Oslo Urban Arena invites speakers from all over the world. Get inspired by the worlds best innovators.

From London: Nick Searl
Partner, Argent LLP

Learning from King's Cross

Nick is a Partner of both Argent and Argent Related. Having spent almost 10 years working on King’s Cross, his main priority was leading the commercial team dealing with definition, strategy, leasing and management of the office and retail components. Nick now leads Argent Related’s 10 million sq ft Brent Cross South development in north London.


From Lagos: OluTimehin Adegbeye
Writer and activist

Inclusive Cities

The biggest problem facing cities today is not the rising rate of urbanisation, but rather the refusal of policy makers to adopt collaborative and responsive models of urban administration. This position is untenable regardless of its reasons for existing; be it intellectual and practical distance from the most pressing issues, power-mongering and personal interest, structural problems within governance that make long-term planning difficult, or a complicated combination of the above. 

From New York: Mike Lydon
CEO, Street Plans Collaborative

Tactical Urbanism: Short-Term Action for Long-Term Change

In Norway there keeps coming up temporary measures to help the cityscape. In Oslo projects like "Carfree citylife", Salt, Vippa and Future Farmers in Bjørvika will help stimulate the use of the city infrastructure and create usable spaces. For these things to have the highest impact possible it is important that they help contribute to to culture of the city and how the people use it. Mike Lydon is the father of pop-up urbanism and is passionate about how these temporary solutions can result in permanent change and development of the urban city life.


From Lubljana: Tjasa Ficko
Deputy Mayor of the City of Ljubljana

'LJUBLJANA – European Green Capital 2016. Changing vs. Preserving. Mastering the balance.'

Oslo will be European Green Capital in 2019. Earlier cities being given this title has in varying degrees managed to get it's citizens to create sustainable changes. Tjasa Ficko was responsible when Ljubljana was European Green Capital in 2016 and will talk about how this title can be used to help gain traction and inspire change towards a green revolution and at the same time succeed in international exposure.

From Copenhagen: Torben Klitgaard
Hub Director, Bloxhub

Co-creating resilient cities

BLOXHUB is Denmarks new base for the future of city planning with a co-working space in the heart of Copenhagen. With over 550 officespaces they develop better city solutions before they are scaled up and expanded into the world. Behind BOXHUB is Reldania, Copenhagen Muncipality and "Erhvervs - og Vækstministeriet".

From Shanghai: Mariela Alfonzo
CEO, State of Place

Data-driven citymaking: Using evidence-based design to reclaim our streets

State of Place is a unique blend of Jan Gehls passion for the life between buildings and Spacemakers AI-tehnology. It is a predictive analytics software. Mariela Alfonzo, CEO and co-founder of State of Place is a placeoholic and has over 15 years of expertise in the field of urban design, behavior research and placemaking. In 2014, Mariela was recognized as one of Urban Land Institute’s 40 under 40 best young land use professionals around the globe.


From Amsterdam: Nadine Galle
Consultant, Metabolic

Circular Cities

Nadine Galle has been named one of the Netherlands's most important young change agents in the field of sustainability. As a sustainability consultant at Metabolic, her work includes mapping urban metabolisms and developing evidence-based interventions for circular cities and high-impact sectors. Nadine Galle will share with us how cities can develop, be circular and in layers with nature.

From Oslo: Olav Line
CEO, Mustad Eiendom

Why demolish a gold mine?

Why chop up one of Norway's largest and well functioning shopping malls? A clear vision for the real estate project “Lilleakerbyen”, close to the transit hub Lysaker, is to give the people the town center they can't identify today. Do the opposite of the existing environment: Wrap the shopping mall inside out, and build according to the Danish architect Jan Gehl’s principles: “First life, then spaces, then buildings – the other way around never works.” 

From Barcelona: Mateu Hernandez
CEO, Barcelona Global

Innovation in urban tourism

Overtourism became a new word in the dictionary in 2017, when people of Barcelona took to the streets to state that terrorism didn't kill their city, tourism did. Barcelona Global got the responsibility to find a solution, and held their first global summit on the issue in March this year. Mateu Hernandez will tell us how tourism in the city can be a blessing and not a curse.


From Malmö: Åsa Samuelsson Architect, Nyréns Arkitektkontor

Equalizer - a tool for equal and inclusive activity spaces

In the Equalizer research project, we focus on the city's various activity spaces where girls are heavily underrepresented. Why is that? What prevents the girls to be active in these spaces? And what can we do about it?

From Tokyo: Yuki Ikeguchi
Partner, Kengo Kuma and Associates

Element of nature, in between buildings

It's been my keen interest how the architecture can be generated with the elements of nature in urban scene. In both projects mentioned above the architectural design are created with the elements of nature such as water and vegetation in full extent, and they are to respond to the project theme as well as to link the various surrounding urban context.