Urban Age Conference Addis Ababa, November 29, 2018

17th Urban Age conference

In November, first results of Urban Age Africa will be presented and discussed during the Urban Age conference 2018 in Addis Abeba.

Continuing population growth and urbanisation will add 2.5 billion people to the world’s urban population by 2050, with nearly 90 per cent of the increase concentrated in Asia and Africa.

In the context of “Urban Age Africa”, LSE Cities at the London School of Economics and the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft jointly organize this year’s Urban Age conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. In November, “Developing Urban Futures”, will focus on the development of cities in rapidly urbanising countries, like for example in many African metropolises. Already today, around 40 per cent of Africans are urban dwellers, about 500 million people, but in the next few decades this number will swell to over 1.4 billion.

The decisions taken now will affect generations of urban dwellers well into the 21st century, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, the development of cities here is only minimally embedded in a reconfiguration of economies and geographies of production and industrialisation, as was the case in China and East Asia. Holding the conference in Addis Ababa considers the city as both a relevant and an exceptional case study in understanding trajectories of urban development. Like many other cities on the African continent, it has witnessed a remarkable transformation in recent decades. Addis Ababa’s urban development is a demonstration of the national government’s unprecedented commitment to plan and transform the city through investments in transport, infrastructure, housing and real estate, combined with policies that target the economic bases and spatial organisation of urbanisation.

By convening urban experts, policymakers and practitioners from Sub-Saharan Africa and other world cities, the conference will raise questions about the economic foundations of urban change and investigate how current models of planning and governance succeed or achieve greater integration between efficiency, accessibility and social justice. Discussions will be structured around the following interlinked policy issues: economic development, productivity and urban form; housing and social inclusion; urban accessibility, transport and technology; and urban governance and infrastructure development.

Participants can register their interest in attending here: https://urbanage.lsecities.net/conferences/developing-urban-futures-addis-ababa-2018 (Within the selection process invitations will follow personally)

This will be the seventeenth Urban Age conference organised since 2005, most recently in Delhi, the Venice Biennale, Hong Kong, Rio de Janeiro and London.

Urban Age Africa Conference Travel Grant for students

To enable the participation of students, the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft is offering five travel grants. They cover, in addition to participation in the conference, flights to and from Addis Adaba as well as a guided tour of the city and a follow-up event in Berlin in 2019.

The selection will be based on a CV, a letter of motivation and an essay contest.

The contest is open to university students in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein at all levels (Bachelor - PhD) and from all disciplines, as long as a significant interest in urban development can be demonstrated.

For further details, please refer to this pdf