congress team
Lorraine Gonzales (USA) Alexander Antonov (Russia)

Al-Souq is the Arabic word for the marketplace. It typically denotes a traditional open-air marketplace connected by an intricate and winding series of narrow alleyways. Traditionally, souqs are highly dense in both storefronts, merchants, and customers. Not only is it a venue for the buying and selling of goods, but they are also the beating hearts of cities in the Arab world. They were venues for sharing the latest news on what was going on locally and regionally, as well as a public space for residents of the city to socialize. The souq is a node for the exchange of goods and ideas from across the world, as goods and merchants from the Indian Subcontinent, Iran, and the African East Coast were commonplace in the souq, it illustrates the extent of which the region and Qatar was always a part of a globalized world. 

Changes in planning are evident as we assess the history of planning. Planning fifty years ago was developed based on the prerogative of professionals and municipal and government officials. The format was linear and planning for long-term outcomes was accompanied with implementation strategies. The basis of the plan was predicated on perceived changes, unpredictable circumstances and private initiatives, which presented difficulties to achieve a predefined result. Today planning has evolved to a more deformalized structure that depends on community input to assess a community's values, diversities and needs. There is a focus to create an inclusionary and transparent planning process with procedural flexibility. Metrics are needed to measure a plan's success and to modify the plan due to future fluctuating influences such as sustainable needs, climate change, and smart city growth 

Today's planning relies on technologyaa growing and necessary trend. This trend leads us into a world of digitalised infrastructures, it expedites the distribution and dissemination of information, creates opportunities to develop a strong network of partnerships within a city, strengthens operations within governments, and aligns communication among businesses, citizens, and non-profit organisations. There is a need to explore technology as it integrates smart cities and to assess its barriers, policies, management, benefits, tools and its influences on urban form and function. 

In addition to the local level, planning on a global level ensures a diverse and stable economy. Financial investors actively influence projects and planning decisions to create a diverse economy. Given this awareness there is an undeniable benefit to actively collaborate with financial institutions, development partners, and other entities. Such collaborations would serve to develop pragmatic regulations and strategies that enable long range plans to come to fruition, to create a stable economy that supports global and local markets and needs, and to help communities in avoiding the downfall of a blighted existence; the growth-ism and de-growth scenario 


  • Data and data analysis and IT applications for planning  

  • "Deformalisation" in planning routine, changes in planning documents and rules 

  • Plan implementation, metrics, and monitoring-tools 

  • Technical and market strategies for innovative planning  

  • Collaboration in planning 

  • Planning education for citizens, investors, and officials 

  • Global planning for local markets 

  • Economic programs and spatial planning for cities and community 

  • Planning and economics - financing planning 

  • Smart planning, smart implementation, smart governance  

  • Technology and computer platforms  

This track's priority is focused on case studies as opposed to theoretical submittals. The intent is to provide our professional colleagues with tools that have been tested and outcomes are known, and what are proven effective measuring tools will determine probable outcomes. Let's discuss smart planning that meets technologies issues, multiple purposesfast changes and sudden challenges. Smart planning requires new governance, financing and implementation technologies involving joint efforts by communities, stakeholders and officials. 

During the track sessions, roundtables and workshops we will consider advanced planning practices taking into account economics and financing, climate change, big data analysis, city branding and positioning, participatory instruments. 

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