The research project „Urban Environmental Protection International“ is weighting challenges to protect the environment at the urban level in Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa and Indonesia. The Wuppertal Institute conducts this research by order of the German Federal Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt, UBA).

The aim of the research project is to provide a detailed overview of the importance of environmental issues in urban development in selected countries, and to link the respective knowledge with German approaches. On the one hand, the project searches innovative international approaches which could feed into UBA’s Research Agenda. On the other hand, it identifies areas in which the UBA could consult cities and countries how to strengten their activities to protect the environment at the urban level.

On 5 March 2020, the final conference of the project will take place in Berlin (Beletage Conference Centre) to present and discuss the findings. The final conference will address the need for action and solutions for urban environmental protection in the six countries and present transferability of innovative strategies. In addition, the conference will address the role of the local level for climate and environmental protection in the political multi-level system.

In addition to the research results of the Wuppertal Institute, the conference programme will include contributions from representatives of the partner countries who will present innovative solutions for urban environmental protection and their local context. Representatives of German politics and administration, associations and research institutions are cordially invited to participate in the conference to discuss international approaches to urban environmental protection and to reflect on impacts and scope for action for Germany.

10.00 – 11.00Welcome Plenary
Welcome Address by Dr. Harry Lehmann, German Federal Environment Agency
Keynote by Prof. Manfred Fischedick , President, Wuppertal Institute: The transformative power of cities
Keynote by Prof. Philipp Misselwitz, Habitat Unit, TU Berlin: The United Nations’ role in implementing the New Urban Agenda and the SDGs
11.00-12.45Parallel Session 1: Challenges to protect the urban environment and innovative solutions (presentations and discussions)
Session a) Urban planning and land take

International experts present urban environmental challenges and cross-sectoral solutions:


– Evandro Holz, UN Habitat
– Jiwon Lee, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability
– Angelina Davydova, Journalist in St. Petersburg

Moderation: Dr Frederic Rudolph, Wuppertal Institute
Session b) Mobility and air pollution

International experts present experience to develop urban mobility sustainably in Moscow, Hanoi and Belo Horizonte:


– Eveline Prado Trevisan, Belo Horizonte Transport and Traffic Municipal Company
– Nguyen Thi Thu Hien, University of Transport Technology Hanoi
– Maria Rosa Muñoz Barriga, Wuppertal Institute

Moderation: Alvin Mejia, Wuppertal Institute
13.45-15.15Parallel sessions 2: The governance of urban environmental protection (fishbowl)
Each session opens with a presentation of recent research findings of the Wuppertal Institute. The fishbowl starts with input statements from governmental representatives:
Session a) What can cities do to support their national governments in mitigating climate change?


– Michael Leischner, City of Dortmund
– Emmanuel Asaba Katabarwa, Kigali City

Moderation: Dr Oliver Lah, Wuppertal Institute
Session b) What can the national policy level do to support cities in their efforts to mitigate climate change?


– Marcus Stadthaus, Federal Foreign Office
– Carl Philipp Schuck, German International Cooperation (GIZ)

Moderation: Dr Stephan Bartke, Federal Environment Agency
15.15-15.30 Coffee Break
15.30-16.45Plenary on the governance of urban environmental protection
Reports from the parallel sessions 1 + 2

Comparison of the research project’s results with the sessions’ discussions (Wuppertal Institute)
16.45-17.00Closing words: Relevance for German policy
Alice Schröder, Federal Environment Agency

This event has finished. You may contact frederic(dot)rudolph(at) for more information.

For more information on the research project “Urban Environmental Protection in an International Context: Current State and Outlook” at the Wuppertal Institute, click here.

For more information on the Urban Environmental Protection research at the Umweltbundesamt (UBA), click here.