Smart City Collaboration in Preparation for the World Urban Forum  

Collaboration in Preparation for the World Urban Forum

Americas, DIAUD Network, November 15 2017

On November 1, 2017, the DIAUD Network held another successful meeting in preparation for the 9th  World Urban Forum (WUF9), which will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia next February.  Members provided information about their planned representation and contributions at the Forum and were also able to collaborate in planning logistics for various events and meetings that will be taking place. The discussion was led by Federico Batista Poitier, Executive Assistant to the President and Communications Coordinator for Global Alliance on Accessible Technologies and Environments (GAATES) outlining the side events under consideration by GAATES and World Enabled for WUF9.

World Urban Forum, Kuala Lumpur, MalaysiaIn 2007, GAATES was developed as an international consortium dedicated to promoting accessibility worldwide.  Today, it is a leading international organization dedicated to the promotion of accessibility of the built and virtual environments, and to promoting the Guiding Principles of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).  GAATES’ global network includes expert members in disaster risk reduction and preparedness, information and communication technologies, urban development, and the built environment.  The alliance allows for collaborative partnerships, between a wide range of stakeholders, to implement universal design principles in creating inclusive and sustainable environments.

Appropriately, GAATES’ members have been actively planning for the upcoming World Urban Forum.  Mr. Batista Poitier first introduced the event types that participants can host, and the application processes.  He clarified that side events are focused on the organizer, their area of focus related to urban development, and the speakers they choose to highlight.  Networking events, on the other hand, are more focused on the goal of partnerships in a specific area. Training events are focused on a specific and deployable skill, and on engaging participants which would find the skill applicable to their work.  Mr. Batista Poitier informed members of the requirements necessary for each event type, and highlighted how each event should contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Forum’s theme, Cities for All.

Also presented were some of the events which GAATES is currently developing for WUF including:

  • an art exhibit related to inclusion in cities,
  • an event with network colleague,Sozialhelden, which will be a networking event where Wheelmap could promote their new white label product to organizations or cities, but with the potential to also train participants through a live mapping of the Forum,
  • an exhibit, featuring the braille and audio versions of the New Urban Agenda. This event would not only present the new versions, but would advocate for their necessity in all fields by engaging with persons without disabilities.
  • an event which would highlight the use of digital technology for inclusion in smart cities,
  • an event focused on displacement in urban centers and inclusive humanitarian action.

To follow up on the engaged discussion during the meeting, Mr. Batista Poitier is planning meetings with members interested in participating on the development of these events.  He encouraged any DIAUD member who wished to be further involved with planning to contact him: [email protected]

The DIAUD Network’s next meeting will take place on Wednesday November 15th, 2017 at 9:00am EST.  This meeting will feature a overview of the Country Representative and Certification programs available at GAATES presented by Tracey Shipman, Program Director.  The collaboration between the Institute on Disability and Public Policy (IDPP) , the Global Alliance on Accessible Technologies and Environments (GAATES), and World Enabled makes the DIAUD Network possible.  These network meetings are hosted and recorded on a virtual platform by IDPP and the recordings are available to registered DIAUD Network members.  In order to receive updates and further your participation with the Network, join the mailing list, go to

Source: Collaboration in Preparation for the World Urban Forum  

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