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15th "LivCom Awards" 2011 Grandly Start


15th "LivCom Awards" 2011 Grandly Start
 Advocating green development mode, concerning about the urban compatible growth
Perface: The International Awards for Liveable Communities (“The LivCom Awards”) are an international competition endorsed and supported by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and first launched by UNEP and the International Federation of Park and Recreation Administration (IFPRA) in 1997.
The LivCom Awards, globally recognized as the “Green Oscar”, is the World’s only Awards Competition focussing on International Best Practice regarding the management of the local environment, and is currently one of the world’s highest honors in the field of urban construction and community management. The Award evaluates the best liveable mode of cities and communities all over the world on six aspects including Enhancement of the Natural and Built Landscapes, Arts, Culture and Heritage, Public Participation and Empowerment, healthy lifestyle, Environmental Best Practice, and Strategic Planning.
Actively promoting the concept of liveable for fourteen years, forming a global demonstration effect
The LivCom Awards, launched in 1997, has been successfully held for fourth sessions. In the past fourteen years, dozens of international cities, including London, Newcastle, Chicago, Miami, Hawaii, Toronto, Lyon, Lisbon, Melbourne, Tokyo Edogawa, Dubai and Johannesburg have been crowned the "Livable Community" title. In 2000, Shenzhen became the first Chinese city competing in the Awards. In the past 10 years, more than 10 cities including Shenzhen, Xiamen, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Dalian, Guangzhou, Wuxi, Beijing Dongcheng, Shanghai Songjiang, etc and other more than 10 Chinese districts (towns) have also won the LivCom Awards and stepped into the ranks of international well-known cities.
After fourteen years of development, LivCom's benchmark effect has been formed, with extensive worldwide appeal, and a few relatively clear trends have been formed:
Firstly, it expanded from developed countries to developing countries. At the beginning, only developed countries from Europe and the America paid sufficient attention to the Awards, and applying and winning cities were almost monopolized by these countries. Since the Fourth LivCom in 2000, developing countries have gradually increased to participate in it.  By 2009, cities from developing countries accounted for over 60% of the total application for LivCom Awards, especially Chinese cities were widely involved in the events. In 2010, Chinese cities and communities shocked the world with winning 4 gold awards and 4 silver awards.
Secondly, it transmitted from metropolis to small and medium cities. LivCom is different from the other urban environment activities. In the beginning, its main target groups were the big cities with population above 1 million. With the rising influence of competition and the growing popularity of living consciousness, and the broad participation of developing countries, small and medium cities and residential communities bear the brunt, accounting for more than 75% participants.
Thirdly, its international atmosphere at is increasing.  In 2007, Asian Development Bank proposed the “inclusive growth" concept. This concept was widely recognized by the international society, as a refinement and interpretation of the United Nations "sustainability" concept in the economic field. In 2008, UNEP made it the key word of the green proposal in the new era in its "Green New Deal Initiative ". In the coming refined LivCom evaluation criteria in 2010-2011," inclusive growth "concept is going more deeply.
In the 14th LivCom in 2010, a total of more than 100 cities across six continents applied for the Awards, of which developing countries accounted for nearly 80% and more than thirty cities with the population below 10 thousands. The wide response worldwide proved profoundly the widespread international influence of LivCom.
Ten years of LivCom in China, top-tier cities completed a comprehensive participation, and comprehensively outlined the contours of the development in China
In 2000, Shenzhen participated in LivCom Award as the first Chinese city, drawing the world's attention. In the next few years, Guangzhou, Shanghai joined competition. In 2010, Dongcheng District, Beijing, officially announced its participation. During the global final in Chicago, Dongcheng District was awarded three gold awards in the city section, Criteria Awards (Arts, Culture and Heritage) and project section (Nanluoguxiang project), becoming the fist city winning three main awards among the LivCom history.
As the core district of Capital Beijing --- Dongcheng District, its award completed the full participation of the four top-tier cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen in this Green Oscar. It does not only marked the governmental level reorganization and participation of LivCom, but also shows that the sustainable urban development in China has been widely recognized by the international mainstream level.
Reviewing the past ten years participating in LivCom, it started from Shenzhen in 2000 to Guangzhou in 2001, Shanghai in 2005 and Beijing in 2010. In the past 10 years, LivCom crossed South China to North China, and the coastline to inland. It also drew the pattern of the balanced economic development of Chinese cities.
2011, the LivCom Award focus comprehensively on emerging cities in China
With the participation of four top-tier cities, LivCom's development in China will turn to a new track. Recalling the ten year process in China, most were the recognition and praise of the existing achievements. The discovery of emerging cities was weak. With the rise of the Chinese economy, the demands of each city’s international image were more diversified. It becomes the main task of the organizing committee of LivCom China that how to deal with such diverse demands, letting the world know the emerging cities and giving them better opportunities to show the world.
In 2011, the LivCom China Organizing Committee will deeply discuss the "International Liveable Cities Training Programme" together with the LivCom Global Organizing Committee, international experts, United Nations Environment Programme and relevant international sustainable organizations, using the development of the LivCom-winning cities as the models, aiming to train the sustainable development of Chinese emerging cities to realize the compatible development and push more Chinese emerging cities to the world.
On January 17, 2011, the video of Chinese image was played in Times Square. This is the first time Chinese government publicizing its image to the world and it is a confident express of the rising China to the world. In such background, Chinese cities will pay more attention to self-image building, and communication. We look forward to making the world see more Chinese faces and understand Chinese cities through LivCom Award.
Closely follow the international development trend, deepening the evaluation criteria
Since 2010, LivCom has adjusted the city classifications to make sure that cities of different sizes assume social responsibility and compete to their same level competitors correspondingly, as well as to make it more international and universal, in order to adapt the process of urbanization in developing countries. Meanwhile, the revise of the evaluation standards was done and a number of the evaluation criteria were added to make it more scientific.


Previous classificationsunitperson

New classifications

Amini cities



Bsmall cities



Csmall and medium sized cities



DMedium sized cities



Ebig cities and metropolises



(Classifications of LivCom applicant cities)
In 2011, LivCom deepened its criteria again. There are the following main characteristics:
Firstly, it emphasizes the difference between city structure and responsibilities with different population and cultures. The previous criteria focused more on the international modern cities, rather than their cultural backgrounds. Besides the difference between city structure and responsibilities, it specially emphasizes that cities with different population should have the corresponding duties, and should take corresponding measures to ensure liveable environment.
Secondly, it emphasizes the policy guidance. In the previous competition, it focused more on the concrete measures in city landscape, culture, environment, public participation, healthy lifestyles and future planning, and recognized the city's continual development. After the financial crisis, countries around the world became aware the importance of the government guidance and public participation, and strengthened government guidance for public services. LivCom responded to this change, and listed government guiding policy as an evaluation standard for the first time.
Thirdly, it pays attention the guidance meaning of the competition. As LivCom Award has been held for 14 sessions, it continuously adopts the sustainable concept to lead the construction and development of cities through the way of competition, rather than interrupting the development and planning of cities itself.  The update of evaluation rules gradually adds directional indicators and plants the sustainable concept in the urban development and community construction. In 2008, besides the awards to cities and communities, LivCom added the award for contributing persons to praise those stand out in the city's livable construction.
Fourthly, new awards are added. In 2008, the “Personal awards” was added to recognize the outstanding individuals in the liveable city construction. In 2010, the new "socio-economic section” was added and it brought projects, except the natural and built projects, helpful to achieve the liveable goals into competition. According to Mr. Alan Smith, the Secretary-General of the International Organizing Committee, some of the new awards will be added in 2011 to promote the livable construction in full range.
Green Oscar will be hosted by South Korea, and the fifteenth session of the awards opened for official registration
The 15th LivCom will be held between 27th and 31st October 2010 in Seoul, the capital of South Korea. Songpa district of Seoul, the 2009 LivCom Award winner, will be the host city of the grand final. 
Seoul has been the political and economic core in the Korean peninsula, with a strong historical atmosphere and modern feeling. As host to the 1988 Olympic Games, Songpa, Seoul will place hosting this LivCom Award as the same importance as the 1988 Olympic Games. Ms. Park Choon Hee, Mayor of Songpa, expressed in the invitation to all the cities: "In 1988, Songpa has also elevated Korea’s national prestige by hosting the 1988 Olympic Games. At this point, we are proud to announce that we are hosting the LivCom Awards 2011!"
A "Green Olympics" has opened the prelude
The year of 2010 was deemed to be the year of China. In this year, the Chinese economy exceeded Japan as the world's second largest economy after the United States. In the other global stage of environmental development, Chinese cities are also rising ---- Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Xiamen, Shanghai Songjiang, Wenjiang Chengdu, Dalian, Suzhou, Hangzhou ... ... symbols of China began to gradually enter the global view. In the Green Oscar in 2010, Beijing Dongcheng took three awards, and Wuxi, Jiangsu Province ranked the first in the big city level competition. China shows its new appearance in front of the world.
In the beginning of 2011, the Chinese red incarnadined the Times Square in New York and more ignited the eyes of the world! China is stepping in the world confidently, and gradually assumes the responsibilities that a great nation should bear. Who will be the next refulgence creator in the LivCom? 
We will see in Seoul, South Korea in October 2011!
Jia Cui (China) Environmental Promotive Center
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