This week, planners, policymakers and urban practitioners from across the world are gathering in Kuala Lumpur for World Urban Forum 9. This story is part of Next City’s coverage of the Forum. For more stories, visit our World Urban Forum 9 page here.
Each day during World Urban Forum 9, Next City is inviting attendees to visit the World Stage for conversations about the principles enshrined in the New Urban Agenda. On Sunday, Feb. 11, our speakers talked about connecting architecture to the Agenda’s principles, building smart cities for all, and creating urban spaces that make LGBT residents feel welcome.
Gallery: World Urban Forum 9, Day Five: Informal Workers and LGBT Rights
In a presentation organized by WIEGO, informal workers from Thailand described their struggles to earn a living in the face of stricter regulations and government crackdowns. "Bangkok is trying to become a global city," said Raywat Chobtham (far right), a street vendor who works in the capital. "In the government's view, that means a city where the public space is not a place to earn a living."
Sion Jones and Danilo Manzano, LGBT advocates from Ecuador, took to the World Stage to discuss how cities can ensure residents of all sexual orientations feel welcomed.
In a discussion about how architects can better connect with the principles enshrined in the New Urban Agenda, Carl Elefante, incoming president of the AIA, declared, "The fields are fertile for change. Direct engagement in your community begins with dialogue, and I think we, as a nation, have a great appetite for that. From left: Tom Dallessio, Carl Elefante, and Roger Williams.
A panel led by IHC Global, a coalition for inclusive housing and sustainable cities, discussed how smart cities can also be places of social inclusion. From left: Luisa Bravo, CitySpace Architecture; Ahmed Eiweida, The World Bank; Tom Dallessio, Next City; and Judith Hermanson, IHC Global. "It is difficult to ask all social groups to be part of the same discussion," said Bravo. "You must first build trust, and only then can you ask for cooperation. But building trust is an overwhelming, exhausting activity that many cities are simply not interested in."