Linking research to urban planning at the ICLEI World Congress 2018

June 06, 2018
One of the polluted water stream flows within Banglore city.

IDRC / Atul Loke

An IDRC delegation will join international delegates and city representatives at the ICLEI World Congress 2018 in Montreal from June 19–22.  

Organized by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, this congress, held every three years, represents a unique platform to promote IDRC’s evidence-based results and to foster collaboration and partnership in the field of urban development and climate change.

Connecting governments, international agencies, private sector industries, academics and researchers, community groups, and other international partners, the ICLEI World Congress is an opportunity to steer the global sustainable agenda and to discuss challenges faced by urban sustainability around the globe. It will focus on several strategic areas of IDRC’s climate change program, including gender, resilience, and collaborative governance.

IDRC-supported projects on urban areas adaptation and resilience-building will be showcased through active participation in four sessions.

IDRC-led session: Gender, urban development, and adaptation to climate change

When: Wednesday, June 20 | 11:00–12:30; Location: 511 Foyer BC

Rapid urbanization, migration, and climate change are among the factors that are increasingly posing a stress to urban populations and the built environment. They also exacerbate the marginalization of vulnerable groups, including women, indigenous peoples, ethnic minorities, the poor, and youth. How do we ensure that the billions of dollars dedicated to urban development result in actions that promote fair and socially equitable access to resources and economic possibilities? How do we ensure they are conducted collaboratively? This session will explore how to improve the integration and empowerment of vulnerable groups, particularly women, into urban planning and development to ensure both social equity and efficiency of action. Furthermore, the session will explore factors enabling the reproduction, scaling up, and financing of socially-transformative initiatives. 


Facilitator: Sandra Gagnon, Program Officer, IDRC Climate Change Program


  • Roshan Bajracharya, Senior Research Fellow, Southasia Institute of Advanced Studies
  • Emma E. Porio, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ateneo de Manila University
  • Rebecca Cameron, Professional Officer, Climate Change, Energy, and Resilience, ICLEI Africa
  • Danielle Labbé, Professor, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada
  • Mona Lisa Sen, Program Coordinator, Biodiversity, ICLEI South Asia

Discussant: Celestine Ketcha Courtès, Mayor of Bangangté, Cameroun, and President of the Network for Locally Elected Women of Africa

In addition, IDRC projects will be showcased in three additional sessions:

Building resilience at the local level (IDRC as panelist)

When: Wednesday, June 20  |16:00–17:30 | Location: 511 Foyer BC


The inevitability of climate change is gaining global acceptance. It is continuously being recognized that while mitigation efforts are necessary, they are not sufficient; hence there is an increasing need for global and local adaptation and resilience action. This session will focus on sharing experiences of knowledge exchange among experts and implementers who are active in the field of adaptation and resilience in Europe, Africa, South Asia, and North America. Speakers will share insights with the goal of identifying the most applicable and easily adoptable approaches to knowledge sharing.

Building up science in cities to drive action on the SDGs (IDRC as co-organizer)

When: Friday, June 22  | 10:30–12:00 | Location: 514


There is a critical need for science and research to help build solutions to the world's sustainability challenges. What is the role of science and research in elevating local actors to heights where their strength and knowledge can have ripple effects on a global scale? Early implementation of the SDGs has illustrated that countries are working to align national strategies, adapt institutional frameworks and shift policies to achieve the SDGs. However, it also illustrates that policymakers are struggling to manage and leverage goal areas and to operationalize an integrated implementation approach.

Cities and climate change: Addressing challenges and leveraging opportunities for addressing climate change (IDRC as co-organizer)

When: Friday, June 22  | 12:30–14:00 | Location: 514


Cities will be the scene of some of the greatest sustainability challenges facing humanity, due in part to climatic changes. This session will explore how science and research contribute to advancing solutions to these challenges, and it will explore opportunities for sustainability.