Bratislava, Slovakia (Nov. 8, 2021) – On the heels of the COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow and amid worsening economic and health conditions related to a COVID-19 spike in Europe, almost 1000 participants are expected to attend the virtual Europe Housing Forum to discuss how housing intersects with climate change, health and the economy.
“Habitat for Humanity believes that addressing the housing shortage sits at the heart of solutions to the greatest challenges facing Europe and the entire world today,” said Jonathan Reckford, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “The residential construction sector creates many jobs and can help rebuild economies hit hard by the pandemic. Working together, civil society and nongovernmental actors can make sure that vulnerable groups and the informal sector are included in both economic recovery plans and efforts to ensure housing is more resilient to climate change.”
The importance of housing as a driver of economic growth and sustainability in human settlements will be one of the central discussions during the forum. The Europe Housing Forum brings together different stakeholders from the private and public sectors, practitioners and academia to discuss solutions to complex housing problems in the region and globally.
Featured speakers of the forum include: Gergely Karácsony, mayor of Budapest; deputy mayor of Paris for housing Ian Brossat; Estrella Durá-Ferrandis, member of the European Parliament from Spain; and Kadri Simson, the European Commissioner for Energy, among many others. Speaking to the forum video addresses will be: Her Royal Highness Princess Lamia Bint Majed Saud AlSaud, secretary general and board member at Alwaleed Philanthropies; Maimunah Mohd Sharif, executive director of the United Nations Human Settlement Programme, or UN-HABITAT; and Habitat for Humanity’s Reckford.
Finalists for the 2021 European Housing Innovation Awards, who are competing in the shelter technology, inspirational practices and public policy categories, will also present at the forum. Contest awards are sponsored by the Hilti Foundation, Whirlpool Corporation and Habitat for Humanity.
Sessions at the forum will range from roundtables to panels and workshops with housing experts, policymakers, business leaders, urban planners, donor agencies and youth organizations. The forum is organized by Habitat for Humanity International with input from more than a dozen partner organizations such as UN-HABITAT, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, or UNECE, European Investment Bank, Housing Europe, the city of Vienna, Cities Alliance, and the International Union of Tenants among others. Lead financial sponsorship was provided by the Hilti Foundation and Whirlpool Corporation as well as support from the Somfy Foundation and Wienerberger.
More information, including how to register, is available on the forum’s website. The event is part of a series of housing forums in 2021 that included the fourth Latin American and the Caribbean Housing Forum in May and the eighth Asia-Pacific Housing Forum to take place in December.