AIPH, in collaboration with the Worshipful Company of Gardeners, proudly presents Green City Briefings 2022/23, sponsored by Expo 2023 Doha, Qatar. This year it is even more global, featuring cities around the world that demonstrate significant progress in including plants and nature in their city’s form and function.
Each one-hour webinar will start with a presentation by an expert describing the principles that explain how urban greening benefits the city, its residents, and nature. The second presentation will be from a city demonstrating how the practice creates transformational change. Facilitated by a fellow leader on the topic there will be discussion structured around submitted questions. This provides experts from around the world the opportunity to showcase and connect knowledge to practice.
Last year the City of London Green City Briefings saw attendees from 50 different countries join AIPH’s series and we hope to see a similar level of inspiration and knowledge sharing this year. The previous eight Green City Briefings webinars presented compelling evidence and examples of the power of ‘living green’ in delivering multiple solutions to city challenges.
In a unique development to the online format, we invite audience members to submit questions and begin discussion on the AIPH Global Green City Forum: A virtual space dedicated to driving transformative change in cities by harnessing the power of plants and nature. The AIPH Global Green City Forum is an online community for all individuals with an interest in learning, sharing, and inspiring a global movement for greener, healthier, and more sustainable cities. Here you can post questions to speakers and join the discussion ahead of each webinar. All the webinar recordings will be available to access on this free platform. AIPH warmly invites you to join the AIPH Global Green City Forum
AIPH also invites you to subscribe to receive the monthly AIPH Global Green City Update direct to your inbox. This monthly mailing comprises the latest news and events, best practice and case studies, policy and green city principles, and research findings from around the world. Subscribing to the AIPH Global Green City Update will ensure that you never miss an announcement regarding the 2022/2023 Green City briefings. Stay up to date with all things Green City by subscribing today!
The April briefing features the winner of Category Living Green for Biodiversity category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022: Bogotá, Colombia
City biodiversity has an increasingly important role to play in global conservation efforts. Cities have a role in providing habitats to support ecological communities for a diverse range of living organisms. Plants provide the backbone for all nature to thrive. This webinar explores how understanding the ecology and encouraging biodiversity in a city benefits both people and nature.
“The greening of Bogotá” is a public policy included in the District Development Plan 2020-2024: “A New Social and Environmental Contract for the Bogotá of the 21st Century”. Its purpose is to improve the quality of the natural, built and regional environment from the perspective of generating well-being conditions for the population and other living beings present in the territory. Agro-ecological urban and peri-urban agriculture takes on special importance as it involves more than 120 plant species in orchards, including fruit trees, shrubs, vines, and even small plants. In 2020, this Urban Agriculture Program gained strength and prominence, resulting in more than 5,000 fortified vegetable gardens.
The March briefing features the winner of the ‘Living green for social cohesion’ category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022: Paris, France.
Greener environments encourage people to spend more time in outdoor spaces, improving social interaction and community cohesion which in turn contributes to reduced crime.
This webinar showcases the role of schoolyards in becoming transformative spaces for climate ready cities with cohesive communities. The Oasis Schoolyard’s project, launched in 2018, and, supported by the City of Paris, seeks to transform existing outdoor spaces through renewing and greening all 770 schoolyards by 2050. The project responds simultaneously to multiple urban issues such as thermal conditions, lack of green areas within the city, and the design of appropriate public spaces for children growing up in the city. This includes an active work in community cohesion improvement, which is achieved by providing the local community with free access to the schoolyards on Saturdays. By December 2021, 72 schoolyards had been transformed.
Photos by CAUE de Paris
MC: Dominic Regester
Dominic Regester is Director of Education and Director of the Center for Education Transformation at Salzburg Global Seminar, where he is responsible for designing, developing and implementing programs on the futures of education, with a particular focus on social and emotional learning, education leadership, regenerative education, and education transformation. He works on a broad range of projects across education policy, practice, transformation, and international development, including as a Director at the Amal Alliance and as a Senior Editor for Diplomatic Courier. Since 2021 he has also served as the Executive Director of Karanga: the Global Alliance for Social Emotional Learning and Life Skills.
Sr. Program Manager – Evergreen (Canada)
Heidi is a design professional and educator who specialises in participatory planning and design approaches for healthy, inclusive neighbourhoods. She leads iterative placemaking processes that engage the public in realising vibrant, resilient spaces for their communities.
Raphaëlle Thiollier graduated from a political institute, she has worked for the City of Paris since 2009. Passionate about education, nature and ecological transition, Raphaëlle was a member of the Parisian Resilience team, and is now a service designer on school architecture as well as the Oasis Schoolyards Project Manager.
The February briefing features the winner of the ‘Living Green for Water’ category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022: Montréal, Canada.
In urban environment’s water plays a key role in both risk and necessity. From flood risk through to clean drinking water, how water is managed in cities is becoming an ever pressing matter.
This webinar showcases the latest research in integrating green solutions into water management, from beautiful multifunctional green spaces for reduced flooding through to changing how to respond to contaminated land. Montréal Botanical Garden’s latest project includes the creation of a phytotechnology station focused on how different plant species can be used to extract or degrade certain contaminants from soil excavated during construction works.
The webinar also addresses the integration of blue nature-based-solutions with reference to the Natural England Green Infrastructure Framework which was launched on 31st January 2023. Gary Grant is lead author of this guidance document.
MC: Tim Badman
Tim Badman is Head of the Heritage, Culture and Youth Team in IUCN (the International Union for Conservation of Nature), which hosts IUCN’s Urban Initiative. He previously served as Director of the IUCN World Heritage Programme since 2009 and Director of the IUCN Nature-Culture Initiative in 2019-2020. He is chair of the IUCN World Heritage Panel and heads IUCN’s delegation at World Heritage Committee meetings. Tim has a background in local government, working on environmental and coastal policy and programmes. He joined IUCN having worked as team leader of the Dorset and East Devon Coast World Heritage Site, UK, and Environment Policy lead for Dorset County Council.
Gary Grant is Technical Director at the Green Infrastructure Consultancy, Chartered Environmentalist, Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management, visiting lecturer at the Bartlett, UCL and Dept. of Landscape Architecture, University of Sheffield and Fellow of the Leeds Sustainability Institute. He is author of Green Roofs and Facades (BRE Press 2006), Ecosystem Services Come to Town – Greening cities by working with nature (Wiley 2012) and The Water Sensitive City (Wiley 2016). Projects include the Swansea City Centre Green Infrastructure Strategy, Grosvenor Square renewal, London Olympic Park Masterplan and Biodiversity Action Plan, Whitehill-Bordon Eco Town, the Natural History Museum Wildlife Garden, Education City, Qatar and Saadiyat Island Masterplan, Abu Dhabi. He has been involved in the planning, design, installation and maintenance of hundreds of urban greening projects, including green roofs, green walls, rain gardens and other interventions.
Joan Laur is employed by the Research and Development Division of the Montréal Botanical Garden as Scientific Director of the Pathway to Phytotechnology major initiative and in charge of the platform associated with at the IRBV of the University of Montréal where she is an associate professor since 2021, leading a team of 12 graduate students and postdoc fellows. Her work has been awarded several times (Faculty of 1000, Carl Douglas inaugural price, Louis Berlinguet Rising star award) for her collaborative, innovative and original approaches in molecular biology, plant physiology and for the use of omics technologies.
The December briefing features the winner of the ‘Living Green for Climate Change’ category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022: Mexico City, Mexico.
As climate change increases pressure and challenges for cities worldwide, this session focuses on strategies that promote the power of plants in creating adapted and resilient urban environments.
Mexico City has been inspired to sow parks for its citizens, native wildlife and future generations. Thanks to the Green Challenge, the increase in the annual production of plants went from less than 500 thousand in 2018 to more than 10 million in 2021, which has resulted in the planting of over 34,000,000 trees and plants. Read the full case study.
Continue the conversation via the AIPH Global Green City Forum.
Photos courtesy of SEDEMA
MC: Katharina Metz
Dr. Katharina Metz is an editor at the communications agency EINSATEAM and lives in Berlin. She works as content and community manager for the online learning platform use: urban sustainability exchange, which provides practical resources and promotes knowledge exchange for urban practitioners and researchers worldwide. Before pursuing a professional interest in the field of knowledge transfer, Katharina earned her doctorate in North American Studies at Freie Universität Berlin.
Dr Mario Balzan is an applied ecologist with a multidisciplinary background in environmental sciences. His research aims to improve our understanding of human impacts on biodiversity and the contributions of biodiversity and ecosystem services to human well-being. Dr Balzan is the founder of Ecostack Innovations and has been the coordinator of the ReNature Horizon 2020 project, which has established a strategy to promote research and innovation for nature-based solutions that improve human well-being in Malta.
Valder Pliego del Ángel
Valder Pliego del Ángel has a degree in Political Science and Public Administration from the National Autonomous University of Mexico, as well as a Law degree. He has specialized in areas related to Environmental Law and environmental public policies. Within the public sector, he has worked in areas such as the Sub-Prosecutor for Legal Affairs of the Environmental Prosecutor and Territorial Planning of Mexico City and the Secretariat of the Environment in the capital. He currently works as an Advisor at the Mexico City Environment Secretariat, where he has coordinated and monitored various projects related to the city’s revegetation strategy, among other topics.
November’s briefing features the Grand Winner of the inaugural AIPH World Green City Awards: Hyderabad, India.
Their initiative titled ‘Green Garland to the State of Telangana’ also won the Living Green for Economic Recovery and Inclusive Growth’ category.
This city’s world leading program has exemplified the power of plants to support better urban environments. With remarkable parks, plantations, and lakes this session focuses on the incredible work occurring in Hyderabad and globally to harness the opportunities found in innovative urban design.
Hyderabad‘s flagship program has inspired large-scale tree-planting by the Government of Telangana. Learn more about the program that was established with the aim of increasing the tree cover of the State from the current 24% to 33% of its total geographical area. Learn how they surpassed even this ambitious goal through their initiative.
Images courtesy of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC).
MC: Bill Hardy, Chair of the AIPH Green City Committee
Bill has had many roles and responsibilities within the horticulture industry over the years and has always had an avid involvement in industry professional development, education, and certification.
Bill is active with several industry associations including: the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association – Communication Director and 2nd Vice President; HortEducationBC – Founding Director and current Business Manager; Canadian Garden Council – Founding Director and CNLA Representative; International Association of Horticulture Producers – Chair Green City Committee; and the Green Cities Foundation – Director at Large
Bishop Ngobeli, Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo
Manager: Protected Areas and Enforcement at Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo, Founder of Association of Parks and Recreation Africa. World Urban Parks Board Member and Chair the Africa Region under World Urban Parks, National Forestry Advisory Committee (South Africa), South Africa Council for Natural Scientific Profession Advisor Council.
Bishop Ngobeli is interested in advocating for Parks for All and Greening of Africa. To see every kid in Africa to have a park in the communities and have a liveable green community. We need to continue developing open spaces for our communities and greening programs will provide benefits far reaching beyond health, and wellbeing. Let’s give future generations access to the best quality, vibrant and equitable open spaces.
Arvind Kumar IAS, Special Chief Secretary, Municipal Administration & Urban Development Department, Government of Telangana
Mr. Arvind Kumar is a graduate in Economics and a post-graduate in management (MBA) from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA). He has done Masters in Public Policy (MPP) from Woodrow Wilson School (WWS), Princeton University, USA as Robert McNarama Scholar and a course on Leadership & Globalization from LSE London, UK as a Chevening Scholar. He has been in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) since 1991 and has worked in various capacities at the State level for over two decades which include, inter alia, carrying out all development and welfare work, on behalf of the State Government in two Districts and municipal city CEO in two cities.
From 2009-2014, Mr. Kumar worked with the Government of India as Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and managed insurance and pension reforms, institutional finance including housing, MSME, microfinance, agriculture & rural credit. Mr. Kumar has been a Government nominee Director on the Boards of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), ICICI Bank Ltd, the New India Assurance Company Limited (NIACL), Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), IFCI Ltd and National Housing Bank (NHB) and IRDA among others during this period.
Mr. Kumar moved back to the State Government of Telangana in January, 2015 and worked as the Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce, and Energy Departments. The New Industrial Policy was launched by the State in June, 2015.
Mr. Kumar is presently working as the Special Chief Secretary, Municipal Administration and Urban Development and Commissioner, Information and Public Relations Departments of the Government of Telangana.
October’s briefing is focused on design and plant selection for challenging climates, featuring Doha in Qatar and the upcoming Expo 2023 Doha landscape.
Techniques that enable the sustainable cultivation of trees and crops in arid lands play an important role in reversing desertification problems evident around the world.
The theme of Expo 2023 Doha is ‘Green Desert, Better Environment’. The Expo aims to draw attention to the threats of desertification and the potential solutions that can be employed.
MC – Mark Laurence
Mark is a horticulturalist, consulting arborist and landscape designer with a particular interest in adapting landscapes to climate change, restoring ecosystem function and finding psychological and material comfort from design of good space.
A speaker and thinker on these matters, currently researching material for a book on adaptive and regenerative landscapes, human psychology and spirit in the face of climate change and responsive design approaches.
Francesco is an enthusiastic designer and photographer; he graduated in Architecture at Politecnico of Milan in 2014 and immediately started a career as Landscape Masterplanner in Milan first and then London.
Over the past ten years he has worked for international and multidisciplinary companies such as Stefano Boeri Architetti, LAND Milan, GUILLESPIES and now Dar London.
As a designer, he has always been fascinated by Middle East; by its culture, its dramatic landscapes, harsh climate and resilient cities. At Dar he learned how to design in challenging environments, leveraging their natural assets even when they seemed invisible.
Harry Watkins is the Executive Director for St Andrews Botanic Garden in Fife, Scotland. The garden is a living research and conservation experiment where staff explore the ways ecology and evolution unfold in the plant kingdom.
The first AIPH Green City Briefings 2022 -23 featured Buenos Aires – a finalist in the Living Green for Social Cohesion category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022. See all 18 Finalists
The session focussed on how habitat conservation strategies are integrated into urban development with a particular focus on human and habitat vulnerabilities.
Buenos Aires is the host city for the C40 Summit. In its commitment to climate solutions, Buenos Aires has committed to halving its carbon emissions by 2030 and going fully carbon neutral by 2050. The briefing focused on how Buenos Aires has accelerated its contribution to a better future for all through innovative action that focuses on the integration of nature conservation in inclusive city planning. It demonstrates how greening operates in synergy with other city initiatives, and how conservation strategies are integrated into urban development with a particular focus on participatory and associative co-management that addresses vulnerabilities.
Photos provided by Buenos Aires for their entry to the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022
MC Dr. Heather Barrett-Mold
Heather is a Chartered Scientist, Horticulturist, and Environmentalist. Currently a consultant. Heather is an ecologist/ environmental scientist. She was Principal/CEO of Pershore Group of Colleges. She was a member of the Government Advisory Panel on Sustainable Development Education for its lifetime of 5 years, and Advisor on the Secretary of State Sounding Board. Heather was an expert with the Commission for Sustainable London 2012, and Secretary of State Board member for the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. She is a Fellow of the Linnaean Society, Vice President of the Institution of Environmental Science, and Past President of the Institute of Horticulture and was Chair of the Science Council.
Gabriel is the President of the Housing institute since march 2021. He also was the General Manager of the organization between 2020 and 2021.
Gabriel has a robust experience in the public sector. He led the Planning and Monitoring area of the Human Development and Habitat of the City Government of Buenos Aires. He also was National Director of Crime Prevention and Violence at the National Security Ministry, and, within the political platform, he was candidate for the National Congress.
He has a Political Science Degree and a Master in Public Administration from San Andrés University. He was professor at the Moreno University for four years.
Delfina is Architect from Buenos Aires University. She has worked at the City Government of Buenos Aires since 2016 in areas that lead social and urban integration Programs for vulnerable neighbourhoods. In this regard, Delfina worked at the housing improvements department of the Social and Urban Integration Secretary. Then, she led the Operational area of Urban Renewal. Since 2020, she leads the Housing Development area, focusing on urban and architectural developing projects, developing infrastructure, demolitions for opening streets and housing improvements, among others.
Nathalie Nunes is a French and Portuguese researcher at the Centre for Social Studies of the University of Coimbra, member of the co-coordination team of the H2020 project URBiNAT. PhD candidate in sociology of law, she graduated in international and European law, and gained international experience in Cape Verde and Brazil. She collaborated with organizations promoting and defending human rights, children’s rights, and the environment. For the Green City Briefings, she will present the development of guidelines for citizen engagement and the co-creation of nature-based solutions in the URBiNAT project.