Keynote Speakers & Medalist

Wei-Ning Xiang

 Wei-Ning Xiang is a National Distinguished Professor at the East China Normal University, Shanghai, China. He is the founder and director of the Global Institute for Urban and Regional Sustainability (GIURS), and directs the Shanghai Key Lab for Urban Ecological Processes and Eco-Restoration (SHUES). He received his BS degree in geography from Beijing Normal University, a masters degree in regional planning from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and a doctorate in city and regional planning from the University of California at Berkeley.

Dr. Xiang joined the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 1990, and became a Professor of Geography and Earth Sciences in 2001. His scholarly activities have been found in the areas of landscape and land use planning, geographic information science, spatial modeling, and recently sustainable development in China. His scholarly contributions appeared in International Journal of Geographic Information Science, Environment and Planning B, Journal of Environmental Management, and Landscape and Urban Planning.

Dr. Xiang was a research fellow at a number of research institutions, including the Institute of Urban and Regional Development (IURD) at Berkeley, the National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis (NCGIA) at Santa Barbara, USA. He is the Co-Editor-in-Chief of Landscape and Urban Planning.

Keynote Talk
“With Black Swans and Wicked Problems We Live and Plan”

The first thirteen years of the new millennium witnessed a worldwide surge of black swans–rare and unpredictable events of extreme impact and profound repercussions: the Great Smog of 2013 in Beijing, Hurricane Sandy (2012), the Great East Japan Earthquake (2011), the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, the global financial crisis (2007-2008), Hurricane Katrina (2005), the 2003 SARS pandemic, and the September 11 attacks (2001), to list just a few. The occurrence of these devastating large scale events often intertwines with the presence of wicked problems–ill-defined issues of high intractability, such as those pertaining to global climate change, sustainability, urbanization, public health, poverty, resource management, and terrorism. As such, we, the homo sapiens, increasingly find ourselves in a jungle of great mess where the frequent appearance of black swans and the ubiquity of wicked problems are the norm, while their humanly acquainted counterparts, white swans and tame problems, only stand out as a deviation. In a world that is growingly urbanized and complexly connected, this still emerging circumstance presents a steep challenge toward our survival, health, and well-being.

What do all these mean to planning in general and landscape planning in particular? What strategies should we, the planners, take in our practice of sustainability planning inside the jungle of black swans and wicked problems? How well would some of the existing or emerging theoretical and practical frameworks, such as urban resilience and eco-cites, fare with respect to the jungle dynamics? In this presentation, I explore these questions from a comparative perspective drawing upon examples and experiences from around the world, particularly the United States and China.


Jack Ahern

Jack Ahern, Ph.D., FASLA, FCELA, Vice Provost for International Programs and Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture & Regional Planning, University of Massachusetts Amherst.  Ahern holds a BS in Environmental Design (Massachusetts), a MLA (Pennsylvania) and a Ph.D., Environmental Sciences (Wageningen, Netherlands). Registered and Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), and Fellow of the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA), Ahern has received numerous awards for his work in applied landscape ecology and greenways, including a Fulbright Research Fellowship in Portugal, and Honour Awards from the American Society of Landscape Architects and the Boston Society of Landscape Architects for his focuses on the integration and application of landscape ecology in landscape books and research.  His current research is in planning and design, with emphasis on green infrastructure, greenways, and sustainable urbanism ­ at multiple scales.

His authored and co-authored books include: Measuring Landscapes: A Planner¹s Handbook (2006) Biodiversity Planning and Design: Sustainable Practices (2006) Greenways as Strategic Landscape Planning: Theory and Application (2002); A Guide to the Landscape Architecture of Boston (1999); Greenways: the Beginning of an International Movement (1995).

Keynote Talk
“Landscape Planning in the Century of the City: an international

The 21st Century has already witnessed an unprecedented milestone at which the world’s population became predominately urban – for the first time in history. More importantly, the global percentage of urbanization is predicted to increase to 75% by mid-century. The provision of ecosystem services to support sustainability in these 21st Century cities will bring both familiar and new challenges for landscape planning. Familiar challenges include protection of critical resources, management of land use change, and sustainable use of renewable resources.  New challenges include, differential demographic contexts – from shrinking cities to rapidly expanding metropolis, managing agricultural land use to feed the planet, and adapting existing and new cities to the effects of climate change and raising sea levels.  Innovative responses to these challenges from around the world will be presented.

IMG_8864M. Teresa L. Andresen
Fábos Award Medalist, 2013

M. Teresa L. ANDRESEN, landscape architect, full professor at Porto University School of Sciences, Portugal.  Phd in Sciences Applied to the Environment, University of Aveiro, Portugal, 1992. Master of Landscape Architecture, University of Massachusetts, USA, 1984. Degree in Agronomy and in Landscape Architecture Lisbon Technical University, Portugal.1982.

Member of the National Council for the Environment and Sustainable Development, since 2012. Porto Botanical Garden, Director, since 2007. Responsible for the installation of the Landscape Architecture programme at Porto University School of Sciences in 2001.

International Federation of Landscape Architects, Vice-President, 2007. European Foundation for Landscape Architecture, President, 2004-07. European Environment Agency, Member of the Scientific Committee, 2002 – 2008; Vice President, 2008. Institute of Nature Conservation of Portugal, President, 1996-98. Portuguese Association of Landscape Architects, President, 1992-94.

Coordinator of the Assessment Study for the Alto Douro Wine Region, World Heritage Site, 2012-13. Coordinator of the project A park network for Porto Metropolitan Region, 2007-2009. Coordinator of the project Regional Structure for the Protection and Environmental Qualification of Portugal Northern Region, 2006 -07.


Major publications:

AA.VV., Jacques Gréber. Arquitecto de jardins e urbanista. Urbanist and Garden Designer. Fundação de Serralves, 2011 (Ed. Teresa Andresen, M. Fernandes de Sá and João Almeida) pp 319

AA.VV,, From the National Stadium to the Gulbenkian Garden. Francisco Caldeira Cabral and the first generation of Portuguese landscape architects (1940-1970). Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian. Lisboa, 2003. (Ed. Teresa Andresen). pp. 320

Andresen, T., Francisco Caldeira Cabral, Landscape Design Trust Monograph Series. Surrey , U.K.  2001. pp. 214

Andresen, T. e Marques, T. Portela, Jardins Históricos do Porto, Edições INAPA, 2001. pp. 157











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