The 2022 Workshop for Thought Leaders and Guangzhou Award 10th Anniversary Celebration took place at the Guangzhou Baiyun International Convention Center from December 12th to 15th. Representatives of over 120 cities in more than 50 countries and regions, associates from international organizations, and experts and scholars in the field of urban studies attended online to review the past decade of the Guangzhou Award and discuss the future of urban sustainability.
Jointly established by the city of Guangzhou, UCLG, and Metropolis, the Guangzhou Award is the first international award named after a Chinese city. The Guangzhou Award 10th Anniversary Event Series included an opening ceremony, 4 sub-fora, and a closing ceremony. At the opening ceremony, the latest research reports of the Guangzhou Award, including Civitas Novus: Urban Innovation Assessment Zero Draft Report and Learning from the 5th Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation were released. The International Database on Urban Innovation and the Guangzhou Award 10th Anniversary Online Exhibition were simultaneously announced.
The themes of the sub-fora were Green Cities and Climate Resilience, Urban Heritage and Cultural Preservation, Diverse Cities and Inclusive Development, and Innovative Cities, Technology and Governance. During each sub-forum, city representatives and other experts looked into the innovative initiatives of the Guangzhou Award, exchanged experiences and insights in lessons-learned, and stimulated peer-learning among cities worldwide.
With 10 years of mainstreaming urban innovation efforts, the Guangzhou Award has contributed local knowledge to the global governance and the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. Since its inception in 2012, the Guangzhou Award has been held for 5 cycles with a total of 1,361 initiatives from 556 cities and local governments in 96 countries and regions. It has sparked innovative solutions to various urban challenges and been implemented to respond to all 17 Sustainable Development Goals. In 2020, the shortlisted initiatives of the Guangzhou Award were included in the Best Practices Database of the UN-Habitat Urban Agenda Platform. The Guangzhou Award has always been used to dedicate the documentation and study of urban innovation initiatives, in order to provide public goods of high quality to cities and local governments for accelerating urban transformation and attaining the New Urban Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development goals.
Four editions of the Workshop for Thought Leaders have been held under the framework of the Guangzhou Award, with the aim of sharing the latest experience and knowledge and encouraging international exchanges and capacity building in the field of urban innovation. A large number of city managers and stakeholders worldwide have participated in the Workshop for Thought Leaders and learned from urban innovation.