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Cities of integrity – innovative approaches to tackling corruption and cultivating a culture of integrity, trust and openness in urban development

February 9 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Cities of Integrity project hosts a panel discussion at the World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi, on Sunday, 9 February 2020 from 14:00 to 16:00.

Urban innovation flows from multiple actors securely, independently seeking opportunities for improvement of their livelihoods, their homes and their social fabric. Urban development that is underpinned by a culture of integrity, transparency and accountability is an essential condition minimising the risks that would otherwise block this innovation and investment. You may plan and wish for a prosperous, inclusive, equitable, resilient or sustainable city but if norms of integrity and openness are corroded by corruption none of these aspirations can be achieved. Our event will provide a platform to raise our shared understanding of the urban corruption risks at hand. We will discuss the latest facts and figures related to the major integrity challenges in urban development, their scale, scope and development over time in the cities of both the global north and south. At least equally important we will take this empirical overview as a point of departure to embark on a joint exploration of the innovative tools and approaches available to build and nurture strong cultures of integrity at the city scale. By weaving together insights and perspectives from urban planners, architects and urban policy-makers on the one side and experts and practitioners on transparency, integrity and governance we will launch an inspirational, interactive conversation around the many practical tools and innovative levers that can be activated to architect and nurture such cultures of urban integrity. Questions to explore with the audience include: what are the major ”integrity vulnerabilities” in urban development? What strategies to promote urban cultures of integrity have been found to be effective so far? What roles can the professional community of urban planners and architects play in addressing these integrity risks? What is a realistic contribution that new technologies can make beyond the hype that surrounds them? What responsibility falls to the private sector and what practical action is already coming from the business side? How can the creativity of urban place-making be harnessed? We will seek to explore these questions not just through a set of inspirational panel presentations but also by tapping into the expertise and creativity of the audience through interactive conversation formats. The aim is to provoke new thinking around these issues and plant the seeds for much needed new partnerships around urban integrity issues that harness the expertise and commitment of a diverse set of urban stakeholders.

Adi Kumar – Development Action Group, South Africa

Gilbert Siame – Centre for Urban Research and Planning, University of Zambia
Jennifer Bretana – Hivos, Philippines
Dieter Zinnbauer – African Center for Cities, South Africa and Copenhagen Business School, Denmark
Alex Warnock-Smith – Central Saint Martins, United Kingdom

WHEN: Sunday, 9 February 2020
TIME: 14:00 to 16:00
VENUE: Hall 2, Room 1, Abu Dhabi, UAE


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