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The Summit

The RICS World Built Environment Forum Summit reconvenes in London in 2018. These two days of cutting edge debates will focus on the commercial strategies needed to harness the enormous potential of the 21st century’s people and places.

MON 23 APR 2018
08:00 - 17:00
Event ends on 24 April 2018
InterContinental London — The O2, 1 Waterview Drive, London, SE10 0TW


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Under the programme title of ‘Our Changing World — Urbanisation, Innovation and Civilisation’, this Summit looks at the three driving forces of industrial transformation, urbanisation and digitalisation, and their profound impacts on the planet’s natural and built environment.


Key themes:

  • How development of collaborative infrastructure, trade and knowledge networks can generate inclusive wealth and wellbeing and inspire deeper regional economic co-dependencies
  • The nature and scope of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the role of intelligent technology in driving productivity across both deindustrialised and industrialising global regions
  • Competition and co-operation between cities and regions in pursuit of greater prosperity and economic versatility, enhanced public health and welfare, and improved levels of liveability and environmental sustainability

This two-day programme, developed in collaboration with internationally renowned and respected industry figures, will explore the transformative impact of digitalisation on business models and the consequences for cities and the regions around them.

Programme: Monday 23 April 2018

  • 08:00 Registration and refreshments

  • 09:00 Summit opening: Global Voices from the RICS Survey of Built Environment Leaders

    The RICS Survey of Built Environment Leaders ranks the issues at the forefront of leaders’ minds, from the unique perspective of the built environment sector. We highlight their priorities and reasons for optimism or concern, with contributions from our sponsors, chair, and RICS President John Hughes FRICS.


    • James Chau, Broadcaster


  • 09:30 Keynote address

  • 10:10 Digital Innovation, Inclusive Infrastructure and Structural Transformation

    What are the likely impacts of digitalisation on a developed world undergoing deindustrialisation, and on developing nations as they industrialise? This session will explore how emerging technologies are influencing national and supranational economies; the connection between transnational infrastructure, automation and economic output, the impact of improved physical and digital connectivity on global trade and labour markets; and the ethical and practical questions posed by artificial intelligence and machine learning.


    • Guy Grainger, EMEA CEO, JLL
    • Jonathan Ballon, Vice President and Group Manager – Internet of Things, Intel Corporation
    • Didier Bonnet, Senior Vice President and Global Practice Leader – Digital Transformation, Capgemini Consulting


  • 11:20 Networking refreshment break

  • A shift from automated production to automated decision making processes characterises the fourth industrial revolution. These breakout sessions will consider the fundamental economic realignments underway across the globe.

    12:00 Cities in the Changing Ecosystems of Industry and Commerce

    As entire industries are reshaped in the fourth industrial age, successful cities must adapt. Businesses are significantly less reliant on the location of natural resources and mass labour than at any point in the last two centuries. New economic and business models can help cities address growing pressures on space, resources and vital services. Reflecting on the benefits and costs of  on-demand, peer-to-peer, shared and circular economic models, the session will consider the implications for employers and employees of decentralised production and service delivery models, and how cities should respond.


    • Rohan Pradhan, Vice President, Deliveroo and Global Head, Deliveroo Editions
    • Karuna Gopal, President, Foundation for Futuristic Cities
    • Chris Choa, Vice President and Global Principal - Cities and Development, AECOM

    12:00 Clustering to Compete: Nurturing Innovation for Prosperity and Security

    This panel will assess how clusters and specialisation hubs can boost regional economic prosperity. How can urban design, local skills bases, and public policy combine to establish optimal conditions for clusters that are attractive to investors? How can clusters accelerate the innovations needed to address the most pressing issues facing the built environment?


    • Andreas Svenungsson, Senior Vice President, Volvo Group
    • Christian Ketels, Chief Economist, Boston Consulting Group
    • Prof Richard Templer, Director of Innovantion at Grantham Insititute, Imperial College London


  • 13:15 Networking lunch and exhibition (Summit participants)

  • 14:30 Remaining Relevant: Anticipating and Harnessing Disruptive Change

    By 2014, 52% of Fortune 500 companies active in 2000 had been either liquidated or acquired by competitors. This session will challenge participants to imagine the scope and nature of disruption both in a developed world and emerging economies context. How will businesses remain relevant and what business models risk obsolescence?


    • Taylor Wescoatt, Founder, Concrete VC


  • 15:15 The Trillion-Dollar Question: Global Investment Risk Landscape

    Ten years on from the onset of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), join senior investment figures from around the globe for an interactive discussion on the current conditions and possible scenarios in investment markets. This panel of expert practitioners from RICS’ Investment Risk Forum is the only group of its kind, bringing together Chief Investment Officers and Chief Risk Managers from leading institutional investors, responsible for more than US$1tn of assets under management.


    • Martin J Brühl FRICS, Chief Investment Officer, Union Investment Real Estate (Chair)
    • Philip Barrett, Managing Director and Global Head of Business and Investment Operations, PGIM
    • Tony Brown, Chief Investment Officer, M&G Real Estate
    • Russell Chaplin MRICS, Chief Investment Officer, Property, Aberdeen Asset Management
    • Christoph Geiβler, Chief Finance Officer and Chief Investment Officer, Capital BAY GmbH
    • Nadja de Jager, Chief Investment Risk Officer, CBRE Global Investment Partners


  • 16:30 Chair’s closing remarks and day one close


    • James Chau, Broadcaster
  • 19:00-21:00 Networking dinner and drinks reception

Programme: Tuesday 24 April 2018

  • 08:00 Breakfast, networking and registration (summit participants)

  • 09:00 Chair’s opening remarks


    • James Chau, Broadcaster
  • 09:10 Global Cities: Common Future Agendas

    Leading cities are increasingly defined in terms of their global connectivity. This session looks at the key attributes of those cities best-placed to succeed in the 21st Century.


    • Greg Clark CBE, Chairman, The Business of Cities Chairman, The Business of Cities Ltd, HonProf UCL City Leadership Lab
    • Maria Vassilakou, Vice Mayor and Vice Governor of City of Vienna
    • Uma Adusumilli, Chief Planner, Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority
    • Ingela Lindh, City Director, City of Stockholm and CEO, Stockholms Stadshus AB


  • 10:30 Networking refreshment break

  • 11:15 Smart, Open Source Cities: Enabling Infrastructure

    Smart, open source cities offer benefits to businesses and citizens through participation and collaboration in planning and managing urban environments. Smart cities in the developed and emerging world, must deal with wider access to technology, digital “leapfrogging”, and implications such as new models for delivering public services. Our panel of experts will also discuss strategies to mitigate systemic cyber vulnerabilities.


    • Sascha Haselmayer, CEO, Citymart

    11:15 Collaborating to compete: Cities as Growth Engines

    With many investors exclusively targeting urban areas, people and businesses are relocating accordingly. Consequently, cities, rather than countries, are increasingly seen as the world’s primary engines of growth, with competition among them for investment and talent intensifying.

    This discussion will focus on how cities can compete on a global scale, with panellists arguing that it is only by building on complementary strengths, that cities and regions can attract international direct investment. Covering smart densification and placemaking, issues of social inclusion and the need to innovate and to attract innovators, the session will illustrate the tangible benefits of collaboration among cities.


    • Lisette van Doorn, Europe CEO, Urban Land Institute  
    • Andrew Rose, CEO, Global Infrastructure Investor Association
  • 12:30 Power lunch: Profiting from the low-carbon transition (invitation only)


    12:30 Networking lunch and exhibition (summit participants)


    • Michael Sheren, Bank of England
  • 13:45 A Time for Action

    What kind of civilization do we want? An interactive session that makes connections between the learning of two days of the Summit and asks how all actors in the built environment can jointly shape responsible commercial approaches to create the built environment that society needs.


    • Martin Wolf, Chief Economics Correspondent, Financial Times
    • Vivek Nanda, CEO, Hinduja Investment & Project Services and Board Member, UK India Biusiness Council and Executive Director, Oxford India Centre for Sustainable Development
    • Khoo Teng Chye, Executive Director, Centre for Liveable Cities
    • Lisa Picard, CEO and President, Equity Office
  • 15:00 Networking refreshment break

  • 15:30 Closing keynote: Urbanisation, Infrastructure and Digitalisation in 21st Century India

    Looking to the World Built Environment Forum: Summit Mumbai, this session will focus on the country’s extraordinary growth and the implications for its cities. The Indian government has pursued a policy of political decentralisation and continues to incentivise innovation through its Smart Cities competition. Against this backdrop, we assess the challenges and opportunities apparent in the task of transforming India into a leading 21st century urbanised economy.

  • 16:15 Chair’s closing remarks and conference close


    • James Chau, Broadcaster

Venue directions

The hotel is located on the Greenwich Peninsula, just 400m from North Greenwich Tube Station on the Jubilee Line, which now boasts a 24-hour operation.

Highlights from 2017

The 2017 Summit was attended by 700 professionals from 75 cities and featured 53 speakers engaging in agenda-setting debate sessions. Watch the highlights video to get a feel of the buzz at the event.