Marmara Urban Forum 2021 - Cities Developing Solutions: Re-Think, Co-Act

From 01 Octobre 2021 09:00 until 03 Octobre 2021 17:00
At Online
Categories: ACR+ partner event

Marmara Urban Forum (MARUF) is a biennial international urban forum organized with the motto of “Cities Developing Solutions” by Marmara Municipalities Union (MMU), which is a local government association in the Marmara Region of Turkey with over 190 members. MARUF strives not only to discuss the challenges that cities face but also to seek solutions to them and multiply good practices at a global scale.


The second Marmara Urban Forum, organized by Marmara Municipalities Union, was held online on 1-3 October 2021 on the theme of “Cities Developing Solutions: Re-Think, Co-Act” by recognizing the necessity of reconsidering established urban policies and planning processes in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Issues such as climate change, environmental degradation, discrimination, increase in inequality and poverty not only threaten the city and its dwellers, but also become more and more complex with the current urbanization practices. Existing governance mechanisms and paradigms fall short of developing a just and equitable solution for residents, particularly migrants, the poor, children, the elderly and other vulnerable groups. Global crises, such as pandemics and forced migrations that rapidly and greatly affect societies and individuals, show us the need to rethink our relationship with the city. In addition, the prevalence, depth, and cost of the issues necessitate acting together with all stakeholders. Creating healthy, resilient, inclusive, creative, innovative, and sustainable cities are of the utmost importance to combat these problems, and the first step in doing this is to realize the need to re-think and co-act.


The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the necessity of reconsidering the issues of individual and social life on an urban, national and global scale. It has caused disruptions in health services unemployment, economic losses, the rise of income inequality, and hardships in the education and cultural sector all around the world. This process in which we question our habits and expectations from the city also respahes our perception of the city. Our priorities, which are mostly determined by the fast-paced lifestyle of the city, are changing with a slower and even a stagnant pace of life. We need to re-think issues such as the use of homes and offices, remote working models, use of public spaces, transportation and logistics management, income inequality, urban healthcare, and many others.

Marmara Urban Forum, which offered an opportunity to transform the lessons learned from the pandemic into teachings and to initiate radical transformations, focused on six main axes which are “healthy,” “inclusive,” innovative,” “resilient,” “sustainable,” and “creative” cities. MARUF21 put forward an endeavor to create an exchange and dialogue platform among the public and private sector, NGOs, universities, local governments and all other stakeholders.

MARUF on the GO

MARUF21, which is in the search for radical solutions to today's urban problems, hosted "MARUF on the GO" events in August and September. These events, which included a series of dynamic learning and interaction processes that last two months, did not only spread MARUF21 across time and space, but also produced important topics and results for the discussion platform that the forum provides. MARUF on the GO was open to participants from all disciplines related to the city and included events such as workshops, training sessions, webcasts, podcasts, etc.


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