and the Pacific, reflecting the key inputs from stakeholders working in the urban sector.
• Identify and discuss priority issues for the region in relation to the post-2015 Development Agenda and Habitat III, which could be discussed at the sixth Asia Pacific Urban Forum (APUF-6) that will take place in May 2015. APUF is a multi-stakeholder forum organized periodically every 4-5 years by UNESCAP with the aim to provide a regional platform for urban actors to discuss and share experiences on emerging urban development issues
• Substantively engage key regional partners in the organization of APUF-6 as a multi-stakeholder forum, specifically through an inclusive preparatory process.

Six sessions were laid out during the two-day meeting, namely:
1. Introduction to the Expert Group Meeting to provide the background and objectives of the meeting
2. Sustainable Urban Development in the Post-2015 Development Agenda
3. Priority Issues for Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific – Economic Development
4. Priority Issues for Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific – Governance
5. Priority Issues for Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific – Social Development
6. Priority Issues for Sustainable Urban Development in Asia and the Pacific – Environmental Sustainability

The Meeting is expected to contribute to the Habitat III due to be held in 2016.

EcoMobility World Festival 2015

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EcoMobility World Festival 2015
The EcoMobility World Festival demonstrates urban mobility without dependency on the private automobile in a real city, by real people, in real time. Taking place in South Africa’s economic capital, the EcoMobility World Festival 2015 in Johannesburg shall demonstrate how an ecomobile business district looks like. Walking, cycling, and using buses and trains – for a cleaner air, healthier lifestyle and livable city.
Conveniently commuting through your city in an affordable and environmental friendly way, feeling healthy and enjoying your urban public space – try a greener urban lifestyle at the EcoMobility World Festival 2015 in Sandton, Johannesburg!

EcoMobility Dialogues 2015
A series of dialogue sessions is a key part of the EcoMobility World Festival 2015. They will bring together thought leaders, decision makers and implementers of innovative forms of sustainable urban mobility to shape the future of urban mobility. Solutions will be sought to reduce the dominance of private automobiles in cities and to build an urban transport system that meets the needs of residents while minimizing energy consumption, emissions, material use and space requirements. The EcoMobility Dialogues will be hosted by the City of Johannesburg and organized in partnership with ICLEI from 5 – 9 October 2015. Various pre- and post-events are being planned together with partners of the Dialogues.


For more information: Ecomobility Festival Brochure


International Symposium on Sustainable Future in Asia (TBD)

International Symposium on Sustainable Future in Asia (TBD) 

Date                  January 27-28, 2016

Venue                Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand (TBD)


  Addressing problems related to climate change, Biodiversity loss and urban planning requires a comprehensive approach which includes technological changes and innovations coupled with societal reforms. For scientific and technological innovation on climate, biodiversity and urban related issues, scientists and researchers require information from multiple sectors which are often governed by the state.

The purpose of this symposium is to seek new ways of thinking to address the above mentioned challenges through an ‘information based’ policy development process. In this symposium we highlight four solution areas within the broader theme of Climate Change, biodiversity and urban planning namely;

・       Low Carbon Societies : Governments are gearing towards making progress in developing low carbon societies and  have made proposals for monitoring industry, business, transport and for individual households sectors. Tremendous progress has been made in realising this transformation, nonetheless, challenges still remain in the way governments and citizens perceive the process. This in fact has lead to heterogenous approaches by (or within) a state  making it difficult  to strategise or recommend any particular measure for a country or a region. One way to bring uniformity to the process is by developing a common framework of action at an international, regional or national level. Such measures are already recommended by the United Nations and regional bodies such as ASEAN. The recent sustainable development  goals also seek for low carbon measures and particularly on monitoring low carbon scenarios. Considering all the current needs, it is important to bring together the various developments that has taken place in monitoring low carbon measures in Asia.

・       Environmental Monitoring from Local to Global: Though environmental problems are considered a global issue, except for climate change, the impact of environmental problems are faced more at a local scale. Hence addressing such problems require monitoring grass root environmental issues and we should see how it effects national and international scenarios. However monitoring such issues are constrained by socio-political, technological and policy related issues. To address these challenges, we need to bring together the different streams of information compiled by governments, research institutions and NGO’s to a common decision making platform. The symposium will thus look into the environmental monitoring from a local to a global level.

・       Monitoring Biodiversity and Ecosystem services: Asian region is rich in biodiversity and is also a hub for ecosystem services. However, rapid development, industrial growth and illegal harvesting has lead to depletion of biodiversity. In order to address this complexity,  spatial and temporal information on biodiversity is fundamental. Such information is also required for assessing the various transformation exercises carried out by governments and local bodies in Asia for conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. There exists multiple research projects to monitor biodiversity loss and management. Integration of such projects are also essential to identify key measures for addressing the challenges faced to the Asian biodiversity ecosystem.

・       Waste management:  Waste management is one major issue which is posing a challenge for the growth of Asian cities. Though countries such as Japan and Singapore has advocated intensive measures for the management of waste, several developing countries in Asia are still facing acute problems in managing waste. The key question is then on how can scientists, researchers and policy makers address the growing needs of the developing Asia in addressing challenges related to waste management. It is also important to assess the existing laws and policies on waste management in developing countries and how effective such policies are. For bringing the right mix of policy and technology, there is a need for an overall information on the behavioural pattern of the society and socio-economic situation at the local level.

Workshop Goals and Objectives

The purpose of this symposium will be to first highlight the current conditions on the above mentioned key issues faced by Asian societies. Focusing primarily on the information needs and requirements, the symposium will then highlight the ways to bridge the information gaps through effective and integrated monitoring systems. Based on these assessments, recommendations will be prepared on how societal transformations can be achieved in addressing the above problems. The

recommendation from the symposium can be used to stress the urgency of addressing environmental concerns among target public and private institutions to take responsibility on specific areas where there is a need for a change. Such recommendations can also support the existing global mechanism to address those challenges.

Organisers and Co-organisers

  1. Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Thailand
  2. National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES), Japan
  3. The University of Tokyo (UTYO), Japan


Around 200 (TBD)

(Research scientists from three organizing institutes, AIT students, governmental officials, companies)


Download Program


CDIA MFA Training on Urban Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience

In collaboration with the Singapore Cooperation Program and USAID Adapt Asia Pacific, Cities Development Initiative Asia (CDIA) is proud to announce that the Urban Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience Training to be held in Singapore from 23-27 May 2016 is now open for applications from cities in the Asian region.

The course aims to improve climate change knowledge among senior-level managers working in urban and infrastructure planning and, in turn, help them design better adaptation projects. This seven-module training starts with an introduction to climate change adaptation; provides tools and techniques for assessing climate change impacts and vulnerabilities; presents a framework for identification, design, appraisal, evaluation, and implementation of climate adaptation strategies, programs and projects; and finally looks at the options available for financing adaptation projects. Site visits in Singapore are also integrated into the program.

Duly completed Application Forms must be sent to

Call for Applications
Individual Application Form

LUCI Annual General Meeting in Seoul, 2-6 November


LUCI (Lighting Urban Community International) and Seoul Metropolitan Government are organizing the LUCI Annual General Meeting in Seoul from 2-6 November 2016. CityNet is supporting partner of the event.

This international forum for cities on urban lighting provides a platform for a broad range of stakeholders such as local governments, international organizations, non-governmental organizations and private companies. Representatives from cities from around the world will showcase and discuss innovative urban lighting initiatives and trends, addressing issues such as energy efficiency, smart lighting, light festivals, and more.

Please join the event and take the opportunity to connect with other important stakeholders and promote your innovative projects in the field of urban lighting.

LUCI is an international network of cities and lighting professionals committed to using light as a major tool for sustainable urban, social and economic development.

More information, including the program can be found on the event’s official website here:



4th Annual Urban Renewal conference brings together a powerful platform for government authorities and private organisations in discussing and delivering best practices and ideas for renewing and spearheading social, economic and urban transformation for cities. Let’s unleash the potential of urban developers and policymakers in deciding an effective project delivery.


• Planning for long-term growth and renewal process
• Creating competitive, liveable, energy e¬fficient and sustainable cities
• Designing and generating a masterplan in urban renewal projects
• Revitalizing aging and decaying inner cities: Urban Renewal Strategies
• Deciding on community-based development and public participation
• Recognising critical components of urban development process from project area initiation to execution


Day 1

Day 2

For more event information, click on the link below or copy-and-paste into your browser:

Only limited seats are allocated for this event.

For registration/inquiry, please contact:
Karen Leong
Tel: +603-2775 0000 (ext 510)


Livelihood Opportunities, Local Economic Development Strategies and Social Protection for Poor Urban Informal Workers in Southeast Asia

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As part of the Asia Development Dialogue, a regional dialogue platform for governments, private sector, civil society, and academia, Oxfam, in collaboration with CityNet, WIEGO, and UCLG-ASPAC supported by The Rockefeller Foundation, organized a two-day workshop from May 10th in Bangkok. Approximately 47 people attended the workshop that focused on Inclusive Economies in Cities: Livelihood Opportunities, Local Economic Development Strategies and Social Protection for Poor Urban Informal Workers in Asia to foster and promote new ways and tools for inclusive growth and inclusive local economic development in South East Asia.

One of the discussion highlights was that there is a parallel growth of informal sectors alongside the formal economy in developing countries like in most ASEAN and South Asian countries. However, informal workers in some countries have not been integrated to the participatory planning process, thus haven’t exercised their rights to influence the policy making process. This triggered a debate whether informal economy needs to be formalized. That said there was another argument that formalization might not necessarily be the answer. Government’s main focus is to help the informal workers improve their productivity and opportunity for their voices to be heard by the government. Some of the success cases presented during the workshop included Makassar, Indonesia and Seberang Perai, Malaysia.

One other discussion highlights was the role of private sector, whether private sector has a role in providing opportunities for the informal workers. In the workshop, private sector representatives focused on the use of technology as a way to improve the productivity of informal workers such as the case of Echo Store and Grab Car.

Echo Store is a successful organic store in the Philippines that relies on products supplied by home-based micro and small enterprises run by women. Echo Store founder Pacita San Juan said the store also helps women improve the packaging and design of their products to make them more appealing. San Juan said that private sector depends on government’s efforts to engage with the informal sector. Private sector also needs to continue supporting government’s policies in improving the lives of informal sectors.

The workshop concluded with a general consensus that all inputs could be further discussed at the upcoming regional forums particularly UN Habitat Preparatory Committee Meeting III in Surabaya.

UN-Habitat Opportunity: Shelter Academy 2014

As presented by Dr. Joan Clos, Executive Director of UN-Habitat and Neil McArthur, CEO of ARCADIS NV, we are pleased to announce the the Fourth Annual Shelter Academy, Adapting & Mitigating Climate Change: Options for Cities, that will take place in Amsterdam and Rotterdam, The Netherlands during the period 1-4 September 2014. See attached brochure.

Target Audience
– The 2014 Academy is aimed at UN-Habitat Partner Cities.
– Participation is targeting (but not limited to) high-level local officials and senior level decision makers and policy makers, including mayors) from mid-sized municipalities, in the Africa, Asia and Pacific, as well as the Latin America regions.
– It is anticipated that these participants will be able to act as ‘multipliers’ within their own organizations and regions, communicating best practices and key lessons learned from the Academy to colleagues and counterparts. The Academy aims to host a maximum of 20 participants.
– The official language of the Academy will be English.

The academy is focused on actual participant-driven case studies. Participants are expected to prepare and present their own case studies which will increase knowledge exchange, self-reflection on problems and solutions and collective learning on urban development challenges related to climate change. These should be presented and in power point format. Participants are expected to reflect on strategies to overcome these challenges. The Academy will promote learning and capacity building on the topic of cities and climate change and will foster a meaningful dialogue on how cities are responding to these challenges. Additional case studies from lecturers, site visits and peer-to-peer dialogues with Dutch municipalities, policy makers and decision makers will further enhance the quality of the programme.

The programme provides fellowships to participants who meets the credentials of the target audience.
The fellowship includes travel from and to home country, accommodation in the Netherlands, meals, local transport, training materials, site visits to Dutch cities, meeting with their peers.
The selection is competitive for the limited number of fellowships.

The attached registration form should be sent to not later than 30th of May.
Selected participants should send their case study in ppt format not later than 1st of July.

For further information contact

Shelter-brochure 2014
Registration Form Shelter Academy 2014

Better Air Quality Conference 2014

The Better Air Quality 2014 Conference will be held in Colombo, Sri Lanka from 19 -21 November 2014 at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall. The BAQ conference is a flagship event of Clean Air Asia covering the key sectors of transport, energy, industry and climate change. The BAQ2014 theme is “Next Generation Solutions for Clean Air and Sustainable Transport – Towards a Livable Society in Asia.” Up to 800 participants are expected to participate from more than 30 countries worldwide.

Several sessions at the main conference and at pre-events are dedicated to cities organized by international and regional organizations supporting cities:

  • Cities’ Solutions for Clean Air
  • Climate Financing and Green Cities
  • Science-based Clean Air Plans of Cities
  • Cities Clean Air Partnership
  • Using BenMAP-CE to Estimate Air Pollution Benefits
  • AirNow-International – A Growing Community of Users
  • Partnerships in Building Capacity towards Better Air Quality and Co-Benefits in Smaller Cities
  • Improving Air Quality Monitoring in Asia
  • Household Air Pollution – the silent killer
  • Livable Cities are Pedestrian- and Bicycle-Friendly Cities
  • Triple Green: Sustainable Cities, Ports and Freight
The Colombo Municipal Council will also host a Special Mayor’s Session on Sustainable Cities on November 21 from 16.30-18.30.
Click here for the overview of the program, pre-events and the main conference. For detailed information on the conference and registration, visit

The conference is co-organized by the Ministry of Transport of Sri Lanka, the Ministry of Environment and Renewable Energy of Sri Lanka, and Clean Air Asia, in partnership with the Asian Development Bank, German International Cooperation (GIZ), and World Bank. BAQ2014 is integrated with the Intergovernmental 8th Regional Environmentally Sustainable Transport Forum in Asia organized by the Ministry of Transport of Sri Lanka, Ministry of the Environment of Japan, and the United Nations Centre for Regional Development.