Centre of Community and Place Governance

Story of the Month - April 2017

Urban Thinkers Campus 2.0

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The Urban Thinkers Campus is an initiative of the World Urban Campaign (WUC), an advocacy and partnership platform coordinated by the United Nations Human Settlement Programmes (UN-Habitat), to allow its many partners and networks around the world to raise awareness in developing sustainable cities. This year WUC has approved 74 Urban Thinkers Campuses around the world including the one organised by the Urban Studies Programme (URSP) at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) on 1 April 2017. This was the second time CUHK organised an Urban Thinkers Campus, and the focus of this Urban Thinkers Campus 2.0 (UTC2.0) was “Global Vision, Local Action: Aligning Hong Kong’s 2030+ with the UN New Urban Agenda”.

 

One of the main objectives of the Hong Kong UTC2.0 was to provide a platform for different stakeholders to discuss Hong Kong’s urban future and to identify areas of linkages and synergies between the HK2030+ study and the New Urban Agenda (NUA), which was adopted by the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) in Quito, Ecuador last October as a global framework to mobilise cities and regions to intentionally develop in a more sustainable, equitable and inclusive manner over the next 20 years.

 

On 1 April 2017, more than 120 participants, including students, academics, professionals, advocates and activists from green groups and other NGOs gathered at CUHK to discuss the urban future of Hong Kong. In addition to the introduction of the HK2030+ Study by Ms Phyllis Li, JP, the Deputy Director of Planning department, as well as Prof Mee Kam Ng’s presentation on the key principles of the New Urban Agenda, the participants took part in different discussions during the breakout sessions before putting forward their individual ideas and comments in the “Action and Policy Recommendation Brainstorm Session”. As a partner organisation supporting the event, our team from the IOFC Centre of Community and Place Governance were on hand to provide the following observations and reflections from the UTC 2.0:

 

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Mission Statement and Objectives

Mission Statement

The Centre of Community and Place Governance endeavours to engage the community through trans-disciplinary research and advocacy activities to realize visions of building, sharing and governing sustainable communities and places.

Objectives

  • To undertake spatial and temporal comparative social, economic, psychological and geographical studies, as well as arts and planning related advocacy activities to understand the needs, aspirations and city futures visions of members in different types of families in communities.
  • To identify through trans-disciplinary research both strengths and weaknesses of existing modes of place governance at different geographical scales within and beyond Hong Kong.
  • To invoke tools such as 'back-casting', mental health promotion and mindfulness exercises, family therapy and dynamics analysis, community arts and planning works, and to generate various sustainable pathways towards the realization of visions of future cities.
  • To provide community and place governance perspectives to the works of other Centres in IOFC.

     

Projects and Work in Progress

Main Projects

    1. Voiceless Groups in Hong Kong: identifying the spatial (re)distribution of voiceless groups in Hong Kong and synthesizing existing literature and development trends to explain the evolving spatial patterns.
    2. Nourishing a life of dignity: healthy individuals, resilient families and sustainable communities
      • Synthesizing cutting-edge knowledge on building sustainable communities, low-carbon living, social impact assessment, place-making, family communication techniques, individual 'mindfulness' and 'well-being' as well as developing different forms of socially engaged art and cultural activities that could boost social cohesiveness and creative collaborations.

      • Engaging the community through the application of the synthesized knowledge for two key purposes:

      • to build the capacity of the communities in building sustainable families, communities and places

      • to sharpen and fine-tune the research team's understanding of the synthesized knowledge

    3. IF POSS: Community, Well-being, Place-Making & Urban Regeneration at the Neigbhourhood Level: A Comparative Study of Hong Kong and Tainan: This project aims to undertake a comparative study in Hong Kong and Tainan to examine people's views on their communities, their own well-being and more humanistic and sustainable ways of rejuvenating their neighbourhoods. The following captures the related objectives:
      • To compare and contrast the evolution of the concept of 'communities' in Hong Kong and Taiwan

      • To compare and contrast the socio-economic, cultural and political contexts of the two cities as well as their institutional frameworks to ascertain the rights of various stakeholders in the two places

      • To examine people's views on their communities

      • To critically evaluate the concept & practice of 'commons' in local communities

      • To explore the impacts of their perceptions and practices in place on their subjective well-being

      • To ascertain the desirability & possibility of alternative means of urban regeneration

Work in Progress

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Investigators

Director:

Prof. Mee Kam NG

Members:

o Dr. CHEN Huiwei
o Prof. Murat ES
o Prof. Michelle Tsung Yi HUANG
o Dr. Joanna Wai Ying LEE
o Prof. Winnie W. S. MAK
o Prof. Hendrik TIEBEN
o Prof. Yuying TONG
o Ms. Carman Lai-moy WONG
o Prof. Kaming WU
o Prof. Mary Hui-quan ZHOU
o Mr. ZHU Jiageng