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Relating the Ecocity World Summit 2019 conference themes to the International Ecocity Standards

Written by Jennie Moore

Work is underway to shape the program for the upcoming Ecocity World Summit to be held in Vancouver, Canada from October 7 to 11, 2019.

The overarching conference theme is “socially just and ecologically sustainable cities” with three sub-themes addressing:

  • climate action
  • circular economy
  • informal solutions for sustainable development

The conference structure will be based on the International Ecocity Standards ( There are 18 standards grouped into four pillars that describe the conditions of an ecocity. These pillars will comprise the four concurrent tracks for the conference as follows:

  1. URBAN DESIGN – this track addresses conditions in the built environment including land use considerations to provide “access by proximity” to work, housing, services, and nature. It also addresses “access to safe and affordable housing,” “green buildings,” and “environmentally friendly transport.”
  2. BIO-GEOPHYISCAL CONDITIONS – this track addresses conditions at the interface between the natural and built environment such as “clean air and atmosphere,” “healthy and safe water,” “clean and renewable energy,” “responsible materials,” “healthy soils,” and “access to healthy and nutritious food.”
  3. SOCIO-CULTURAL FEATURES – this track addresses conditions in society such as “healthy culture,” “governance and community capacity,” “equitable economy,” “life-long education,” “health and well-being.”
  4. ECOLOGICAL IMPERATIVES – this track addresses conditions in global and local ecosystems such as “healthy biodiversity,” “ecological carrying capacity,” and “ecological integrity.”

The first two days of the conference (Oct. 7-8) provide space for workshops, training, field trips and academic papers on topics tied to the conference themes and ecocity standards.

Each day of the main conference program event (Oct. 9-11) will focus on a different aspect of the conference themes as follows:

October 9, 2018 – Urban design and physical environment including built environment and bio-geophysical conditions with emphasis on the climate action sub-theme.

October 10, 2018 – Social justice, including healthy culture, equitable economy, governance and community capacity with emphasis on the circular economy and informal solutions for sustainable development sub-themes.

October 11, 2018 – Ecological sustainability, including ecological integrity, biodiversity, carrying capacity with emphasis on the main theme of socially just and ecologically sustainable cities.

The first call for proposals for both academic papers and posters as well as for other conference activities including convening of workshops and special panel presentations will open in September 2018. To stay informed and up-to-date on conference related activities, please visit the conference website: and click on “stay connected” to sign-up to receive announcements and updates.

I look forward to seeing you in Vancouver for Ecocity World Summit 2019.

About the author

Jennie Moore

Dr. Jennie Moore is Director, Institute Sustainability at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Dr. Moore has extensive experience in the realm of ecological sustainability and urban systems including climate change and energy management, green buildings and eco-industrial networking. Prior to joining BCIT she worked for over a decade at Metro Vancouver as Manager of Strategic Initiatives. Her research explores the potential for Vancouver to achieve one-planet living. Jennie is a senior associate of the One Earth Initiative and a core advisor to the International Ecocity Framework and Standards.