International Federation for Housing and Planning: Design as an Implementation Agent

International Federation for Housing and Planning: Design as an Implementation Agent

Design Declaration:

Urban Design for People takes People and Policy for Urban Design

Pleased to report on the Design Declaration and the upcoming convening in St. Etienne, France 3rd – 5th April 2019. Time to get busy and turn it from a call to action to tangible projects.

Where the design community is working together to leverage design as vehicle for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda along with the overarching UN Sustainable Development Goals.

IFHP first reported on the Design Declaration back in November 2017 [ref. “Monteal Design Declaration” in the November 2017 issue of the WUC Newsletter]. The Design Declaration having just been signed on 24 October 2017 in Montréal, in the presence of three UN agencies (UNESCOUN-HabitatUN Environment) by the fourteen international organisations and partners, including WUC: World Urban Campaign as well as WUC affiliates: UIA: International Union of Architects; IFLA: International Federation of Landscape Architects; GPN: Global Planners Network; CAP: Commonwealth Association of Planners; ASF International: Architecture Sans Frontières International and, of course IFHP.

The signing of  Design Declaration marking the launch of a global collaborative effort to utilise the potential of design for the benefit of all, and concludes: "All people deserve to live in a well-designed world."

The Design Declaration is a Call to Action, consolidating a board spectrum of design disciplines, to speak in a single voice on the value of design across the board, to get the ear of governments, educators, civil and private sectors to engage with design It is also a call to designers themselves to step into a leadership role. A call for “people for design”.

From an IFHP perspective and in terms of the built environment and the cities we need, we see sustainable design goals as part and partial to sustainable development goals, and in particular we are campaigning for the role and responsibility of urban design. But to do we need people and policy making the most of potential of urban design. So to say; Urban Design for People takes People and Policy for Urban Design.

Design Declaration Pre-Summit Meeting in Saint-Étienne, France, 3–5 April 2019

Therefor next up in advancing the Design Declaration is a Pre-Summit Meeting in Saint-Étienne, France, on 3–5 April 2019, serving as a stepping stone on a path leading to future full-scale Design Summit Meetings in 2020 and 2023.

The St. Etienne Pre-Summit Meeting will focus on the development of three key projects outlined in the Design Declaration, which were identified as highest priority by the Declaration Signatories in a recent internal survey:
Design Metrics: Establishing metrics and collecting data and case studies to more effectively communicate the value of design;
Design Education & Research: Fostering development, recognition, support and funding for design education and research, including development of new formats for design education curricula.
Government Design Policy: Supporting development of national and regional design policies;

These will be elaborated and explored in three specific sessions highlighting the Pre-Summit in St. Etienne. Project sessions will include curated keynote presentations, as well as panel and round table discussions. The results of these sessions will inform the pathway for full activation of the Projects leading to the next full-scale Summit Meeting.
Design Declaration Summit Steering Committee 
Currently six design organizations are leading the implementation of the Design Declaration

  • BEDA: Bureau of European Design Associations: Bart Ahsmann, Päivi Tahkokallio
  • Cumulus: International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media: Elsebeth Gerner Nielsen, Salmi Eija
  • IxDA: Interaction Design Association: Alok Nandi, Brenda Sanderson
  • ico-D: International Council of Design (): David Grossman, Zachary Haris Ong
  • IFHP: International Federation for Housing and Planning: Flemming Borreskov, Regitze Marianne Hess
  • IFLA: International Federation of Landscape Architects: Kathryn Moore

Advancing the Design Declaration from a call to action into tangible projects with the other entities who have already signed on in 2017, including WUC. Thank you WUC.

But now with the upcoming Pre-Summit in St. Etienne we are looking for even more to get on board. We are already very proud and pleased by the enthusiasm on the part of WUC, who will be represented in St. Etienne.

Note the Pre-Summit in St. Etienne is a closed event, by invitation only. But please let us know if your organization wants to get involved ??

Because to reiterate: “Design for People takes People for Design” and so to say in the WUC context “Urban Design for People takes People and Policy for Urban Design”.


For more on the Design Declaration and projects moving forward – please stay tuned via
Design Declaration St. Etienne Pre-Summit 3rd – 5th April 2019
For any questions please free to contact

Article by Regitze Marianne Hess
Photo Credits: International Partners of the Summit Meeting Committee