Introduction of Tartu conference

Estimates indicate that by 2050, the world population is expected to increase by 2.3 billion, passing from 7.0 billion to 9.3 billion. At the same time, according to UN the population living in urban areas is projected to gain 2.6 billion, meaning that the urban areas of the world are expected to absorb all the population growth expected over the next four decades while at the same time drawing in some of the rural population.

Add resource scarcity, growing energy demands and consumption, expanding (commuter) traffic, pollution and noise. The pace and global nature of these changes present ambitious challenge for sound planning both in cities and rural areas. What we plan today will have to serve the needs of city-dwellers and other alike up to 20 years and more. Road and communication infrastructure, land-use distribution, buildings, energy grid are huge financial investments but have also tremendous and long-standing social and environmental impact.

What would be the universal principles that should be mainstreamed in (green) planning practice? Do we have now better tools to look ahead 20 years than we did 20 years ago? How we define the qualities of livable and resilient city from economical, environmental and community point of view?

The organizers of this conference are committed to put forward variety of up-to-date developments in city planning. We aim for engaging right people right time to contribute to future city planning via providing insights from environmental and social perspective. With the help of Nordic and Estonian speakers we want to know:

  • what makes the city green?
  • why and how ecological footprint evaluation?
  • how policies can change attitude?
  • what are green buildings and who builds them/and why no one builds them?