Academic journal article The Town Planning Review

Urban Regeneration: New Model and New Practice: The Eighth Annual International Association for China Planning Conference, Guangzhou, China, 21-22 June 2014

Academic journal article The Town Planning Review

Urban Regeneration: New Model and New Practice: The Eighth Annual International Association for China Planning Conference, Guangzhou, China, 21-22 June 2014

Article excerpt

During the past decades, urbanisation in China has centred on land development through industrialisation and investment, but it has largely ignored the prosperity and well-being of the people.

Liveable cities are not just those with magnificent buildings and infrastructure; they are great places where people want to live. China's recently inaugurated leaders have proposed a new model to actively and prudently enhance the quality of urbanisation through compact, intelligent, and low-carbon development. It symbolises the departure from land-centred urban development to a form of people-oriented urbanisation, as China's Premier, Li Keqiang, has advocated. Quality of life should be one of the key goals for the new model of urbanisation.

This new model offers a platform for planning researchers and practitioners to tackle urbanisation challenges, such as social equity, environment, energy, ecological and historic preservation, affordable housing, and externalities of mega cities. Further, a people-oriented urbanisation approach calls for public participation and stakeholder engagement in the planning process.

The eighth annual conference of the International Association for China Planning (IACP) was held in Guangzhou, China, 21-22 June 2014. It was organised by IACP and South China University of Technology (SCUT), co-organised by the Guangdong Urban & Rural Planning and Design Institute, Guangzhou KEY CITY Planning & Survey Technological Co. Ltd., Guangzhou Teamzero Architecture and Planning Co. Ltd., Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Peking University-Lincoln Institute Center (PLC) for Urban Development and Land Policy, and Ohio State University. It was also sponsored by the American Planning Association (APA), Case Studies on Transport Policy, Springer, Travel Behaviour & Society, and the Urban Planning Society of China.

The conference brought together more than 250 planning scholars and practitioners from around the world, including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Singapore, Australia, the United States , Canada, Great Britain, Spain, Belgium, Netherlands, Turkey, India, and Ghana, among others. During the conference, 169 papers were presented across 36 parallel sessions, as well as six keynote presentations. The conference also included the second Dean's Forum on urban planning.

Opening session

The conference had an opening ceremony on 21 June (Figure 1), with IACP Chair Qisheng Pan (Texas Southern University) and Dean Yimin Sun, the Executive Deputy Dean of the School of Architecture at SCUT, co-presiding. Academician Jingtang He (SCUT) welcomed all those attendees and delivered introductory remarks on China's urban planning and design process. Qisheng Pan greeted the conference delegates, reviewed IACP's history and missions, addressed the conference theme and objectives, and also introduced keynote speakers and distinguished guests. Yimin Sun also gave the audience a warm welcome and introduced the diverse academic offerings and outstanding research accomplishments of the School of Architecture, SCUT. Two internationally renowned scholars and one chief planner were each invited to give a keynote speech at the opening session.

Professor Robert Bullard (Texas Southern University) delivered the first keynote speech of the conference, entitled 'Environmental and sustainability challenges in the United States and China: assessing impacts using an equity lens'. As one of the pioneers addressing environmental equity issues and the father of environmental justice, Bullard examined environmental challenges in the United States using a social equity lens. He also assessed the efficacy of using such a frame in order to understand the growing environmental and sustainability challenges in China. Bullard argued that millions of Americans continue to live in unsafe and unhealthy physical environments, despite significant improvements in environmental protection over the past few decades. …

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