IFHP: New Nordic with a Sustainable Urban Twist

IFHP: New Nordic with a Sustainable Urban Twist

New Nordic Initiatives with a Sustainable Urban Twist
No time for hibernation up north. IFHP can report that the winter months have been full of new Nordic initiatives advancing urban solutions instrumental to the implementation of the New Urban Agenda, Climate Action Agenda and UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
 
Just weeks after Quito the results of Nordic Built Cities challenge were announced. Comprised of a charter, a competition and an export aim, the Nordic Built Cities is programme rooted in with Nordic Council of Ministers and focusing on the development, visualization and export of innovative solutions for liveable, smart and sustainable cities. The Nordic Built Cities competition challenge featured six local winners from the respective Nordic countries of Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, and with one overall winning urban solution being “The Soul of Nørrebro” for Copenhagen, marrying public green amenity and rainwater uptake tackling extreme rainwater events and building climate resilency. This wonderful project masterminded by multidisciplinary team including SLA and Rambøll, who happens to be good friends of IFHP. The second and third place winners were also quite very worthy contenders, from Finland and the Faroe Island, featuring housing solution geared towards shared and communal living – addressing the need for housing for all, which is high on IFHP’s own agenda. The next step is to push for realization of one or more of these admirable urban solutions, which the jury deemed also transferable to other contexts.
 
Perhaps one of the first post Habitat III convenings, at least in The North, was that on the Implementation of the New Urban Agenda, which took place in Stockholm on 16th December 2016. This was orchestrated by impendent think tank Global Utmaning, who were also involved in the Swedish presence at Habitat III. Underpinning this conference was Nordic Urban Ways report on Local leadership, governance, & management for sustainable development targeting SDG 11 and offering a great survey of various urban governance structures inherent to Nordic context and instrumental to NUA. An important outcome of the conference was Nordic Declaration on the Implementation of the New Urban Agenda outcome document. An early signal of a wave of Nordic initiatives putting the NUA and UN 2030 Agenda front and center.
 
A lot is going these days in IFHP’s own home turf of Copenhagen: Just recently on 6th February C40 opened the doors to its new C40 Copenhagen office, which will serve as a centre for the network’s global Business, Economy and Innovation Programme. Copenhagen has one of world’s most ambitous climate plans aiming for zero CO2 emissions by 2025. With C40 setting up shop in Copenhagen, the hope is to encourage still more mayors around the world to look at Copenhagen’s wide range of green solutions in urban planning, energy, cycling infrastructure and more, for inspiration.
 
IFHP is very pleased to welcome the C40 Copenhagen team as our new office mates, where we co-located in the BLOXHub. We look forward to shared hygge and collective ambition to advance sustainable urban solutions through our respective lens’ of NUA and Climate Action.
 
The 8th February saw the launch of Sustainia Living initiative, demonstrating and communicating “how your choices today – including how you live, how you eat, and how you dress – build the world of tomorrow. This initiative puts a human face on the Sustainable Development Goals, showcasing how they look in practice and telling the story of how they resonate individually with all of us.” And with this the publication of Danish Pioneers: Building the World of Tomorrow, featuring one of our own favorites, the Gehl practice - making cities for people.
 
On the academic front the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts School of Architecture, Design and Conservation aka KADK announced its sustainable goal – where for the next three years, the Academy will dedicate all academic work and studies to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. With its 1,600 students, the Academy will become one of the world’s largest labs for sustainable solutions.
 
IFHP’s own direct contributions to the Nordic scene are soon up in March: First up is Danish film premier of “Citizen Jane: Battle Cry for the City” as part of the CPH:DOX documentary film festival taking place in Copenhagen 16th – 26th March. Some of us has the great pleasure of previewing Citizen Jane in Quito, at the World Stage in Habitat III Expo area. Coming up in Copenhagen, IFHP will be partnering with the Gehl practice in host a talk by Jan Gehl on Jane’s eyes on the street and petitions for the life of great American cities and Jan’s perspectives spanning from life between buildings to cities for people.
 
There next IFHP is taking the NUA to Denmark’s seat of power with New Urban Agenda at Folketinget event on 30th March. Here IFHP in collaboration with Danish Architecture Center Danish Architecture Center are gathering leading Danish leaders, decisionmakers, policymakers, thinkers and influencers along with some of our Nordic friends in halls of Folketinget for dialogue on the gamut of UN Agendas – sustainable development, climate action and cities – collectively all important for a sustainable future. The New Urban Agenda at Folketinget event will feature an array of distinguished guests and speakers including Mogens Lykketoft, former Speaker of the Folketing, who just recently concluded his term as President of the UN General Assembly, and who can call us to action on the threefold agendas: UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Climate Action Agenda and the New Urban Agenda.
 
That’s a warp on sustainable initiatives and urban solutions from our own courtyard. At IFHP we are trying to do our bit to extend the NUA and advance urban solutions from north to south, from east to west.
Hope to see you soon out there somewhere.
 
 
Coming up on the IFHP Calendar:
 
14th – 17th March 2017, IFHP Panel at MIPIM, on “Housing for All” in Cannes, France,
 
7th – 9th March 2017, WDS Pre-Summit I, in Paris, France, the first preparatory session of the World Design Summit
 
16th – 26th March 2017, CPH:DOX “Citizen Jane” film screening & panel debate – exact date tbd
 
30th March 2017, New Urban Agenda at Folketinget, Copenhagen, Denmark
 
10th – 12th May 2017, IFHP London Lab, on social and community regeneration, in London, UK
 
17th – 18th May 2017, EAROPH International Conference on “Obesity Crisis in Southeast Asia”, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
 
April 2017, Belfast UTC Campus on “The Centre City for Everyone”, in Belfast, Northern Ireland
 
mid- June 2017, WDS Pre-Summit II, in Paris, France, the second preparatory session of the World Design Summit – exact dates tbd
 
12th – 14th June 2017, Embrace the Water, Cities of the Future Conference in Gothenborg, Sweden
 
7th – 19th August 2017, IFHP Summer School, on “New Nodes of Urbanity”, in Helsinki, Turku & Tampere, Finland
 
7th – 8th September 2017, International Housing Forum, in Singapore
 
16th – 25th October 2017, World Design Summit, in Montreal, PQ, Canada
 
Stayed tuned for more information on upcoming acts of implementation on the part of IFHP in partnership with the IFHP Community.

Article by Regitze Marianne Hess
PhotoCredits: IFHP