We Are Cities Roundtables

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We Are Cities is a new campaign to engage Canadians across the country to shape a vision and action plan for how we can build livable cities – exciting and healthy places to live, work and play.


Join the conversation about how to create more livable cities! 

We Are Cities roundtables are happening across the country this spring. Find your local roundtable - or if your city isn't represented, host your own!

You can also contribute to the conversation by submitting an idea to the online forum - as well as voting and commenting on ideas put forth by others.


Roundtables are coming up in the following cities:

Webinar: Tower Renewal in the Arrival City

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On March 13, join Cities of Migration and the Centre for City Ecology for a webinar on the role that apartment tower neighbourhoods are playing in accomodating urban migrants across the world.

This webinar is a live event in the Arrival City edition of the City Builder Book Club.



10:00 EDT in Toronto, New York
14:00 GMT in London
15:00 CET in Rotterdam, Berlin, Barcelona


Meet the vertical city!

Visit Bijlmermeer in Amsterdam, Marzahn in Berlin, Thorncliffe Park in Toronto. High density, apartment tower neighbourhoods like these are ‘arrival cities’ to millions of urban migrants and home to some of the most vibrant, ambitious and often most vulnerable, low income communities in the city. Newcomer potential can be thwarted without access to the proper amenities – social services, public transit or local commercial and employment opportunities. How do we leverage the potential of these dynamic high-density neighbourhoods that newcomers call home? What are the policy, zoning and social investments needed to transform the urban fringe into an incubator of immigrant and community success?

Join us to learn how the ground-breaking Tower Neighbourhood Renewal project in Toronto is exploring alternative narratives about urban renewal from European cities, integrating social resiliency, stewardship, adaptability into city-building and changing how we think about and live in tower neighbourhoods. This webinar is a live event in the Arrival City edition of the City Builder Book Club, and is brought to you by Cities of Migration and the Centre for City Ecology.


  • Graeme Stewart, Associate at ERA Architects and a founding director of the Centre for Urban Growth and Renewal (CUG+R)
  • Gerben Helleman, Urban Geographer and Blogger, Urban Springtime

Read more about the webinar and speakers, and register here.



Gewurz Lecture: Adam Greenfield

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This month, Adam Greenfield will speak on Another city is possible: Practices of the minimum viable utopia as part of the Brenda and Samuel Gewurz Lectures in Urban Design series hosted by the McGill School of Urban Planning.

The lecture will take place Friday, March 13 at 5pm at the MacDonald-Harrington Building, G-10.

Adam Greenfield Poster

This lecture is given in partnership with McGill's Institute for the Public Life of Arts and Ideas.

Adam Greenfield is a Senior Urban Fellow at LSE Cities, an international research centre at the London School of Economics, and the founding director of Urbanscale, a design consulting firm focused on relationships between information technology and the urban experience.

Header image from www.pixel.kulturen.fi

Webinar – Riane Eisler: Leadership for a Life-Sustaining World (Feb 19th)

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Conversations with Riane Eisler: Leadership for a Life-Sustaining World

Feb. 19, 2015  11am-12:30pm PST 


Join acclaimed cultural historian and futurist Riane Eisler for a dynamic dialogue about how you can take a stand for a new story of human possibility and become a leader in the movement to a more peaceful, equitable, and sustainable world.

A Leadership Series webinar. $45


In this 90-minute live online session, Riane Eisler, author of The Chalice & the Blade and The Real Wealth of Nations, will illuminate the outdated dynamics of gender and power undermining our well-being and economic prosperity. She’ll answer your questions about what role you can play in the shift to more caring and sustainable social systems that support the relationships that matter most to us all – equitable and empowering relationships with our families, our communities, and our natural environment.

Riane will answer questions including:

  • How are outdated systems of gender and power still guiding our economic policies? 
  • How can we recognize and change these patterns?
  • What would an economy that recognizes the value of the life-sustaining work of care still mainly performed by women look like? 
  • How would a caring economy put an end to the systematic impoverishment of women and children and generate greater economic prosperity for everyone, not just the 1%?
  • What can you do to support these essential changes?

Bring your questions and concerns to this interactive online discussion on Thursday, February 19th from 11:00 am – 12:30 pm PST.

You are invited to submit a question for Riane in advance of the session.  You may share a question when you register, or send a question to annamberg.cps@gmail.com no later than February 16th, 2014. Questions will also be taken in real time during the webinar, as time permits.

Download the flyer

SIRC webinar #5: Art that changes the world

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About the webinar

Judith Marcuse’s webinar will explore the burgeoning connections between art, innovation, and social change by highlighting some of the work being done in communities across Canada and internationally that employ art-making as a central strategy. Her work explores the question of how we can use a cultural lens and arts-infused practices to create more dynamic, healthy and creative cities.

Marcuse will explore what it means to integrate art perspectives and practices into change agendas in order to inform and enrich our approaches to social innovation. She will also highlight her recent work with organizations such as Cirque du Soleil’s NGO, One Drop, and in strategic planning for the City of Vancouver.

Arts-infused facilitation and other arts-based strategies can effectively address the complexity of the many challenges we face in the development of cross-sector collaboration (and in many other forms of change work). Marcuse will share insights about partnerships between arts and non-arts organizations, as well as the role that arts facilitation can take in the creation of inclusive policy and governance models.

And, because we are in the realm of vision and imagination, she will share a few simple methods to help enliven our own work habits and perspectives.

Date: Tuesday, Feburary 24, 2015

Time: 12:00-1:00pm EST

Eventbrite - Art that changes the world

About Judith Marcuse


Judith Marcuse’s career spans more than 40 years of professional work as a dancer, choreographer, director, producer, teacher, writer, consultant and lecturer in Canada and abroad. She has created over 100 original works for live performance by dance, theatre and opera companies as well as for film and television and has produced seven large-scale, international arts festivals. Her repertory contemporary dance company toured extensively in Canada and abroad for 15 years, while also producing community residencies and youth programs. Among many initiatives her youth-focused, five-year, issue-based ICE, FIRE and EARTH projects involved thousands of youth in workshops, national touring, television production and community collaborations.

Founder and Co-Director of the International Centre of Art for Social Change, she is a Senior Fellow of Ashoka International. Among her many honours, she has received the Lee and Chalmers Canadian choreographic awards and an honorary doctorate from Simon Fraser University. She is an Adjunct Professor and Artist in Residence at SFU and is leading the ASC! Project, a five-year research initiative on art for social change in Canada.

Marcuse has pioneered the application of arts-infused dialogue and other creative approaches for cross-sector collaboration and consults for private and public sector organizations across Canada and abroad.

The Starfish Canada is looking for the Top 25 Environmentalists Under 25

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Click here to nominate someone for our Top 25 list before March 20.

Click here to see our rules and regulations (PDF).

Parlez-vous français? Cliquez içi.

The Starfish Canada’s Top 25 Environmentalists Under 25 program recognizes and rewards young Canadian leaders creating positive environmental change in their local communities. By showcasing these individuals, we hope to inspire other Canadian youth to become leaders in their local communities.It’s our fifth year and our prizes are bigger and better than ever.

GRAND PRIZE: A trip for two to Whitehorse, Yukon!


Prize includes:

  • A round-trip flight for two to Whitehorse and accommodations;
  • A ½ day mountain biking lesson and rental;
  • A full day canoe/kayak rental and self-guided tour;
  • Two passes to Takhini Hot Springs;
  • Admission for two for a guided tour at the Yukon Wildlife Preserve;
  • Lunch and coffee at Bean North Coffee Roastings.

*The Starfish Canada is committed to providing an accessible grand prize. We will do our best to adapt our grand prize to fit any physical, financial, and/or emotional accessibility needs.

TOP PRIZE - TORONTO: A guaranteed spot at MEC’s Outdoor Nation in Toronto, ON (June 27-28 2015).

TOP PRIZE - MONTREAL: A guaranteed spot at MEC’s Outdoor Nation in Montreal, QC (May 16-17 2015).

Other prizes include:

  • $200 gift card to Mountain Equipment Co-Op;
  • Free registration and 100 minutes of driving time from car2go;
  • Tzeporah Berman’s book “This Crazy Time: Living Our Environmental Challenge”

See our rules and regulations for more details (PDF). You can also see our adjudication panel here.

Top 25 Environmentalists Under 25 Magazine

The Starfish Canada's Top 25 Environmentalists Under 25 Magazine showcases the 25 finalists from 2014 with longer articles, new pictures, and captivating stories from across Canada.

Past recipients include scientists, gardeners, outdoor recreationists, entrepreneurs who initiated green businesses, and volunteers who sit on the Board of Directors for local non-profit groups.

To see all past recipients, purchase a copy of our Top 25 Environmentalists Under 25 magazine.

The Cities We Need

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The McGill Institute for the Study of Canada is hosting a conference on The Cities We Need in Montreal from February 19-20, 2015.

Given that cities have moved to the centre of the policy agenda in Canada, there is a need to discuss how governance can better reflect what citizens want and need from their cities. The Cities We Need conference will look at the ways in which cities are reinventing themselves and, in turn, reinventing what it means to be Canadian.  What can we do to make our cities more equitable, sustainable and participatory?


Panels and presentations will include:

  • City Governance – The Mayor’s Perspective
  • Digital Issues
  • Focusing on Urban Culture:  Urban Imaginaries in the World
  • The Urban Night
  • The infrastructures we need
  • Urban Citizenship
  • Cities, Territories, Worlds
  • Justice, Equality and the City

Read the full program ; register here.


MAS Webinar: Evaluating the Resilience of Cities

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Evaluating the Resilience of Cities: The Role of Measurements and Indicators
a MAS Global Network Webinar Series webinar

Tuesday, February 10th, 10:00 AM EST (NYC) / 4:00 PM CET (Paris) / 6:00 PM EAT (Nairobi)

Please register here.


Building more resilient and prosperous cities is one of the greatest challenges facing our world today. Urban planners, architects, policy makers, and citizens are striving to promote the physical, ecological, economic, and social resilience of cities that also foster innovation, livability, and social justice.  What are the standards by which urban resilience should be evaluated? Are we clear on what the baselines are and on how improvements can be identified and quantified?  What indicators do we currently use, and are they sufficient? Presenters include:

  • Eugenie Birch - UPenn Co-Director for Urban Research and Chair of UN-HABITAT’s World Urban Campaign (Moderator)
  • Eduardo Moreno – Director of Research and Capacity Development, UN-HABITAT
  • Monica Brezzi – Head of Regional Analysis and Statistics Unit, OECD Directorate for Public Governance and Territorial Development
  • Garima Jain – Senior Associate, Indian Institute for Human Settlements

Jan Gehl presentation: People-oriented City Planning

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In November 2014, Cities for People hosted our first National Forum at Evergreen BrickWorks in Toronto. Renowned architect Jan Gehl delivered the following keynote presentation on Thursday, November 13, 2014.

Jan Gehl: People-oriented City Planning from J.W. McConnell Family Foundation on Vimeo.

About Jan Gehl

Jan Gehl is an Architect, Founding Partner of Gehl Architects, and former Professor and Researcher at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Architecture. Over the course of his career, he has published several books, including, “Life Between Buildings”, “Cities for People”, “New City Spaces”, “Public Spaces – Public Life”, “New City Life” and most recently “How to Study Public Life”. As part of Gehl, Jan has collaborated on projects for the cities of Copenhagen, London, Melbourne, Sydney, New York and Moscow, among others. He is an honorary fellow of RIBA, AIA, RAIC, and PIA.

Caring Economy Webinars with Riane Eisler – 14 & 22 Jan 2015

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Learn about the Caring Economy movement: On January 14, 2015 for The Caring Economy Starter Course and on January 22, 2015 for Counting Care In: An Introduction to Social Wealth Economic Indicators.

We all know the profound impact that care and care giving work have on human development and well-being, but in order to shift our patterns of investment, we must also be able to show the value of care in economic terms.

The Caring Economy Starter Course is a free 60 minute webinar with Riane Eisler that introduces the Caring Economy Campaign and shows how you can be a part of a growing movement to finally make visible the dollars-and-cents value of the work of care and caregiving that forms the essential foundation of our collective prosperity.

Counting Care In is a free 60 minute introduction to Social Wealth Economic Indicators  - new measures of prosperity that highlight the economic value of social well being and high quality human capital.

The SWEIS provide business and policy leaders a powerful new tool to support them in building a more equitable and sustainable economy.  Find out how SWEIs provide the evidence-base you need to make the case for caring policies such as paid parental and sick leave, caregiver tax credits, better pay for care workers and educators, and increased investment in early childhood care and education.

Questions? Please email Ann at annamberg.cps@gmail.com
Download the flyer