3rd Conference of China-Africa Urban Development Forum Held in Cape Coast

[Source]    Confucius Institute at the University of Cape Coast [Time]    2019-10-15 13:54:25 

From October 3rd to 4th, local time, the Third Conference of China-Africa Urban Development Forum was held at the University of Cape Coast in Ghana. The conference, themed on “Towards Building Resilient Cities: Opportunity, Challenges, and Innovation”, was hosted by University of Cape Coast and Hunan City University, and co-organized by the Confucius Institute at the University of Cape Coast. It brought together more than 1,000 experts, scholars and researchers in related fields from universities and research institutes in China, Ghana, Nigeria and Barbados. The attendees of the forum’s opening ceremony included Hon Thomas-Baffoe, Deputy Central Regional Minister in Ghana, F. E. Amuquandoh, Dean of College of Humanities and Legal Studies of the University of Cape Coast, Wang Shiting, Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, and Lei Cunxi, Vice President of Hunan City University.

Wang Shiting, in his speech, said that China had achieved obvious achievements in economic development and urbanization, and was willing to share its successful experience of urban development with African countries. He introduced successful examples of sustainable urbanization in China. With China’s experience in solving urban transport problems, he elaborated on such topics as transport and urbanization of Ghana. Also, he made a brief introduction about Chinese government scholarship, and encouraged Ghanaian students to learn Chinese well to gain, if diligent enough and excellent academically, an opportunity to further their studies in China.

Wang Shiting delivering a speech

Lei Cunxi noted that though both Ghana and China were developing countries, as China had explored the mode of urban development while Ghana’s urban development started late and progressed poorly, thus enjoying much potential, Ghana could learn from China’s experience in urban development. He also wished that Ghana could develop its cities into unique and smart ones.

Lei Cunxi delivering a speech

Hon Thomas-Baffoe emphasized the role of increasing educational attainment in urbanization. He noted that Ghana would develop education with great efforts to promote urbanization.

Hon Thomas-Baffo delivering a speech

During this two-day conference, scholars, representatives and experts from China and Africa got together to exchange ideas on China-Africa cooperation in urbanization. Focusing on problems relating to building urban resilience, they offered solutions to challenges in urban development and advice for the realization of the strategic goal of building urban cities featuring inclusiveness, security, adaptation and sustainability.

During the keynote speech presentation, Gong Guangcai, a professor of Hunan University, gave one entitled “Assessment of Urban Photovoltaic Availability Based on Optimized Distributed PV-ASHP System: A Case Study of Shaoshan City”. His novel ideas aroused heated discussion among participants.

Gong Guangcai delivering a keynote speech

The four parallel sessions respectively themed on "Urban Culture and Livelihoods", "Urban Transport, Leisure and Entertainment", "Climate Change Mitigation and Renewable Energy Development", "Environment and Health". 40 experts presented their ideas from such perspectives as urban resilience, sponge city, transformation of urban communication mode, urban landscape, research on urban resilience in Africa, coping with climate changes, recycling urban construction waste, urban ecological civilization, and historical comparison of urbanization between China and Africa. These presentations fully demonstrated the new concepts and ideas of contemporary urban development.

Chu Beijuan, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at the University of Ghana, presided over the parallel session themed on "Urban Culture and Livelihoods", and made a presentation on "Urban Images in 19th Century Western Novels". Chu said that in the Western novels in the19th century, a lot of urban backgrounds could be found, such as Paris mentioned in Balzac's novels and London in Dickens's. These cities were not only geological concepts, but also economic, cultural and political symbols. As they appeared in literary works as an image, we could explore their far-reaching significance through the people and stories in these cities.

Chu Beijuan giving a lecture

Hu Liangcai, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at the University of Cape Coast, presided over the parallel session themed on "Environment and Health". During the session, Liao Yu-mei, a teacher from the Confucius Institute at the University of Cape Coast, elaborated on the close relationship between sports and urban development in her presentation on "On the Symbiotic Development of Sports and Urban Development Based on Ecological Civilization".

Liao Yu-mei giving a lecture

The China-Africa Urban Development Forum aims to provide a platform for researchers in fields related to urban development to exchange the latest academic achievements, share urban construction experience and insights, and create a new blueprint benefiting people's livelihood.