Sustainable Cities and Landscapes

Rethinking the City- APRU Sustainability Hub from International Ducks on Vimeo.

The University of Oregon, an international leader in sustainable urban design and landscape planning through its renowned Sustainable Cities Initiative and its Department of Landscape Architecture, is hosting the APRU Sustainable Cities and Landscapes Research Hub. The Hub aims to engage with cross-disciplinary experts, government officials and non-governmental organisations to consider Pacific Rim cities in the context of their many landscape interdependencies, including services, networks and systems within and beyond the urban periphery.  It will harness the breadth of experiences and socio-ecological contexts across the Pacific Rim to compare existing practices and models of city-landscape interactions, and to initiate solutions and policy interventions to make entire city-landscape complexes more sustainable.

Save the Date: 2018 APRU Sustainable Cities and Landscape Conference & Design Field School

2018 APRU Sustainable Cities and Landscapes Conference will be held at the University of Hong Kong from September 6-9, 2018, and is being organized by the Division of Landscape Architecture.

APRU-SCL conferences provide opportunities for academics and experts from different regions, cultures and disciplines around the Pacific Rim to collaborate on common sustainability challenges and to develop new understandings and responses that can foster transformative change within cities, and between cities and their surrounding landscapes. In September 2018, the three-day conference will be structured around 12 working groups.

Productive cities, infrastructural ecologies
City-landscape sustainability
Urban biodiversity
Urban renewable energy
Sustainable urban design
Urban water and sanitation
Rural-urban linkages
Transitions in urban waterfronts
Vulnerable communities
Landscape and human health
- Waste management
Smart cities 

Apply Now!
Applications to join working groups are now being considered. There may still be a few places available. If you are interested to join one of the working groups please submit an application as soon as possible. We should be able to confirm whether your application can be accepted within 10 days.

The conference will also include a one-day public session on September 7 to open the discussion up to the local community, practice, government and community groups.

Click here to see the flyer.
Click here to see the WeChat announcement.

The 7th Annual EPIC Network Conference

April 8-11, 2018: University of Wisconsin- Madison (USA)

Partnering Higher Education and Communities to Improve the Places We Live.

The Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Communities Network (EPIC-N) is pleased to invite university representatives, city officials and organizational partners to our Seventh Annual Conference. The EPIC model offers a proven, replicable and sustainable locally-based model, and our network represents more than 25 existing programs implementing this model.

2017 APRU Sustainable Cities and Landscapes Conference

The 1st Annual Sustainable Cities and Landscapes Conference with the theme U.S. Pacific Northwest in Pacific Rim Perspective concluded on September 17, 2017. The conference was hosted by the University of Oregon and took place at the White Stag Building in Portland, Oregon.

120 speakers, guest, and delegates from over 11 economies in the Asia Pacific convened in Portland to consider and discuss the importance of the management of the nexus between cities and their surrounding landscapes to the most pressing sustainability issues. This includes the degree to which connections to regional landscapes provide health, vitality and a sense of place to urban residents. Numerous “sustainable” solutions have failed due to lack of understanding of the city-landscape system as a whole.

Through cross-disciplinary collaboration, the Association of the Pacific Rim Universities’ Sustainable Cities and Landscape Hub explored in this conference the synergies and tradeoffs among different approaches to enhancing landscape-level sustainability and resilience in the face of continued urban growth and global climate change.

6th Annual EPIC-N Conference and Workshop 

March 20-22, 2017: Texas A&M University, College Station, TX (USA)

The Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Communities (EPIC) framework is a unique, highly scaled university-community partnership program.

It takes advantage of the time and talent of universities to help communities accelerate and advance their own socially and environmentally forward-looking goals.  Originally developed at the University of Oregon, there are now over 25 EPIC programs, demonstrating the ability of this model to be adapted for different university and community contexts.

The 6th Annual EPIC-N Conference and Workshop is the signature workshop and training conference, combining those seeking to start a new program with representatives from existing EPIC programs sharing their insights and strategies to continuously improve the effectiveness of the EPIC approach. For new participants, the goal of the workshop is to help them leave with tangible action items, if not the beginnings of an actual partnership itself.

Information about the conference and the EPIC model can be found here: or here:

APRU Sustainable Cities & Landscapes Research Hub Focuses on City-Landscape Interplay

APRU members at the inaugural SCL steering group meeting.

The University of Oregon’s (UO) Global Studies Institute, host of the APRU Sustainable Cities & Landscapes Research Hub (SCL Hub), held the inaugural hub planning meeting at the UO Portland campus.

16 experts representing disciplines across Landscape Architecture, Planning & Design, Human Ecology, Environment & Sustainability and Architecture from seven member universities and the APRU International Secretariat came together to discuss the SCL Hub’s core focus, which was agreed to be on the city-landscape interplay, as well as the Hub’s key principles and main research areas of the hub for the next three to five years.

The SCL Research Hub will address local city-landscape issues associated with global challenges by engaging with partners from academia, local stakeholders, urban policy makers and major developers to bring about transformative activities and innovative solutions.

Key activities that the Hub will drive forward include the annual Sustainable Cities & Landscape conference, along-side the development of interdisciplinary research teams and collaborative projects as well as suitable and innovative training opportunities.

Funded Training Opportunity at Resilient Cities Conference 2017 - Extension of Application Deadline

The APRU Sustainable Cities & Landscapes Hub brings you a unique training opportunity taking place at the Resilient Cities 2017 Forum in May 2017.

Collaborating pairs of individuals representing a university and a local municipal/ city government will be funded to receive training on a unique and very successful engagement framework presently already implemented by over 30 University partners

The model is called Educational Partnership for Innovation in Communities Network (EPIC-N) and is designed to address the broad spectrum of sustainability-related information and knowledge needs of local governments and communities.

This has been developed from the successful collaboration between University and local governments where students and faculty are connection with real-world projects that address pressing needs of cities and local municipalities. This is done through systematically matching city needs with university capacity in ways that benefit all parties, with lasting and sustainable impacts for all involved

Selected pairs of candidates will be funded up to US$4,000 per person to participate in a one-day training on the EPIC-N Model, and to attend the Resilient Cities 2017 Forum taking place in Bonn, Germany.

In brief:

The training organizers have requested that pairs (one local government and one university representative) submit Expressions of Interest by 25 January with:

  1. Names and affiliations for both individuals
  2. Contact information for both individuals
  3. A short 1-2 paragraph explanation of why they are interested in this training  

Selected pairs will be funded to attend the training on 3 May and the Resilient Cities congress 4 - 6 May (Bonn, Germany). 

Find more information and updated application guidelines for Expression of Interests here

Deadline for funding applications is 25 January 2017