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RTPI meets UN Habitat Executive Director at sustainable urbanisation conference

Representatives from the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) have met with Maimunah Mohd Sharif, the Executive Director of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN Habitat), at the 10th World Urban Forum currently taking place in Abu Dhabi.

The RTPI delegation, made up of President Sue Manns, Chief Executive Victoria Hills and International Policy and Research Officer Michele Vianello, met Ms Sharif to discuss planning and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Victoria Hills said: “It was a pleasure to meet Maimunah Mohd Sharif at the World Urban Forum and the RTPI looks forward to continued close co-operation with both her and UN Habitat in the coming months and years.

“Planners are well positioned to ensure that all can benefit from the prosperity that global urbanisation can bring and put it on a path of true sustainability - this is the challenge of the Sustainable Development Goals and in particular SDG 11 concerning cities and human settlements.”

Organised and convened by UN-Habitat, the World Urban Forum is the premier international conference on cities and global sustainable development. The focus is on achieving sustainable urbanisation globally via the implementation of UN policy, particularly SDG 11.

This year’s World Urban Forum is held under the theme Cities of Opportunities: Connecting Culture and Innovation and is exploring urban culture and technology as levers for sustainable urbanisation.

As well as meeting with Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Sue Manns is promoting UK planning and the RTPI position on key issues with a range of influential organisations including the Global Planners Network, the LEGO Foundation and United Cities and Local Governments.

A highlight will be an RTPI-led session with UK government-backed innovation agency Connected Places Catapult, looking at the potential for Plan Tech to support SDG11 with better data on land, housing and transport and with better digitally-enabled public engagement. Representatives from Malaysia, Canada and Australia will join the discussion to make Plan Tech an approach for all Commonwealth countries.

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