London has won a bid to host the biennial Ecocity World Summit in June 2023. First held in 1990, Ecocity World Summit is described as the pioneer global conference on sustainable cities. Every two years it brings together urban stakeholders from across the globe to focus on key actions cities and citizens can take to rebuild human habitat in balance with living systems.
The hybrid physical-virtual summit will take place 6-8 June 2023 at the Barbican Centre. It will convene representatives from communities across the city from schools, academia and professionals to investors, trade associations and political leaders, to share new thinking and maintain the energy and momentum generated by COP26. The London Festival of Architecture will provide a month-long backdrop with activation across the city throughout the month of June.
The bid to host the summit was supported by the UK government, mayor of London, London councils, City of London Corporation, Transport for London, UK Green Building Council, Royal Town Planning Institute, Green Finance Institute and Bartlett Faculty of Built Environment, UCL.
It was led by New London Architecture (NLA) in partnership with London & Partners, the Barbican Centre and professional conference organisers MCI. Summit director, NLA’s Amy Chadwick Till, will lead a programme committee of industry experts to shape and deliver the programme.
Sadiq Khan, mayor of London, said: “It’s fantastic news that London will be the host city for the Ecocity World Summit 2023. It has been great to see sustainability at the top of the global agenda in the wake of the COP26 summit, and the Ecocity conference in London will continue the sustainability conversation by bringing together business, political and community leaders from all over the world.
“Global cities have a big role to play in tackling climate change and environmental issues. London has shown its leadership by committing to a Green New Deal to help London become greener and fairer – creating new jobs and skills for Londoners and ensuring London becomes a net zero-carbon city by 2030 and a zerowaste city by 2050. As the new chair of C40 Cities, I am working with other mayors and cities across the world to share ideas and collaborate, and conferences like Ecocity World Summit will help to enhance global cooperation.”
Amy Chadwick Till, director of Ecocity World Summit 2023, said: “Past Ecocity summits have an amazing track-record of enabling tangible local action; I am excited about the opportunity for our London summit partners to drive local change. By facilitating global knowledge sharing and highlighting new thinking, projects, and policies frameworks from around the world, we can offer inspiration and tools for cities to deliver on global needs. Design workshops that tackle real-world briefs, a virtual offer that connects in cities with fewer resources, and city activation through the festival in June will, I hope, leave a powerful positive legacy beyond the three-day summit itself.”
Kirstin Miller, executive director, Ecocity Builders, said: “Ecocity Builders is delighted to welcome London as host of Ecocity 2023. Their winning bid, and its ambition to connect communities, ticked all our boxes. There was a clear understanding of cities as complex systems with multidisciplinary actors and sectors. More than that, we saw a level-headed approach to networking them all together to achieve ambitious goals and better outcomes.
“There is a lot we can learn from London, and, I think, a lot we can share as well. The most successful cities and neighbourhood are going to be those who figure out how to effectively collaborate and execute their plans. The London bid acknowledges this by embracing complexity and creativity at the core of change.”
Georgia Gould, chair of London Councils, said: “The Ecocity Summit will provide an opportunity for London’s boroughs to showcase the work we are doing with our communities to deliver a more sustainable city to an international audience. Boroughs are keen to collaborate with global innovators and investors and learn from cities across the world to drive forward our objective of bringing down London’s carbon emissions to net zero in an inclusive and sustainable way.”