Cities, Innovation and Transformation

Cities, Innovation and Transformation 2016-10-20T17:24:22+00:00

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Chair: Prof Leslie Bank, Human Sciences Research Council, South Africa
Panellist: Dr Geci Karuri-Sabina, SA Cities Network, South Africa
Panellist: Prof Alan Mabin, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
Panellist: Ms Lucia Scoombee, South Africa, Elsevier
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Cities in Africa face challenges related to segregation, fragmentation and social marginalisation. SA cities experience these problems particularly acutely. Despite progressive policies, contemporary development has tended to perpetuate inherited urban forms, thereby reinforcing inequality and inefficiency. More innovative urban planning, investment, regulations and commercial development are vital to transform the structure and integrate social and economic conditions in cities.

This round-table will consider the obstacles to spatial transformation and identify examples of experimentation in urban practice. It will consider the socio-economic and institutional barriers to urban change, and discuss how some cities are managing to address these through initiatives that promote more compact and connected development. It will consider the vested interests underlying current patterns, as well as the bureaucratic obstacles that inhibit creativity in urban design and investment. Innovation requires a break from past practices and a greater appetite for risk and learning from elsewhere. The session will consider what mechanisms exist for international collaboration to address these challenges, and whether any new opportunities could be explored. A better understanding of urban development dynamics and constraints in other countries might assist to formulate better policies and governance arrangements to bring about more inclusive and prosperous cities.
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bankProf Leslie Bank
Human Sciences Research Council, South Africa
Moderator

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sabinaDr Geci Karuri-Sabina
SA Cities Network, South Africa
Panellist

Dr Geci Karuri-Sebina has been Executive Manager at South African Cities Network since 2011. She previously worked with National Treasury, the CSIR, HSRC, and the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) Advanced Policy Institute. Geci holds Masters degrees in Urban Planning and Architecture from UCLA, and a PhD from the University of Witwatersrand. Her interests span a range of development foresight, policy, planning and practice topics, particularly relating to urban governance, the built environment and innovation systems. She has two decades’ experience working and publishing in these fields. Her most recent publication is the book Innovation Africa (Emerald Books, 2016). Geci is a Council Member on the South African Council of Planners, and an Associate Research Fellow of the Institute for Economic Research on Innovation (IERI) and the National Research Foundation’s South African Research Chair on Innovation and Development. She is also a founding director of the Southern African Node of the Millennium Project, co-founder of ForesightForDevelopment.org, an Associate Editor for the African Journal for Science, Technology, Innovation and Development (Taylor & Francis), and Africa Regional Editor for Foresight: The journal of future studies, strategic thinking and policy (Emerald).
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mabinProf Alan Mabin
University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
Panellist

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scoombeeMs Lucia Scoombee
Elsevier, South Africa
Panellist

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