The New Cities Foundation: Launch of Major New Global Platform for Innovation in 21st Century CitiesBy New Cities Foundation, PRNE
Sunday, March 27, 2011
The New Cities Foundation brings together leading global players from the private, public, research and non-profit sectors to work on new models of collaboration to improve life and work in the 21st century city, with a focus on fast-urbanizing countries in Asia, the Middle East, South America and Africa.
GENEVA, March 28, 2011 - The launch of the New Cities Foundation, a non-profit
independent organization based in Geneva, Switzerland, was announced today.
The Foundation is the premier global independent platform for high-level
exchange among the private, public, academic and non-profit sectors to
improve the quality of life and work in new cities of the 21st century.
The New Cities Foundation develops new models of partnership
among high-level thought leaders in the fields of technology, energy,
sustainability, infrastructure, telecoms, transport, finance, architecture,
design, public policy and research.
For the first time in our history, the majority of humans now
live in cities. Cities in China, India and across Asia, South America, the
Middle East and Africa, in particular, are experiencing unprecedented rates
of urban growth. Cities worldwide are growing at the rate of two new
inhabitants - per second. That is equivalent to a city of the size of Salt
Lake City, every day.
This major global phenomenon comes with complex challenges on
issues such as environmental sustainability, energy, transport and social
cohesion. Thanks in part to technological advances, this urban future also
presents great opportunities to create more sustainable, dynamic and
New Cities Foundation Members
The Foundation's membership is open to companies, cities and
local governments, leading research institutions and non-profits who share
the vision of NCF. The Foundation is entirely funded by its members.
The Foundation's first Founding Members are GE, Cisco and
Ericsson and members include global leaders such as Orange (France Telecom),
GDF Suez, New York University's Wagner School as well as the Gateway House
think-tank in India.
"Ericsson is very pleased to be a Founding Member of the New
Cities Foundation, a much-needed new global platform for creative exchanges
on 21st century cities," said Jan Wareby, Senior Vice President and Head of
Group Function Sales and Marketing of Ericsson. "The Foundation's Task Forces
and the New Cities Summit are unique ways for Ericsson to work with and learn
from a range of new partners, to challenge ourselves to innovate - thereby
growing our business in a way that serves our customers and cities worldwide.
We look forward to this exciting relationship."
Ferdinando Beccalli-Falco, President and CEO GE Europe and
North Asia said, "GE is the world's leading infrastructure company with a
committed objective to take on the toughest global challenges. We welcome the
formation of The New Cities Foundation and believe that the Foundation's
goals align well with our strategy to bring finance and innovative technology
solutions in mobility, clean energy, water and healthcare to cities and
metropolises around the world."
"The world is going through massive rebalancing of wealth, knowledge and
resources as a result of major demographic shifts. Most of the world's
population now live in cities and we at Cisco see these transitions as a
tremendous opportunity to transform physical communities to connected
communities, using network as a platform, to enable economic, social and
environmental sustainability," said Wim Elfrink, Executive Vice President and
Chief Globalisation Officer of Cisco.
He added "the New Cities Foundation is a unique new venture,
bringing together decision-makers who share a desire to innovate, exchange
and make a difference. We are proud to be Founding Members of the New Cities
Foundation and look forward to the first New Cities Summit and to leading an
exciting Task Force with the Foundation."
Gerard Mestrallet, CEO of GDF SUEZ said "The value of a
sustainable city is its capacity to adapt and to transform itself over time,
to its quality of life, to the efficiency of its buildings, to the fluidity
of its networks, to its safety and to the different uses of it's space. The
transformation of urban space will be extensive. GDF SUEZ intends to meet
"The world's fast-growing cities of the 21st century represent
great challenges for all of us, with a strong need for livability and
sustainability," comments Vivek Badrinath, Senior Vice President of France
Telecom Orange and CEO of Orange Business Services. "As a member of the New
Cities Foundation, Orange is committed to accompany these challenges and to
bring its expertise in new network, IT and communications solutions. This is
already what Orange Business Services is bringing to the Middle East, in the
new downtown Beirut, the future financial district in Riyadh, in Saudi
Arabia, or for The Pearl project in Qatar. Next generation cities are on the
horizon and innovative collaboration is essential in bringing them to
Ellen Schall, Dean of the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of
Public Service at New York University said, "NYU Wagner and New Cities
Foundation share a common belief in the power of collaboration - the need to
unite sectors to jointly develop fresh, bold solutions to increasingly
complex problems facing cities around the world."
The New Cities Summit
The Foundation will host the New Cities Summit - the premier
global event for high-level exchange and innovation on the future or
urbanization. This invitation-only forum will bring together the top globally
recognized names in this field - CEOs, ministers, mayors, world renowned
researchers - for a 3-day content-rich discussion.
The inaugural Summit is scheduled to take place during the
last quarter of 2011 or the first quarter of 2012 in a city in Asia. An
announcement will be made shortly in partnership with the host city.
Task Forces: concrete innovation in cities
The New Cities Foundation has launched a number of Task
Forces, each one led by a Founding Member, to explore innovative solutions in
pilot cities. These projects will help shape the best urban practices of
tomorrow. Each Task Force brings together the Foundation's diverse membership
working in a creative and collaborative process. Current Task Forces are
focusing on complex urban challenges such as mobility and transport,
intelligent public buildings, waste management and e-health. Using a range of
multimedia tools, these real-world applications will be widely shared, among
others during the New Cities Summit.
For more information: www.newcitiesfoundation.org
Press Contact: Mathieu Lefevre, Executive Director, New Cities Foundation, mathieu.lefevre at newcitiesfoundation.org, Phone +33-6-84-38-61-76
Tags: Africa, Asia, Geneva, March 28, New Cities Foundation, Switzerland