Words of Welcome

Welcome from Jeannine Rustad, OAPA Chapter President

The Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association is excited to host the joint OAPA/ISOCARP Conference in Portland in October.  While Oregon is known as a leader in land use planning in the United States, our planners are always eager to learn from others to see how we can improve on making great places to live.  What a better venue to learn than an international conference, sharing ideas from a global perspective.

We hope that you will take extra time to explore not only Portland, with its mix of neighborhoods, good food, but also the surrounding outer cities and natural areas.  Our urban growth boundaries (lines drawn where urban development may occur, protecting farm and forest land from the pressures of development) makes for easy access to the Columbia River Gorge, Mount Hood and the fruit orchards of the Hood River Valley or the spectacular Oregon Coast.  In the diversity of Oregon’s landscape – from the lush Willamette Valley, the urban populations, to rural areas of farm, forest and desert – you’ll be sure to find similarities to the places you call home.

We hope you’ll join us and discover not only the wonders of Oregon, but the warm and welcoming nature of the Portland Metropolitan Region.  We look forward to the exchange of ideas on how we create and maintain the Sustainable Communities.


Invitation by the ISOCARP President Ric Stephens

This year’s topic “Smart Communities” represents the convergence of technology and planning. Our 53rd World Planning Congress will examine and generate approaches to adopting information and communications technology, intelligent transportation, autonomous vehicles, ubiquitous sensing, e-government, renewable energy, the Internet of Things and the myriad of topics connected with ‘smart cities.’

Urban and regional planners, environmental designers, entrepreneurs, technology firms, civil servants, students and many others will participate in this collaborative event that provides a unique forum for innovative international concepts and practices. The Portland, Oregon location in the Pacific Northwest is a unique setting, and our hosts are planning numerous activities that will be both meaningful and memorable. I invite you to be part of this extraordinary gathering and also to join ISOCARP, a global association of professional planners from more than 80 countries.

With much appreciation for your interest and commitment to “Knowledge for Better Cities.”


Invitation by Alex Dupey, OAPA Conference Committee Chair

Welcome to the joint OAPA/ISOCARP Conference in Portland, Oregon, USA! We’re looking forward to having you with us at perhaps one of the most beautiful times of the year in the Pacific Northwest. I think you’ll find a welcoming community, great neighborhoods and districts to explore, and of course, forward thinking urban planning that pushes the envelope in both sustainability and livable communities. Plus, we’ve been told that we have the highest number of breweries per capita in the world, so there’s a little something for everyone! We also have some of the best food anywhere to go along with that pint.

This year’s theme of Sustainable Communities is a timely theme, both in the United States and abroad. Change is rapid and political, societal and technical challenges continue to push us as professionals in helping create cohesive and economically competitive communities. And the issue is international. While small communities are challenged in different ways than mega regions, the goal of a thriving community that supports everyone with the least environmental impact is universal. We look forward to this conversation and dialogue, and hope that what you see here in Portland and surrounding communities is interesting. We’re looking forward to hearing what you’re doing in each of your communities—to share ideas and experiences—because it is truly an international and critical topic for how we live on this connected planet.

Looking forward to seeing you in October.


Welcome by ISOCARP Vice-President Congresses and Events Slawomir (Slawek) Ledwon

In 2015 ISOCARP was concluding the celebrations of the 50th Anniversary during the international congress in The Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. One year later we visited South Africa and now we are proud to collaborate with the Oregon Chapter of American Planning Association to hold a Joint Conference in Portland, Oregon, USA. For ISOCARP this will be the 53rd Annual Congress, but at the same time the first joint event with another organisation. It will be an exciting opportunity to explore a different approach and collaborate closely with the members of OAPA.

I am sure there is a lot to learn for international delegates about American planning as well as for our colleagues in the United States of America to have the perspective of experiences from other continents.

We encourage national and international delegates to attend and benefit from this excellent mix of approaches. So far ISOCARP events were mainly basing on individual submissions from authors presenting papers, while OAPA has welcomed complete session proposals. This year we will combine both and also add interventions about case studies. Having all at one event will be an amazing opportunity to have a new level of international conference!

I sincerely hope that everyone will find there not only the cutting edge knowledge, but also benefit from the collaboration between organisations and learn more about the Portland region.

Join us – submit your proposal and register today!

See you in Portland, Oregon.

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