European Dialogues

ENLIGHT European Dialogue 2022: Sustainable Cities and Communities

The 1st ENLIGHT European Dialogue took place at Uppsala University on 11-12 May 2022 around the main theme Sustainable Urban Development and closely linked to SDG 11 ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’.  The event brought together ENLIGHT external partners, academics, students and project related staff from the nine ENLIGHT regions to reflect on novel approaches to the pressing challenges facing our European regions.

The event hosted 146 participants representing external partners, academics, students and project related staff. The ENLIGHT European Dialogue began with the welcome address and official opening by Prof. Coco Norén, Pro-vice chancellor, Uppsala University and Prof. Becky Whay, Vice President International, National University of Ireland Galway.

The first keynote presentation was given by Ambassador Kim Won-soo, Board Member of the Ban-Ki Moon Centre, Current Chair of the International Advisory Board of the Future Consensus Institute and former UN Under-secretary general, he served as an advisor to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. A Korean diplomat, he has also served many different missions including as the Director General for Policy Planning and as Ambassador for Regional Cooperation at the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  Ambassador Kim Won-soo spoke on the topic of ‘Smart Citites, Small is Beautiful’ and is available to watch on the ENLIGHT YouTube channel.

The second keynote presentation was given by Dr. Fedra Vanhuyse, Head of Division – Societies, Climate and Policy Support at Stockholm Environment Institute HQ.  Dr. Vanhuyse’s role includes leading teams of sustainability researchers on the team cities, communities, and consumption; the team water, coasts and ocean; and the team environmental policy and strategy.

She is passionate about cities, food, and people, and tries to combine these topics in her research portfolio. Currently, she is investigating how cities can become climate neutral and what funding that would require in the Viable Cities’ Finance project, funded by Viable Cities. She also leads a project on circular cities, funded by the Swedish Innovation Agency Vinnova.  Dr. Vanhuysen spoke on the topic 'Sustainable Cities – the Importance of Collaboration' and this presentation can also be viewed on the ENLIGHT YouTube channel.

The final keynote was ‘The City of Uppsala: Strategic Cooperation Between Uppsala University and the City’ and was presented by Mr. Olle Bergdahl from Uppsala University.  This presentation can be watched on the ENLIGHT YouTube channel.  

As the event was themed around sustainability, the organisers strived to host the event using sustainable means, as such all meals served were vegetarian and where possible locally produced products were used, no programmes or guides were printed and no goodie bags were given.  Instead, a donation was made to a reforestation project that funded the planting of 1,200 sapling trees in Africa.

ENLIGHT European Dialogue 2022 on Sustainable Urban Development' in figures is:

  • focusing on 8 'Sustainable Urban Development' challenges linked to the 5 ENLIGHT flagship domains (‘Climate Change’, ‘Equity’, ‘Health & Well-being’, ‘Energy & Circular Economy’, and ‘Digital Revolution & Impact of Digitization’) with the contribution of 2️ outstandingly generous keynote speakers focusing on SDG 1️1 ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’ & 2️2 exceptionally dedicated expert presenters and moderators
  • 1️46 participants of which 2️2 regional & city stakeholders, 2️1 students and 1️03 university representatives
    during 2️ full conference days
  • widely accompanied and helped by 1️ creative process to connect universities with external partners: AIMday®

See what participants thought about the event in the European Dialogue After Movie 2022!


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