The DiverCITY4 hybrid conference organized on September 22, 2020, at the Wrocław Congress Center is another example of the fact that events can be safely organized in Wrocław. Participants could choose the form of participation in the conference: on-site in Wrocław or online via an internet connection.
The conference was opened by the Deputy Mayor of Wrocław, Jakub Mazur, and the Vice-Rector for Cooperation of the Wrocław University of Science and Technology, prof. dr hab. Eng. Dariusz Łydżba. Thanks to the hybrid formula of the event, the opening speakers also included Ms. Małgorzata Jarosińska-Jedynak, Minister of Funds and Regional Policy and President of the Icelandic Association of Local Authorities – Aldis Hafsteinsdóttir. The welcome message was also recorded by Elita Cakule from the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities.
During the keynote speech of prof. Izabela Mironowicz raised important housing issues from the perspective of contemporary urban development.
The DiverCITY4 conference was a summary and presentation of the effects of the work of four groups of experts related to urban issues in the following areas: housing, accessibility, environment, and senior policy. The workshops were attended by experts from Poland, Norway, and Iceland, and the developed solutions based on experience and good practices.
As part of the research component of the initiative, representatives of Wrocław University of Science and Technology discussed the results of research, conclusions, and recommendations in the field of heating tenement houses, which can also be implemented by small towns and villages.
The hybrid formula of DiverCITY4 allowed increasing the number of people who could participate in the conference. It also allowed for remotely connecting with experts who could not appear in Wrocław and were involved in the preparation of conclusions and recommendations from the Expert Workshop series. Among them were representatives of the donor countries – Iceland and Norway.
The stationary part of the conference, taking place in the Wrocław Congress Center, was carried out with all precautions and in accordance with the recommendations of the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate (GIS). People entering the premises had the temperature measured and signed health declarations. The necessary personal protective equipment was provided, i.e. masks, disinfectants, disposable gloves, medical protection. The participants also received stickers to mark the chairs together with the ID- which allowed to increase sanitary safety.
Online participation is available for all those interested in the subject of urban policy who could not come to Wrocław in person. The real-time transmission took place via a dedicated platform, integrated with the registration system. Online participants had the opportunity to ask questions by the chat, choose the language of the broadcast, and the subject in the case of parallel sessions. Moreover, during the lunch break, an accompanying event was held in the form of a virtual walk around the Centennial Hall.
The “DiverCITY 4 – Polish-Norwegian cooperation in the field of creating modern development solutions in cities” benefits from a € 300 000 grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants. The Initiative aims to identify the most effective solutions and create a cooperation network as well as exchange experiences between Polish self-governments and the Donor States, with particular emphasis on the subject of social participation in urban renewal and improvement of the urban environment.