I am Participating at the Urban Futures Conference in 2021 (Auckland) as a Panellist on: Smartness vs sustainability panel: Perspective from urban environmentalist

Privilege to attend alongside some very well known Urbanists, Planners, Academics and Engineers

I have been invited to attend the 2021 Urban Futures Conference that will be held at the AUT Events Centre in February 2021. Below is some information about the conference.

Urban Futures Conference 2021 – Auckland

Urban Futures brings together cross-disciplinary perspectives from urban design, architecture, academics and technology to open up variable standpoints for interactive discussion on the most recent innovations, trends and concerns as well as practical challenges encountered, and solutions adopted in urban planning.

Urban Futures Conference and Heritage, Place and Identity Conference are co-located. Delegates attending the Urban Futures Conference may also attend sessions of the Heritage, Place and Identity Conference, taking place on the 23 February.

This conference focuses on the following themes:

  • Economy, industry and planning
  • Spotlight on legislation
  • Urban mobility and design
  • Resilience, sustainability and climate change
  • Alternative housing ownership models and supply
  • Communities and wellbeing
  • Smart cities and revolutionary technologies

Who will be there?

  • Policy Regulators (local and government)
  • Planners
  • Architects
  • Landscape Architects
  • Developers
  • Engineers
  • Surveyors
  • Politicians
  • Consultants
  • Academics
  • Advocacy Groups


I will be a Panellist on Day 2 of the Conference itself. The Topic and the fellow panellists I am with are as below:

Day 2 – 4.20pm: Smartness vs sustainability panel: Perspective from urban environmentalist

  • Who should shape our digital future?
  • How best can we use data and technology to improve mobility?
  • What role should government play to ensure best outcomes for the public around privacy, equity and sustainability?

Ben RossSpatial Planner and Human Experience Engineer, cOlab and Associates
Jenn BendenTeam Leader Placemaking – NZ/Queensland, Jacobs
Zoe EatherCEO, My Smart Community (Australia)
*Host – The Smart Community Podcast
Greer O’Donnell, Director and Urban Strategist, The Urban Advisory

I am deeply honoured to be up there with some of the international best in the terms of Planning and Urbanism. It will be fun and thought-provoking discussion especially if we have been picking up titbits of knowledge and wisdom from the duration of the conference.

None-the-less the entire conference will be a cracker and one to attend as the world continues to grapple with Covid and for some Post Covid!


🤔 With experience in Human Experience Engineering, Urban Planning, Urbanism, Regional Planning and Land Use Planning (Spatial Analysis/Planning), I have been at the forefront of advocacy of improving such human experience in transit, urban design and spatial form for Southern Auckland.

🏙️From large urbanism projects like Our Manukau and Airport to Botany Rapid Transit to smaller place making projects such as street calming, parklets and bus lanes. I strive in building relationships with decision/policy makers, fellow urbanists, and those who dream of wanting their urban area to be one of a human experience not a human drama – which is even more critical than ever in the Post Covid era.

🔹As a Spatial Planner my mission is: to bring the Human Experience Engineering in all things Transit CX/UX, Urban Design, and Spatial Planning.

🔹 I have also recently completed certification in Tactical Urbansim through the University of Amsterdam (via Coursea) bringing skill sets in how to plan, build support, implement and review tactical urbanism projects large or small.

✅With the continued rise of Human Scale and the 15 Minute City I will be there as a Human Experience Engineer and Spatial Planner advocating for cities being a human experience not human drama!

👉🏼I am the Vice President Public Relations for MCBC Toastmasters, and Area O2 Director for District 112 Toastmasters New Zealand North looking after six Clubs.

🏙️ Panellist to the 2021 Urban Futures Conference https://www.conferenz.co.nz/events/urban-futures#

Speaking at Council