46th ISOCARP congress

Type: Meeting or Conference

Organizer(s): International Society of City and Regional Planners, the

Date: 20-21 Sep 2010

Location: Nairobi (Kenya)


  • Description

  • Background

    A sustainable outcome of the world’s urbanisation process is largely dependent on what happens in cities in the developing world. Developing countries will triple their entire built-up urban area by 2030, at astounding speeds and with significant resource constraints. According to the World Bank, developing countries’ newly constructed urban areas in the next thirty years will be equal to the world’s total built area as of 2000.

    The size of the challenge is proportional to the window of opportunity that it may open. If the world is to be a sustainable system, cities in developing nations need to operate as engines of employment and investment, reducing disparities, marginalisation and exclusion, providing access to health, education, transport, and basic infrastructure and services, and allowing for social realisation. Mitigating and adapting to climate change, and addressing urban environment issues such as the input-output equation, the use of water, land, and energy and other resources, and the connection between cities and their rural surroundings are vital components in the agenda of making urbanisation a positive force. Addressing humanitarian emergencies, both natural and man-made, in urban settings is also assuming increasing significance as urbanisation, and the urbanisation of poverty, gathers momentum, leaving large segments of the urban populations vulnerable and defenceless.

    Tackling this urgent agenda will require no small changes from everyone involved. Actors in urban development will be emphatically asked to deliver integrated and imaginative solutions in, inter alia, governance, participation, policy, finance and design, at a pace and scale that matches the magnitude of the challenge. This will demand from planning professionals to look at what they do, how they do it, and with and for whom they do it from a fresh perspective. In doing so, they would be able to reinvent themselves in a central, proactive and holistic role as the urban opportunity unfolds.


    Under the theme of Sustainable City / Developing World, the 2010 ISOCARP Congress will focus on the agenda of sustainable urbanisation where the largest urban transformation process will take place.

    An open, plenary session will be held at UN-Habitat’s Gigiri campus in Nairobi, indicating the emerging partnership with the foremost UN agency dealing with urban matters. In addition, the congress will reflect the need for a multi-stakeholder response to this pressing agenda through the participation of other international organisations, sister societies, and the private sector.

  • Target audience

  • ISOCARP believes that its uniquely multi-faceted and multi-cultural constituency, which brings together planners in theory, policy and practice from 81 countries, is the right setting to articulate an active dialogue towards harnessing the benefits and mitigating the negative impacts of urbanisation.