The 16th Annual Session of Global Forum on Human Settlements & Sustainable Cities And Human Settlements Awards Ceremony (GFHS 2021)

Wednesday, 27 October, 2021 (All day) to Friday, 29 October, 2021 (All day)
Wednesday, 25 August, 2021

The 16th Annual Session of Global Forum on Human Settlements & Sustainable Cities And Human Settlements Awards Ceremony (GFHS 2021)

  • Theme: Accelerate Green Transformation and Innovation towards Healthy, Resilient, and Carbon-neutral Cities
  • Dates: 27-29 October 2021
  • Format: Online Forum+ Live Streaming
  • Register here:


The UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, stressed at the One Planet Summit that “2021 must be the year to reconcile humanity with nature”. “We begin a new year under the sign of hope." 2021 is a crucial year for implementing the "2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" and accelerating carbon-neutral actions at both local and national levels.

Against this background, the 16th Annual Session of Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS 2021) - one of the most important events focusing on sustainable cities and human settlements - will be taking place from October 27 to 29 as an observance of “World Cities Day”, with the theme being “Accelerate Green Transformation and Innovation towards Healthy, Resilient and Carbon-neutral Cities”.

The forum will be organized in a format combining online and offline participation, to address how cities can use green recovery as a golden opportunity to kick-start a green transformation and drive innovation at all levels and across all sectors, thus enhancing urban safety, resilience and inclusiveness, boosting green growth, and achieving coordinated, healthy, and high-quality sustainable urban development.

Dignitaries from numerous countries, senior officials from the UN and concerned international organizations, green city mayors, business leaders, and well-known experts and scholars will be giving keynote speeches and joining thematic discussions. Webcasting and simultaneous translation between Chinese and English will be available to foster interactive dialogues with stakeholders across the globe, and it is expected to reach out to approximately a hundred thousand interested persons.


  1. To facilitate effective conversation and action: The forum aims to provide a valuable global platform for high-level dialogue and for sharing innovative approaches, strategies, technologies, and successful experiences on green recovery and transition.
  2. To strengthen urban safety, inclusiveness, and resilience: The forum seeks to offer practical solutions to how healthy, resilient and carbon-neutral cities should be planned, designed, financed, developed, governed and managed, so as to enhance safety, resilience, inclusiveness, and sustainability in diverse urban systems.
  3. To foster partnership on sustainable development: The forum is designed to strengthen capacity building, cultivate new type partnerships, foster urban innovation, accelerate effective actions, and drive progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, the New Urban Agenda, and Paris Agreement.
  4. To highlight best practices: the forum is expected to recommend a batch of best practices that can serve as role models on green transformation and innovation and sustainable urban development.


  • Healthy, smart, and resilient cities and communities
  • Renewable energy systems and carbon-neutral cities
  • Circular economy and zero-waste cities
  • Nature-based solutions for climate-resilient cities
  • A sustainable blue economy to support the green transformation of cities
  • Urban hydrology and integrated water resources management
  • Green financing for carbon-neutral cities
  • International Green Model City Initiative: creating global pilot demonstration areas of carbon neutrality
  • Blockchain technology and smart city governance
  • World hemp investment and sustainable development
  • Towards future-proof buildings and neighbourhoods
  • Pursuing a resilient, inclusive, gender-equal, and green economic recovery


  • Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS)
  • World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
  • United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
  • United Nations Centre for Regional Development (UNCRD)
  • Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI)
  • World Wildlife Fund (WWF)


  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • UN Economic and Social Commission in Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) (tbc)
  • UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)
  • United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR)
  • United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD) (tbc)
  • Asian Development Bank (ADB) African Development Bank (AfDB)
  • UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP-FI)
  • Swedish Energy Agency (SEA)
  • International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) (tbc)
  • International Ocean Institute (IOI) International Science Council (ISC)
  • International Initiative for a Sustainable Built Environment (iiSBE)
  • Architecture 2030 Habitat For Humanity International (HFHI)
  • Global One Belt One Road Association (GOBA)
  • World Ocean Council (WOC) Universal Peace Federation (UPF)
  • World Association of Non-Governmental Organizations (WANGO)

Learn more here: