Themes for 2019


Chris Murray and Charles Landry, authors of ‘Psychology & the City: The Hidden Dimension’ have initiated a collaboration with the Heseltine Institute for Public Policy, Practice and Place and the British Council. The event is taking place at the University of Liverpool in London in 33 Finsbury Square, London, EC2A 1AG on the 27th June 2019.

We effect the city and the city affects us, yet astonishingly little is known about the impacts of urban life and its processes on the existential, emotional and psychological make-up of city-residents.

This summit aims to start a conversation between key players to address our knowledge gaps about the psychological impacts of cities. It draws on an emerging evidence and best-practice examples to compile a compendium of practical policy tools, instruments and approaches, and ultimately, to help shape a shared vision and agenda for action to humanise, human-proof and help our cities become psychologically resilient.

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The event is taking place in the historic halls of the Humboldt University in Berlin on the 20th – 21st September 2019. Highlights include the Global Summit of Government Innovation Agencies and themes 'Who is the future bureaucrat' and 'attracting new talents for tomorrow'

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Berlin, September 2018 and 1300 people are gathered for the 1st Creative Bureaucracy Festival, where speakers from 20 countries in 170 sessions were exploring how to rethink and revalue the public administration.

Subsequently in 2019 and beyond, a number of cities across Europe are holding similar events in Adelaide, Amsterdam, Bergen, Birmingham, Lisbon, Valencia and Vienna.

Why has this happened – is this a movement in the making? The answer to the ‘why’ is that the world faces a systemic crisis, which is a combination of escalating problems interacting upon each other and the need to act with urgency. The scale is clear when according to the IPCC we have 12 years to limit a climate catastrophe and when since 1970 humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles. And then globally our population is rising while our ability to sustain life on Earth is shrinking and our global food system then needs to shift as it is unsustainable, unhealthy and destabilizing. Governance systems need to react to help public bureaucracies operate in new ways.

The 1st Social Progress Cities Summit

The 1st Social Progress Cities Summit is happening in Umeå, Sweden, 17th September 2019 which I am moderating and speaking at.

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The 2nd Mobi Summit in Cascais

The 2nd Mobi Summit in Cascais near Lisbon on the 24/25th October is being co-curated by Charles

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'Bauhaus Now' conceived and curated by Chris Murray and Charles Landry is part of a collaboration with the Festival of the Future City in Bristol. It will happen on 17th October 2019.

It will both celebrate and consider how to reinvent some of the principles of the Bauhaus for our age. It asks how the Bauhaus would have evolved had it not been closed down by the Nazis. It’s multi-disciplinary approach was pioneering and we ask, who would it involve today in city making beyond architects, artists, designers and engineers? Would it have looked at the city from a 360% perspective including women, differing ethnic groups, green activists, children, psychologists, anthropologists, philosophers, historians, public sector workers and more. And what solutions may they have come up with for today’s challenges? In doing so we aim to reveal new solutions and ideas.

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The European Commission has published its proposal for Horizon Europe, an ambitious €100 billion research and innovation programme that will succeed Horizon 2020. Within this a new, forward-looking and visionary agenda is being proposed that will enhance the innovation capacity of the cities and foster a more systemic and cross-sector ‘urban ecosystem’ framework to address Europe’s urban challenges. Charles is chairing the High Level Expert Group of 10 members. It will be formally launched in the EU Research and Innovation Days on 24-26 September 2019 in Brussels with its theme: ‘The human centred city: Rights & responsibilities’.

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History tells us that without trust our social, cultural and economic system cannot work as it is the currency to make relationships and transactions work. Distrust is a global phenomenon increasingly manifesting itself at all levels across the world with fake news and the post-truth epidemic the most visible sign in politics, the media and ways of conducting business.

Trust emerged as the central issue during a project Charles was undertaking in Lviv, Ukraine, concerned with the city’s future. It was perhaps the greatest barrier for the city to progress.

The Biennale of Trust project consequently proposed by Charles was taken up by Lviv and an inspiring collection of business leaders, city council members and academics and the 1st Biennale happened in October 2018. See our programme with its mix of practical examples, reflections on trust and artistic interventions to foster trust.

We are now planning 2020 and we welcome programme ideas, partnership possibilities and sponsoring opportunities. Please contact the Biennale of Trust with your ideas and any other possible opportunities that you feel may be suitable and of interest.

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An Advanced Introduction to the Creative City

An Advanced Introduction to the Creative City will be published in the autumn by Edward Elgar publishing. This explores the trajectory of the idea from its beginnings and what the priorities now for creative action are. They substantially differ from those of the late 1980s when I proposed inserting the concept into city making.

The Creative Bureaucracy Festival. Valencia; 12th - 15th June 2019