04 July 2000 --
Berlin became the meeting place for all concerned with urban matters, as thousands came to attend the meetings on the future of cities. After opening speeches by UN secretary-General Koffi Annan and German Chancellor Schroeder, the meeting heard from mayors from all over the world and listened to the report of the World Commission on the Urban future, of which Ismail Serageldin was a member. The commission brought together luminaries such as Sir Peter Hall, Ambassador Tommy Koh, Ela Bhatt and Lord Richard Rogers. The report of the commission was quite optimistic on the future. Its recommendation focused on mastering technology and basing action on participation and good governance.
Many professional sessions were organized and a declaration was issued affirming the importance of shaping an urban future to meet the needs of the millions of poor urban dwellers and to overcome discrimination, ensure access for all and promote truly sustainable cities in the new urban millennium.