The World Cities World Class University (WC2) Network brings together top universities located in the heart of major world cities to address culture, environment and political issues of common interest to world cities. WC2 aims to advance understanding and recognition of the role of universities in world cities and issues that are of common interest to them, both locally and internationally. The flow of staff, students and information domestically and across borders contributes to a more comprehensive understanding of world cities, their universities and their potential to impact and aid each other.
The WC2 network was established in September 2010 by City, University of London and currently has 10 member institutions.
For more information, please, visit WC2 official web-site.
Dates: July 28th to August 2nd, 2019.
Host University: Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University, St. Petersburg, Russia
The core topic of the 2019 WC2 Symposium is «Smart Cities and Digital Society».
The 2019 Symposium will address the key challenges of the society as in the modern global world as well as in the largest cities digitalization and smart city issues are of an extreme importance.
The Symposium is primarily open to faculty, graduate and PhD students at WC2 member universities.
2019 Theme topic: Technological advances in healthcare and their clinical applications.
The health Club will focus on the theoretical underpinnings, use and applications of healthcare technology in research and clinical practice. Students and faculty will have the opportunity to present their work in this area and we will share research and practice in technological healthcare advances across different settings, context and countries. The week will also include visits to rehabilitation and medical centres. During this week, we will explore levels of research and knowledge development and progression from scientific enquiry and laboratory work to more applied science, knowledge mobilization and evidence based practice/medicine. Students will be asked to prepare a piece of work before the symposium, and present this work to the group. A selection of recommended readings will be provide to assist with this exercise and will provide valuable background information to the main themes to be discussed during the week.
Students are asked to choose ONE of the following topics for presentation at the symposium. Each presentation will be 20 minutes in length and will include a short introductory synopsis (around 5 minutes) of the student, their research, and the remaining time should be given to their work on one of the following topics:
2019 Theme topic
In its commitment to addressing the global issue of environmental management and the challenges of climate change, the goal of the Eco-Campus Group of WC2 is to develop a “Zero Emissions Urban University Model.”
The Eco-Campus Group framework for the 2019 Symposium in Saint-Petersburg will focus on effective urban planning and master plan strategies for implementing the Zero Emissions Campus, addressing the issues of digitalization in architecture and civil engineering and sustainable development.
Students will work in mixed groups supervised by the faculty members of the Eco-Campus Group from SPbPU (Russia), TUB (Germany), CUNY (USA), USP (Brazil), UAM (Mexico) and Tongji University (China).
Ideas on campus design will be developed by the students within the general conception of the SPbPU Federal Technopolis project, which will be realized at SPbPU from 2019-2025. The aim of the student projects is to develop a Master Plan of the Staff and Student Campuses, based on the principles of the Zero Emissions Campus with consideration to the digitalization of the University society.
The students will be tasked with the following:
During the last theme session, each team will give a twenty-minute presentation of the project. The major points of all the student projects will be presented during the final plenary of the Symposium.
In addition to design studio visits to significant architectural and cultural site, visits to exciting locations in Saint Petersburg will be included.
2019 Theme topic
The core topic of the 2019 WC2 Symposium is «Smart Cities and Digital Society». This covers all modern methods, technologies and solutions based on informatization and digitalization of transport system. Participants will share recent advances of each team in this area and visit several industrial sites providing smart transport solutions.
Transport is at the heart of the development of world cities, as the advantages in carrying out economic activities in proximity (often called “economies of agglomeration”) justify the very existence of cities. Transport is the means to achieving this proximity and increasing the extent to which a city’s activities are easily linked to each other, and therefore, in a world of many competing cities, those with more efficient transport systems have an advantage.
However, providing an efficient transport system in a city to enable the smooth mobility of people and goods does not come without a cost. In many cities today the existing transport infrastructure cannot cope with the steadily increasing demand, and the continuous rise of urban population has rendered many transport systems obsolete, which affects not only the economic aspects of city life but also the quality of life of the residents.
World cities today face a number of problems, which result from their objective of providing efficient transport while at the same time ensuring sustainability and a high standard of living. These include congestion, car dependence, pollution, land use, safety, economic prosperity, as well as political issues, and given that these are all naturally interrelated, the isolated treatment of a single problem without consideration to the others gives rise to additional complexity. A holistic approach is, therefore, required for tackling the transport problems and challenges of world cities.
The development of methodologies and tools to address the transport problems of world cities with simultaneous consideration of all the problem areas is the aim of the WC2 Transport club. Subject areas of focus include:
Today digital technologies are closer to business than ever. The term digitalization is becoming an important part of a company’s strategy and creates various challenges in managerial science. For large cities it means infrastructure and ecosystem transformation, creation of new opportunities for entrepreneurs, integration of existing businesses and the evolvement of technologies for life improvement.
For urban universities these trends raise the central question “What role can city-based universities and their business schools play in evolvement of existing and creation of new business models in the context of digitalization?” This raises the following supplementary questions:
I invite all of the Business Theme participants to consider these questions for WC2 St. Petersburg, Russia. We encourage the involvement of graduate students with an interest in this theme. The Business Theme will use the time available outside of the planned plenary sessions to provide workshops for scholarly research outputs. Such outputs can include research articles for submission to journals or case studies to be submitted to case publishers such as:
Prior to arriving in St. Petersburg, student participants will prepare an extended abstract, an example of which is attached, and will work with faculty to collaborate on either the production of a research article pertaining to one of the supplementary questions above or to a case study publication that applies these questions to a particular company or organization within St. Petersburg or from their home location.
What is the purpose of the conceptual article or case study you wish to undertake or if you have an existing work you wish to refine?
What do you see as the practical implications associated with your article or case study?
How do you expect this article or case study will contribute to the existing literature and how original do you think it is?
Theme topic: Digital Education.
That topic allows us considerable breadth while also giving us common points of reference on topics germane to all of the participating campuses. Here are some possible sub-themes:
Digital Education and Digital Culture
Digital Education and Digital Society.
Digital Education and Urban Affairs Development.
Digital Society and Regulatory Structures
There are of course other possibilities and we welcome proposals that explore ideas not listed here. With this note, we seek three kinds of proposals:
To arrange your travel to the Symposium, you may need a formal invitation from the conference host. This is particularly important for those of you who will have to apply for the Russian visa. The main purpose of your visit to Russia will be to attend the scientific conference, and we expect that Common Humanitarian visa type will be required. Please consult with the visa section of the Russian Embassy or Consulate what type of visa is required for you and the persons who will accompany you in this travel. Since the visa application procedure may take considerable time, we strongly encourage you to make every effort to ensure that you have all the necessary documents and start the process as soon as possible.
Depending on your citizenship, different procedures for issuing the invitation (visa support letter) apply as described below.
The above times do not include the time needed for your visa application. Please refer to the official websites of the Russian Embassy or Consulate in the country of your residence to obtain the information needed to prepare and submit your application, to pass the interview (if appropriate), and to get your passport stamped with the visa. Please do not underestimate the actual time needed to complete the procedure.
To obtain the formal invitation, which will be required to apply for Russian visas (visa support letters), you have to provide the following information.
Please include all of the above-listed data in the invitation inquiry form provided on the registration form.
Once again, we encourage you to inquire about the invitation and to start your visa application process as soon as you can. For further details on how to apply for the Russian visa, please refer to the specific requirements, which are applicable to your country of residence, available at the official website of the Russian Embassy or Consulate.
As a Russian largest city in the North-Western region, St. Petersburg is a global center for business, finance, arts and culture and is dedicated to being a model of sustainable development. St. Petersburg is famous for its elegant and beautiful views and is considered to be a cultural capital of Russia.
St.Petersburg is a cultural hub with immense historical significance, St. Petersburg has much to offer, from museums to art exhibitions, from theater productions to concerts and festivals.
Useful links about St. Petersburg:
The Symposium will be held on campus at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU). The campus is located in the north of the city
Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University will do its best to reserve accommodation options for participants near the university campus and in the city. These options cater to a variety of budgets.
For students it is available an option to stay on campus in students’ dormitories (see the list of recommended hotels bellow.
Due to a high-season time at St. Petersburg all accommodation options will be limited and provided on «first come – first get» terms.
For students’ dormitories, please, contact University by the contacts provided bellow. For all other accommodation option, please, visit hotels’ websites for reservation.
36 Toreza prospect
Metro «Ploschad Muzhestva» or Metro «Polyteknicheskaya»
(Distance to SPbPU 1,5 km)
Discount code: WC2-2019
The number of rooms with discount is limited
4 Nepokoryonnyh prospect
Metro «Ploschad Muzhestva»
(Distance to SPbPU 1,3 km)
5-7 Rimskiy-Korsakov prospect
Metro «Sennaya/Sadovaya/ Spasskaya»
(Distance to SPbPU 12,1 km)
SPbPU student’s dormitory
option for students
28 Grazhdanskiy prospect
For enquiries, please, e-mail to: email@example.com
Walking distance, 5-10 minutes
The number of rooms is limited