The LCF2019 detailed conference program will be available in April 2019.
Program themes and topics
The style and content of the Livable Cities Forum is tailored to large audiences via keynotes and plenaries, while the breakout sessions offer smaller more intimate dialogues. We encourage breakout sessions to be composed of interactive workshops and activities that engage stakeholders and leave a lasting memory of the event.
Three themes will be interwoven throughout this event to help highlight how action on climate change can build healthier, more equitable, and more resilient communities:
Making the Links between Climate Change, Health, and Equity
This theme will build an understanding of how building communities that are resilient to climate change can not only protect, but also improve community health and well-being. Climate change is already impacting ecosystems and communities across Canada. Without attention to the health impacts of climate change we risk rolling back much of the progress that has been made for healthy communities in the last few decades. Climate change action that uses a health and social equity lens can help to protect the most vulnerable, while at the same time providing a mechanism to build better neighbourhoods, promote social connectedness, facilitate deeper collaboration with diverse sectors, and engage with citizens on the ground. Some of the topics that may be explored specifically in this theme include:
- Climate Change, Equity and Vulnerability: what does health equity means in the face of climate change and what approaches can communities can take to be proactive in understanding and addressing vulnerability of different populations?
- Indigenous Stories of Resilience in the Face of Climate Change: how are First Nations communities, often at the forefront of climate impacts, approaching climate change and health?
- Municipal Extreme Heat Responses: lessons from the field, how are municipalities across Canada responding to extreme heat using planning, collaboration, and engagement practices.
- Social Resilience, Healthy Communities and Climate Change: how can community approaches to social connectedness help us prepare and respond to climate impacts?
- Sustainable food systems and Climate Change: how will climate change effect food security and what are communities doing to take an integrated approach to climate resilient and healthy food systems?
- Collaborative Action on Climate Change and Health: what have we learned about what is needed for cross-sector collaborative action on climate change and health?
Role of Infrastructure in Building Better Neighbourhoods
Through this theme the Forum will delve into the role that infrastructure – both built and natural – plays in creating more livable, healthy, and equitable communities. Canadian municipalities are in a period of infrastructure assessment, renewal, and investment; as decisions and investments in infrastructure are made, it is vital that these not only consider a climate adjusted future, but also what the function and possible co-benefits of that infrastructure in a community could be.
Some of the topics that will be explored within this theme area could include:
- Identifying the Co-benefits Associated with Infrastructure How can we look at infrastructure as more than just delivering a single service (e.g. stormwater retention, transportation, or water provision).
- Weighing the trade-offs involved with infrastructure decisions Workshops looking at approaches to weighing the trade-offs between infrastructure types that can offer multiple benefits, the associated costs, and the valuation of non-traditional infrastructure benefits.
- Stories of Infrastructure that Goes Further How are municipalities implementing climate solutions that are going beyond serving only one purpose?
- The Role of Natural Assets and Natural Infrastructure What have we learned about the role of natural infrastructure and urban nature as a response to climate impacts?
Advancing Low Carbon Resilience for more Livable Communities
Low Carbon Resilience is an approach that focuses on integrating climate change strategies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions (mitigation) and reduce vulnerability to climate change impacts (adaptation). Planning for the implementation of low carbon resilience via coordinated actions, policies, pricing and planning approaches can will create win-wins and save valuable time and financial resources. Under the theme of low carbon resilience, the Forum will explore how considering both climate resilience and moving towards a low carbon future in an integrated way can highlight the multiple co-benefits for communities and ecosystems.
Sessions under this theme may look at:
- The Role of Professional Associations in Promoting Low Carbon Resilience How can professional associations – planners, landscape architects, engineers – help to advance low carbon resilience?
- Advancing Integrated Planning And Collaborative Action What are the conceptual models and processes that can advance planning and action?
- Identifying and Overcoming Barriers to Low Carbon Resilience
- Stories and Examples of Low Carbon Resilience. How are municipalities and other organizations approaching low carbon resilience and implementing interventions?