WUF11 is approaching – what will the World Urban Forum WUF11 in Katowice offer?
Debates, sessions, presentations, the Urban Expo exhibition, concerts, meetings with young people and city cinema – this is the programme of the World Urban Forum in Katowice, which is organised and serviced by Grupa MTP. You can register for the event for free until 25 June.
Grupa MTP won the open tender announced in autumn 2021 and signed an agreement with the Ministry of Funds and Regional Policy and the United Nations Program for Human Settlements, under which it deals with the comprehensive organisation and service of the World Urban Forum WUF11. Grupa MTP is responsible for designing and arranging the existing congress spaces at the ICC in Katowice and the construction of temporary conference, seminar and office rooms, among others for the United Nations. The company also provides the necessary IT infrastructure, audio-video systems and catering.
Extensive programme of events
The substantive part of the WUF11 programme consists of several types of events. These include dialogues, special sessions, workshops and round tables. Their organisers are UN-Habitat, Poland and, above all, external partners selected in an open call. There is a lot to choose from, because there will be nearly 500 such events at the International Congress Centre and the Spodek Arena!
We had a record number of over 1,000 applications when it comes to people willing to organise events. There was no such interest at any of the previous World Urban Forums – says Deputy Minister Jarosińska-Jedynak.
This shows how hot the topic of the future of cities is right now.
During WUF 11, we want to share our experiences related to the over 30-year period of multidimensional transformation, thanks to which we managed to change the character of the city – from an industrial one into a modern business, cultural and service centre. I think it will be valuable knowledge for cities facing this challenge. I am glad that the events organised by our country include a special session on the reconstruction of the community and neighbourhood after war and natural disasters. It is important that we do not forget about the war in Ukraine and are aware of the challenge it is for the whole of Europe – says Marcin Krupa, Mayor of Katowice.
Programme in a nutshell – everything about WUF11
The World Urban Forum will begin and end with ceremonies in a spectacular style, which will combine artistic, entertainment and official elements. Information about the guests and artists who will perform during both ceremonies will be announced in the coming days.
However, ceremonies are not the only occasions to take part in an entertainment event at WUF11. Before the participants of the forum go to the city, they will take part in discussions related to the seven main topics of the event, namely:
- Fair cities
- The green future of cities
- Innovations and Technologies
- Building city resilience
- Planning and city management
- The future of the economy and city finances
- Responding to crises and rebuilding cities
Ecology, equal opportunities for everyone, the participation of residents, and the use of big data and the Internet of Things in city management – these are all top topics that the whole world talks about. This discussion will move to Katowice for a few days. This is a unique opportunity to verify your knowledge about the latest trends and be inspired by ideas from around the world – emphasises Jarosińska-Jedynak. The Deputy Minister adds that the last topic – responding to crises and urban reconstruction – has been added to the forum’s programme at the initiative of Poland and that it will be largely devoted to Ukraine.
In addition to the debates and speeches of experts, the participants will be invited to talks at round tables, networking sessions and workshops. What’s more, everyone can get involved in co-creating the Forum without even being in Katowice! Dozens of events will be held in hybrid form – so we can participate in WUF11 online, even from the farthest corner of the world.
Polish accents at WUF11
At WUF, many attractions will take place in parallel to the main events. It is up to each participant to decide what he or she wants to participate in on a given day of the event. And to what space will Poland invite at WUF11?
The Polish Pavilion will be a large structure with an interesting design, combining traditional features of Polish architecture with contemporary trends. It is a space not only to present Polish achievements, but also to discuss topics important to Poland. Interesting discussions will be held in the Pavilion, for example on the reconstruction of Ukraine after hostilities or the participation of young people in making decisions about actions in cities. This is the time to tell about the history of the transformation of Polish cities and the directions of their development for the future. A mural made by a Polish artist will be created in front of the participants. Everyone will also be able to visit an interactive exhibition about initiatives taken in Polish cities.
Grupa MTP is responsible for the design, construction and maintenance of the Polish Pavilion at WUF11 as well as for the preparation of the concept of the interactive exhibition.
There are few companies in Poland with such a long history and offering such a wide range of industry services as Grupa MTP. We have extensive experience in organising the most important global events and creating a space for international exchange of ideas and conversations. That is why we are glad that we are returning to Katowice once again, where we have been entrusted with the crucial part of the preparations for this unique event – assures Tomasz Kobierski, President of the Management Board of Grupa MTP.
Polish representatives at WUF11 will also initiate talks as part of the European Path, organised under the slogan ‘Transformation of European cities: for a better Europe, for a better world’. It is within this framework that discussions will take place, inter alia, about urban mobility, striving for climate neutrality or problems related to the availability of housing. The idea of the Path – one of the main blocks of the Forum – is to talk about what we can do to inspire the world in European cities to implement changes for a better life in cities.
Poland will also host two special debates. The first, the High-Level Round Table on National Urban Policies in a Changing World, will take place on Monday 27 June. It will be attended by ministers, incl. from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany, Sweden and, of course, Poland, who will show how governments support urban development. The second debate is a special session on community and neighbourhood reconstruction after war and natural disasters, which will take place on Tuesday 28 June.
Only debates? Not necessarily!
A highlight that will definitely attract the attention of WUF participants, but also the inhabitants of Katowice, will be Urban EXPO, a great exhibition where countries, cities, companies and non-governmental organisations will present their promotional pavilions. Thanks to it, participants will be able to get to know and ‘experience’ innovative ideas for cities from around the world.
In addition to the International Congress Centre, there will be numerous concerts, performances by local artists, theatre performances, city cinema and evening dances. ‘Physical education in the City’ assumes 11 thematic zones, scattered on the map of Katowice, but within a few minutes' walk from the ICC. It is there that we will rest, take part in thematic and sports activities.
Programme of events:
Free registration for the event is available at: