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18 May 2012 / merehutch

Our Urban Futures Competition in the works!

Democracy does not end at the ballot, it continues with citizen participation in shaping our cities – sharing ideas and debating about the more granular issues including the use of physical spaces, housing and land management, city governance, services, etc. In an effort to highlight underrepresented issues, spur discussion, and showcase the innovative ideas and vision of urban planners, students, and concerned citizens – CairofromBelow will be holding an international ideas competition called “Our Urban Futures.”

We are in the process of finalizing the details, but encourage you to start thinking about cross-cutting ideas and tools that promote participatory planning and strengthen democratic practices in the evolving urban fabric of Cairo. Themes may include public spaces, empowering/supporting communities, historic sites/tourism, innovations in Cairo’s transportation, public infrastructure and land use. There will be prizes for top submissions and a panel of experts to provide feedback, advice and support. We hope to provide everyone involved with opportunities to further develop their ideas, and collaborate and network with colleagues and activists.

Additionally, we are working with partners to build a participatory planning digital tool that will allow any interested Cairene to locate proposed solutions to urban challenges on an online map.

We look forward to seeing how the proposals take shape. Please feel free to use the comments function to brainstorm ideas now while we finalize the rules of “Our Urban Futures” competition. The project is in conjunction with the Earth Institute Center for Sustainable Urban Development, Megawra, Urbanics and several other organizations and blogs, but we are still actively recruiting additional sponsors and partners and ask that interested parties contact us through the website, FB or

Stay tuned for updates!

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