City Living: The UNECE Glasgow Conference Speakers


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Cllr Susan Aitken
Leader of the Council, Glasgow City Council
Susan Aitken became Leader of Glasgow City Council when the SNP became the largest party on the Council and formed a minority administration in May 2017. She was elected as a councillor for the Langside ward, where she lives, in 2012 and has been leader of the SNP group since 2014, having previously served as the group spokesperson on health and social care. Before being elected, Susan worked in a variety of policy and research roles in the Scottish Parliament and the third sector, and as a freelance writer and editor specialising in health and social care policy. She grew up in Biggar in South Lanarkshire, moved to Glasgow aged 17 and is a graduate of both Glasgow and Strathclyde Universities.


Etive Currie
Senior Planner, Glasgow City Council
Etive Currie is a senior planner in Glasgow City Council based in the Spatial Development Plan team as Place Lead. She is the co-designer and co-creator of the award-winning Place Standard Tool. Etive is a Place Adviser to WHO (World Health Organisation) Healthy Cities Place, Health, Inequalities & Wellbeing Working Group. She is a specialist in Healthy Urban Planning, designer of the Healthy Sustainable Neighbourhoods Model and the co-creator of Healthy Sustainable Me a Course for Communities. Etive is the Lead Officer for the Equally Well Glasgow Test Site.


Katie Duffy
Senior Projects and Programmes Manager – Arts and Music, Glasgow Life
Katie has worked in the arts and festivals sector for 25 years inspired by her training and ongoing practice as a musician. Katie held the role of Senior Cultural Programme Manager at the Glasgow 2018 European Championships, leading on the programming and delivery of Festival 2018 – a large-scale, spectacular and collaborative city wide event with an inclusive programme which championed Participatory Budgeting as one of many innovative engagement initiatives. In her current role as Senior Projects and Programmes Manager for Glasgow Life, Katie has responsibility for the city’s cultural festivals including Celtic Connections, Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art, Glasgow Mela and Merchant City Festival. She also oversees the wider Glasgow Arts and Music programme and led the team in the implementation of Phase 1 of the Creative Communities – Artists in Residence programme; an initiative which supports and enables the widest possible creative dialogue in communities across the city by commissioning an artist to work in each one of Glasgow’s 23 electoral wards.


Colin Edgar
Head of Communication and Strategic Partnerships, Glasgow City Council
Colin is the city council’s Head of Communication and Strategic Partnerships since 2006. In his time he has been a PR for BAE Systems and the Labour Party, as well as a political journalist for the BBC, producing the nightly Politics Tonight programme on Radio Scotland. During his time at the council he has led the city’s communication response to the Clutha and Queen Street tragedies, as well as leading for the city on the Get Ready Glasgow campaign which kept the city moving during the commonwealth games in 2014.


Professor Brian Evans
Glasgow City Urbanist, Head of Urbanism, The Mackintosh School of Architecture, Director of Glasgow Urban Laboratory
Brian Evans is Professor of Urbanism and Landscape at The Glasgow School of Art and Director of the Glasgow Urban Laboratory. In January 2019, he was appointed by Glasgow as its first City Urbanist to act as a strategic adviser and help embed an approach to ‘place quality’ in all of the city’s strategies that affect how we live. In recent years, Brian has worked in North America, the Scandinavia countries, the Russian Federation, Turkey, the Balkans and the Peoples Republic of China leading teams that won international competitions for the expansion of the City of Moscow, the transformation of the River Moscow and the expansion of Suzhou. Since 2015, he has acted as an expert adviser to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and led the team that prepared the UN-Habitat regional report on the UNECE for Habitat III. He is a founder of the Academy of Urbanism and a widely published author on urbanism, the future city and the inherited landscape. From 1989-2015 he was a partner of Gillespies the international practice of landscape architects and urbanists.


Patrick Flynn
Head of Housing and Regeneration Services
Patrick Flynn joined Glasgow District Council as a housing officer in 1981. He joined Scottish Homes in 1991 and subsequently held a number of senior positions in that organisation and then in Communities Scotland and the Scottish Government. He rejoined Glasgow City Council in April 2011 and is the Head of Housing and Regeneration Services.


Daniela Grabmüllerová
Vice-Chair, UNECE Committee on Housing & Land Management
Daniela is Deputy Vice-Minister and Director of the International Relations Department of the Ministry of Regional Development of the Czech Republic, where she started working in 90s, after her practice as an architect–designer. She served as an elected member of the Prague One Municipality Council as an independent no-party candidate for two electoral periods. She is a member of the Academic and Scientific Council of the Faculty of Construction of the Czech Technical University and serves as a Vice-Chair of the Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.


Max Hislop
Manager, Glasgow & Clyde Valley Green Network Partnership
Max Hislop is the Manager for the Glasgow & Clyde Valley Green Network Partnership (a partnership of the 8 Glasgow City Region local authorities and 6 government agencies). He manages a team charged with facilitating delivery of a network of multifunctional green infrastructure across the Glasgow City Region. Max is a Chartered Forester and Social Researcher by training and has worked on social and community dimensions of green infrastructure for nearly 30 years. In the early 1990’s he was the first Community Forester with Thames Chase in East London. He then became a Social and Community Forestry Project Leader with Forest Research helping to establish a Social Forestry Research Programme. He has been in his present role since 2007, and currently he’s focused on strategic planning for the Green Network through the development of a spatial delivery plan and overcoming problems with green infrastructure delivery mechanisms.


Fanchea Kelly
Chief Executive, Blackwood Housing Association
Blackwood Homes and Care is the national provider in Scotland for people with physical disability, mobility, or age- related conditions. Fanchea Kelly joined Blackwood as Chief Executive in 2013. Since then the Blackwood House – a beautiful, highly accessible, connected and affordable home, fit for ‘helping people live their life to the full’- has been developed. CleverCogs, Blackwood’s new digital system, opens up choice and control for customers, and is generating significant interest in how care and support services can be redesigned. Blackwood is now an award-winning innovator with a strong reputation for using technology to help people live independently. Prior to Blackwood Fanchea had over 20 years’ experience in senior roles across Scotland. She was Director of Strategy with Glasgow Housing Association, and previously led Edinburgh Council’s landlord operations. She also was Head of Inspection with the housing regulator in Scotland and has been an active member of the Institute of Housing throughout her career.


Professor Duncan Maclennan
Public Policy, University of Glasgow
Duncan has had a career as an applied economist in both academia and government, focussing on the economics of housing, infrastructure, neighbourhoods, cities and regions. Duncan holds Chairs as Professor of Public Policy at the University of Glasgow and as a visiting Professorial Research Fellows at the City Futures Centre at UNSW, Sydney. He has previously held visiting chairs in the Wharton Business School (University of Pennsylvania) and in the Department of Economics at the University of California at Berkeley. Duncan also spent ten years working as an economist within government. He was Special Adviser to the First Ministers of Scotland from 1999-2003 then spent the period 2004-2009 working first in Australia, as a Chief Economist and Deputy Secretary for Policy and Strategy in the Government of Victoria, and then Canada, as Chief Economist in the Federal Department for Infrastructure and Cities.


Linda Malone
Chair, New Gorbals Housing Association
Linda has been actively involved with New Gorbals HA for 10 years and was elected as Chair of our Management Committee in 2016. She chairs our Management Committee meetings, supports her fellow committee members and our senior staff, and plays an active role representing the organisation at external events etc. Linda was brought up in the Gorbals and after moving away in 1991, she returned in 2006, where she is a tenant of New Gorbals Housing Association. Linda holds qualifications in Social Care, and also a Sociology degree. Having worked previously for the Aberlour Child Care Trust and the Simon Community, Linda now works in a support role at The Nue Housing Association’s retirement housing in the Calton area. Linda takes an active interest in the community, and served on Crossroads Youth and Community Committee for 6 years until 1991 and has also served on the committee of local voluntary organisation TASK, which provides early years’ and family support and learning services. Linda takes a keen interest in Welfare Reform and its impacts, and is concerned about the levels of inequality and poverty in society today.


Kevin Murray
Director, Kevin Murray Associates
Kevin is a town planner and urbanist, with specialisms in strategy, regeneration and stakeholder engagement. Kevin is a Founding Director and Past Chair of The Academy of Urbanism, a Fellow and Past President of the RTPI, and current Chair of Partners in Planning. He is also Honorary Professor of Planning at Glasgow and Dundee Universities. He regularly facilitates the development of visions and strategies, action plans and projects, working with communities, public agencies and developers. Kevin has worked in many Glasgow neighbourhoods including the Gorbals, Maryhill, Sauchiehall and Springburn.He has also worked internationally in Canada, Egypt, Ireland, Jordan, Malta and Russia.


Tony Reddy
Incoming Chair, The Academy of Urbanism
Tony Reddy is a founder of both The Academy of Urbanism and Urban Forum. He is the Chairman of Reddy Architecture + Urbanism, an International design practice. He is the former President of the RIAI. His practice is involved in a wide range of projects including furniture, complex architectural projects and major urban regeneration projects. From its office in the UK and Ireland the practice is involved in a wide range of projects from individual buildings to urban regeneration of city quarters. His practices’ ability to provide a strong design focus and a clear understanding of how people and places interact, has resulted in a wide range of commissions and projects which have contributed to contemporary architecture and the built environment. Among the practices key projects are Custom House Square (IFSC), Eircom Building, Temple Bar West End, Heuston South Quarter, Kilkenny Creative Quarter and Masterplans for Trinity College, University College Dublin, University College Cork, Dublin City University and NUIG Galway.


Anuela Ristani
Deputy Mayor of Tirana
Anuela Ristani is currently the Deputy Mayor of Tirana in charge of Foreign Relations. Her professional experience has been primarily related to business development for newly established international companies in Albania and then focused on communication and marketing strategies. In 2008-2010, as an expert at the World Bank, she led the project for reforming and modernizing the financial sector in Albania, gaining experience in policymaking and legislation drafting. Anuela Ristani joined the public administration in 2014 as General Director of the National Youth Service, where she worked for the establishment of the RYCO (Regional Youth Cooperation Office) and opened the first youth centers in Albania’s major cities. She was appointed to the position of Head of the Cabinet of the Mayor of Tirana after the 2015 local elections, a position she held for the four years of the first term of Mayor Veliaj.


Lisa Scott
Principal – City Deal: Regeneration and Planning, Glasgow City Council
Lisa Scott is an Architect for Glasgow City Council, Development and Regeneration Services and is passionate about strategic urban regeneration. As a principal officer in the Glasgow City Region City Deal, Lisa contributes to the city’s emerging River Strategy and is responsible for projects in the ‘Waterfront and West End Innovation Quarter’ programme. Prior to this Lisa had a key role in the design masterplan and delivery strategy for the Sighthill TRA. Earlier in her career Lisa worked with the renowned design firm RMJM contributing to notable regeneration projects including the ‘2014 Commonwealth Games, Athletes Village’, where she now lives with her young family, and the ‘Laurieston TRA’ masterplan.


Fraser Stewart
Director, New Gorbals Housing Association
Fraser Stewart has been the Director of the Community Controlled New Gorbals Housing Association in Glasgow since it started building in 1992. He previously directed regeneration and rehabilitation projects in Govan and Greenock, and in Gorbals has driven the development of 1,200 new build homes. Fraser has also completed three stock transfers of over 2,000 households from Scottish Homes and Glasgow Housing Association, which have involved extensive demolition and modernisation projects. Over almost 30 years he has played a key role in transforming the built environment of the Gorbals through a series of comprehensive urban strategy initiatives.


Jim Stockard
Lecturer in Housing Studies, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Jim Stockard is a specialist in affordable housing. He recently retired after 17 years as the Curator of the Loeb Fellowship at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and continues to teach at the GSD. In 2016, he was a Fulbright U.S. Scholar at the Glasgow School of Art, studying the social housing program of Scotland. Stockard was the Principal Investigator for the Congressionally-mandated Public Housing Operating Cost Study and was the Special Master for Judge Stefan Graae in the case of the Washington, DC Housing Authority. Stockard served as a commissioner of the Cambridge Housing Authority from 1973-2013.


James Strang
President, The Chartered Institute of Housing & Chief Executive, Parkhead Housing Association
Jim Strang has been in the sector for over 40 years and has held a number of senior Local Authority posts in the west of Scotland. He has been on the Board of Barrhead Housing Association and the John Wheatley College and has been a visiting lecturer in Housing Management at Glasgow Metropolitan College. He the former Chair of the Scotland Board of the CIH Scotland, a Fellow of and is the current President of the Chartered Institute of Housing. Recently Jim has also lent his expertise to the Boards of Riverclyde Homes and Ferguslie Park Housing Association. He is also the Chief Executive of Parkhead Housing Association Ltd, an RSL based in the East End of Glasgow.


Dr. Elena Szolgayová
Chair, UNECE Committee on Urban Development, Housing & Land Management
Dr Elena Szolgayová is an architect and urban planner with long-standing research experience and recently Director-General, DG Housing Policy and Urban Development, Ministry of Transport and Construction, Slovakia. For over two decades she participated in shaping the visions of the global and European housing and urban policies and was one of those steering the process toward adoption of the Geneva UN Charter on sustainable housing. She participated in the Habitat III Bureau and in the Housing Policy Unit during the preparatory process of the New Urban Agenda. Currently, Elena is one of the coordinators of the Housing Partnership under the UAEU. Since 2013 she has served as Chair of the UNECE Committee on Housing and Land Management.


Giorgia Tzar
International Communications, International Passive House Association
Giorgia directs the International Passive House Association, communicating with stakeholders worldwide on Passive House principles and policy. Previously, Giorgia worked in the Public Diplomacy department of the Australian Embassy Berlin. She studied at the University of Tübingen and has worked on EU projects, including Train to nZEB and Sinfonia. She speaks at events on policy issues, including COP, EU Sustainable Energy Week and as a member of the Global Alliance for Building and Construction and Group of Experts on Energy Efficiency for the UNECE.


Pam Warhurst CBE
Incredible Edible
Pam cofounded Incredible Edible, an initiative begun in Northern England dedicated to growing food locally by planting on unused land throughout the community; she called it propaganda gardening. Pam Warhurst CBE has been an activist and advisor for over 40 years. She was involved in local politics and national policy as the Chair of the Board of the Forestry Commission, which advises on and implements forestry policy in Great Britain. She also cofounded Incredible Edible Todmorden, a local food partnership that encourages community engagement through local growing. Incredible Edible started small, with the planting of a few community herb gardens in Todmorden, and today has spin-offs in the U.S. and Japan, counting over 100 groups in the UK and 600 worldwide. Incredible Edible empowers ordinary people to take control of their communities through active civic engagement, redefining prosperity through the power of small actions.


Joyce White OBE
Chief Executive, West Dunbartonshire Council
Joyce White is the Chief Executive of West Dunbartonshire Council a local authority which serves 89,590 residents and a lively business community in an area stretching from the banks of Loch Lomond to the shores of the Clyde. As Chief Executive, Joyce is responsible for driving the Council to deliver against its strategic priorities, the management of Council operations and the work of approximately 5,000 staff who deliver a wide range of key services and manages a revenue budget in excess of £220m. This role also requires working closely with Elected Members to ensure there is strong and visible leadership and direction.


Stephen Willacy
City Architect, Aarhus, Denmark
Prior to being appointed the chief city architect of Aarhus in 2012, Stephen Willacy combined his practice as partner at Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects with teaching and research at Aarhus School of Architecture and various universities in Denmark, USA and the UK. Currently he is a honorary professor in Architecture and Urban Design at the University of Dundee in Scotland. As chief city architect Stephen works towards ensuring that the city develops in a way where architectural considerations are held in the highest regard and contributes towards continued innovation in relation to city planning, urban design and architectural quality.