Urban Land Institute’s first international conference “Competitive cities: attracting human capital, investment and business” took place recently in Warsaw. The event was attended by numerous officials of Polish and foreign cities, specialists in the fields of competitiveness, development and promotion of cities and regions and over 150 developers and investors active on the Polish real estate market.
This year’s conference was on polish cities. “Poland has a lot to gain from the urban planning best practices gathered by ULI over last 78 years. How can Polish cities make sure that the environment and communities remain liveable and thriving 24 hours a day? If you are able to build denser communities with more mixed use buildings and good infrastructure, they are, at the same time, more liveable for people and have lower carbon emissions. In the end, they all help each other. To get there might take a little longer but I would also expect that especially Polish cities are experiencing a lot of growth, so I think this is the right moment to do it,” said ULI Europe CEO Lisette van Doorn.
Valentino Castellani, the former mayor of Turin, spoke about planning, urban planning and visions, and Brian Field, senior economist of the European Investment Bank took up issues of infrastructure and telecommunication. Higher education, capacities and innovations was the topic of a speech of Mike Emmerich, former president of “New Economy Manchester”. Visual identification of cities and their internationalisation were taken up by Mateu Hernández Maluquer, the president of Barcelona Global. Furthermore, Debra Mountford of OECD talked about leadership, partnership and organisation. The closing talk was given by the former mayor of Barcelona, entitled “How I made my city competitive”.
The conference was moderated by Professor Greg Clark, president of the OECD Agency for Development and Investment Strategies Forum and Senior Fellow at of ULI Europe, where he specializes in development and competitiveness issues. The conference was under the patronage of the President of Poland, Bronisław Komorowski.