World Cities (2)

The Future of World Cities (2)

Festival of the Future City


Please note: This event took place in Nov 2015

This is our second session on the issues facing world cities today and the lessons to be learnt for future planning. The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP talks about the government's vision for cities. Novelist Elif Shafak looks at Istanbul; novelist and writer Rana Dasgupta - author most recently of Capital: A Portrait of Twenty-first Century Delhi - looks at Delhi; Mathieu Lefevre, Executive Director of the New Cities Foundation, looks at Middle Eastern cities; Gabriella Goméz-Mont (Mexico City Lab) looks at Mexico; and Justin McGuirk - author of Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture - looks at Latin American cities.

NB There will be a short interval during this session.

Speaker biographies:

The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP was appointed Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government in May 2015. Previously, he was appointed Minister of State in October 2013 and Minister for Universities and Science in July 2014. From March 2001, he was Director of Policy for the Conservative Party, before being elected as Conservative MP for Tunbridge Wells in 2005. He was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change in October 2008, having previously been Shadow Minister for Charities, Social Enterprises and Volunteering, and then took up the position of Minister of State at Communities and Local Government, with responsibilities for decentralisation and planning policy.

Rana Dasgupta is a novelist and essayist. He won the 2010 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book for his debut novel Solo. He is also the author of a collection of urban folktales, Tokyo Cancelled, which was short-listed for the 2005 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize. Capital: A Portrait of Twenty-First-Century Delhi,his first work of non-fiction, explored Dehli's story of capitalist transformation.

Gabriella Gómez-Mont is the director of Laboratorio para la Ciudad, a creative think-tank and experimental space based in Mexico City. As the first government office of its kind in Latin America, Laboratorio's main focus is civic innovation and urban creativity, furthering collaboration among civil society, academia and the private sector. She also created Tóxico Cultura, a multidisciplinary think-tank where artists, filmmakers, photographers and writers come together to discuss and present their work amid cultural workshops, lectures, exhibitions and film screenings. In addition she is a documentary filmmaker, writer and curator.

Mathieu Lefevre has been the Executive Director of the New Cities Foundation since it was created in 2010. He has led projects on e-health with the City of Rio, GE and Cisco and on connected commuting with Ericsson and Waze in the city of San Jose, California. He played a key role in the design of the Foundation's events including the New Cities Summit, Cityquest and Cities on the Move and Fellowship programs. Previously, he worked for the World Bank in the area of governance and as a political officer for the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations.

Justin McGuirk is an award-winning journalist and critic whose writings on design culture range from the architecture of Palestinian refugee camps to the design of electric shavers. He was formerly the editor of Icon, the international architecture and design magazine and is a regular commentator on design issues for national newspapers and the broadcast media. In 2012 he was awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture for an exhibition he curated with Urban Think Tank. Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture, in which he discovers the people and ideas shaping the way cities are evolving, was published in 2014.

Elif Shafak is an award-winning novelist and the most widely read woman writer in Turkey. She writes fiction in both Turkish and English. She is also an active political commentator, columnist and public speaker. She is a regular contributor to major newspapers in Turkey and has been featured in major newspapers and periodicals, including the Washington Times, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, The Economist and the Guardian. She has taught at various universities in Turkey, UK and USA. She holds a Masters degree in Gender and Women's Studies and a PhD in Political Science.

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