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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Building Resilient Cities: Effective Dialogue and Solutions Anticipated at the GLOBE 2014 Conference

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How Resilient is Vancouver? Photo Credit Norman Ng.

Vancouver welcomes the GLOBE series, North America’s largest International Business & Sustainability Conference. The conference will be held at the Vancouver Convention Centre from March 26-28, 2014. This will be the GLOBE Group’s 13th event since 1990 that will serve as a global platform for business leaders and policy makers to discuss and further develop the business case for sustainability.

The GLOBE Group is a neutral, self-funded, not-for-profit authority on environmental business. The many programs and services provided by GLOBE reframe environmental problems into viable business opportunities. It aims to teach organizations that by embracing innovative, sustainable practice they will be more competitive. Through discussion and mutual learning, GLOBE events advance green solutions, while dispelling the myth that sustainability is uneconomical.


“Companies can do well by doing good without sacrificing the bottom line”. GLOBE Foundation


By combining business and financial executives, environmental industry practitioners, international agency representatives, government policy makers, urban leaders, design professionals and NGOs, the GLOBE series works as an incubator for creating real solutions towards a low-carbon economy.  Over 9000 participants from 58 countries attended the last GLOBE Conference in 2012 in order to meet key leaders and decision makers and learn from best practices on corporate sustainability, business growth, energy and climate change solutions and urban development. GLOBE 2014 promises a deepened discussion about new conference themes that include food and water security, ecological challenges and progress in China, community-centered Aboriginal-Business Accords and building more resilient cities.

Urban sustainability is a recurrent theme of the GLOBE series. Private and public sector urban leaders play a crucial role in creating economically, socially, and environmentally vibrant places to live and do business. However, the challenge of managing population growth and rapid urbanization, improving energy systems, funding infrastructure renewal and responding to extreme weather events has made it more difficult than ever to create and maintain sustainable cities. A resilient city is not bred of green initiatives created in silos but rather through sustainable urban management policies, programs and initiatives that address these difficulties head on.

According to Sadhu Johnston, Founder and Co-Chair of the Urban Sustainable Directors’ Network (USDN), and Deputy Manager at the City of Vancouver, there is no single definition of what makes a resilient city and no formula for how best to adapt. By bringing together the work and resources of policy makers, industry experts and urban design and planning professionals from all sectors, this conference series will allow delegates to share in the discussion, deepen their understanding of issues and contribute to real world solutions.

Municipalities are on the frontline when dealing with the many challenges facing urban sustainability, and are the key drivers of change towards responsive strategies for urban resiliency. In an effort to draw policy makers to the table, GLOBE is offering municipal staff a promotional rate of 50% off the full delegate price until March 5th. There are also discounted rates available for those interested in the one day, student, NGO or trade fair delegate pass. For more information on attending the conference click here.


Anya Paskovic is an urban planner, Vancouver flâneur and world traveller interested in public spaces, urban design and community planning. By continuously questioning the relationship between people and place – places we love, we tolerate and we ignore – Anya seeks to create functional and engaging environments that reflect community values and respect the natural environment.