Envisioning a Different Kind of Urbanization
Rob Garris

Rob Garris Former Managing Director, Bellagio Study and Conference Center

August 27, 2013

Envisioning a Different Kind of Urbanization

Rob Garris

Rob Garris Former Managing Director, Bellagio Study and Conference Center

August 27, 2013

Leading figures from governments, civil society, and corporations from around the globe are gathering at the Foundation’s Bellagio Center on Lake Como, Italy today to imagine a different kind of future for the world’s cities. We’re calling the series “Visionaries Unbound,” and are excited to team up with The Economist Group with input from the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Urban Research, and Forum for the Future. This group is tasked with envisioning a different kind of urbanization, one that can accommodate the estimated two billion people who will move to cities in coming decades, and do so in ways that build equitable and resilient cities.

We’ve also just launched the Visionaries Unbound digital hub where you’ll find a series of articles, videos and events that offer compelling insights and activities across sectors on building a more resilient and equitable world. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter at #TransformCities.

“We’re calling on leading figures from around the globe to envision a different kind of urbanization.”

The August convening will be the first in a series of four on the future of transforming cities, revaluing ecosystems, advancing health, and securing livelihoods, reflecting the key, integrated role the Bellagio Center is playing in the Rockefeller Foundation’s global strategy. This Bellagio Series on the Foundation’s strategic issue areas will serve as the anchor of our core focus on these themes in the Center’s conference and residency programs.

Bellagio will, as it always has, host a diverse array of conferences and resident fellows working on a wide variety of topics in the arts, humanities, social science and science relevant to the Foundation’s pioneering 1913 mission to promote human well being. But we will also support—and initiate—a steady stream of work on cities, ecosystems, health systems and livelihoods, generating a body of knowledge, alliances, and actions for a global community of the Foundation’s partners and peers seeking to promote equity and resilience in these fields.

“The Bellagio Center is plays a key integrated role in The Rockefeller Foundation’s global strategy.”

Already this year we have hosted projects, to name just a few, to catalyze investment in sustainable infrastructure; to shape the UN’s post-2015 urban development goals, to document, through art photography, the lives of women and girls in Rajasthani villages, and to make universal health coverage a global reality.

The multidisciplinary and intercultural exchange that has made the Bellagio Center a source of new ideas for more than 50 years promises to take on a renewed sense of energy as the Center renews its commitment to promote human well being, in our core issue areas and across all fields of human endeavor.

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