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​Welcome to Beyond 2020

Beyond2020 – World Sustainable Built Environment Conference

​Welcome to Beyond 2020, a digital international conference on sustainable built environment. The aim of the conference is to engage the global community of researchers, companies, organisations and regulators active in the sustainable built enviornment sector, and together create a roadmap towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

BY THE YEAR 2020, it’s estimated that 4.3 billion people will live in cities. This will have a profound effect on urban development, all over the world, and we have the responsibility to address the sustainability-related challenges with a global view and many different, local perspectives. Planning the cities and communities we hope to live in is the core of this exciting journey, towards a vibrant and dynamic future in which the fate of humanity is in the balance.  At BEYOND 2020, we have the ambition of creating the missing link between the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the built environment. We will cross the boundaries of knowledge, share top-level expertise and merge it, to shape the future of the built environment. Together with you.​

The conference offers an extensive program and good opportunities for networking online. Among the speakers are Ms.Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director for UN-Habitat, Marcene Mitchell, Senior Manager of Climate Business and Strategy, IFC/World Bank Group, and from Chalmers Professor Robin Teigland.  

Read all about the conference and how to participate: 


Beyond 2020 is this year's leading global conference in sustainable construction. Here, researchers, from all over the world meet. The conference is aimed at various actors with influence over community building - business, government, urban planners and legislators. Beyond 2020 aims at 11 of the 17 sustainability goals included in the UN's Agenda 2030, with the main focus on the goal Sustainable cities and communities: "to make cities and settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable". 


55 percent of the world's population lives in cities and by 2050 that figure is expected to rise to 68 percent, according to the UN. This makes the sustainability perspective the biggest challenge for everyone who contributes to the development of urban environments. The rapid and large influx into cities places new demands that need to be met in an ecologically, economically and socially sustainable way. The world's society builders have less than 4,000 days to reach the UN's sustainability goals.

Four questions are at the heart of Beyond 2020:

  • How can the construction sector contribute to the development of the sustainable cities and communities of the future?
  • What other sustainability goals should be taken into account in order to achieve the goal of sustainable cities and communities?
  • How does the prioritization of different goals, which are relevant to the built environment, differ in different parts of the world?
  • What challenges do the various actors in community building face and what opportunities are created by implementing the UN's sustainability goals?

Read more:
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The ultimate goal for the conference is a roadmap for the built environment – a "Transformational Plan for the Built Environment" – which should serve as a basis for national, regional and local strategies to achieve the UN's goals for sustainable development. The key is to start from regional strengths and conditions for setting realistic goals and implementation plans in different parts of the world. The roadmap adopted at the conference will include measures whose results will be evaluated and further developed at the forthcoming WSBE 2023, 2026 and 2029.


The conference lasts for three days, and each conference day has a specific main focus:
NOV 2nd: Climate and sustainability
NOV 3rd: Digitization and innovation
NOV 4th: Sustainable Economy, Policy and Finance

Eleven prioritized areas:

  • Climate mitigation and adaptation
  • Urban regeneration, planning and design
  • Social inclusion for livable societies
  • Promoting green and blue structures for sustainable living environments  
  • Design for hope 
  • Health, comfort and well-being for a better life 
  • Energy systems for the future
  • Resilient transport systems and mobility solutions 
  • Circular built environment and urban metabolism 
  • Material innovation 
  • Digitalisation and technology innovation for a sustainable built environment

Panel discussions – Central themes:

  • The role of the municipal administrations in the development towards sustainable communities  
  • The pursuit of a construction sector without carbon dependency  
  • The role of digitalisation  
  • The need for innovation as support in the work towards increased sustainability

Special sessions:

  • The role of architecture for sustainability goals  
  • Circular economy in the built environment - a global perspective  
  • The energy system of the future  
  • What will the public transport of the future look like?  

Scientific contributions:

Researchers from 45 countries on all continents present over 300 scientific articles in short sessions, where a moderator guides the audience. In each session, several new findings are presented within the same main area. The articles have been selected from 1,050 submitted entries by 200 experts around the world.  


A large number of international experts in sustainability and sustainable construction from business, academia and the public sector will be present at the conference.

Keynote speakers

  • Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director and Under-Secretary-General, UN-Habitat    
  • Michael Wong Wailun, Secretary for Development, The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region   
  • Chan Ka-Kui, Chairman of Construction Industry Council, Hong Kong
  • Cheung Hau-Wai, Chairman of Hong Kong Green Building Council, Hong Kong   
  • Kotchakorn Voraakhorn, CEO and Founder of LANDPROCESS | Porous City Network
  • Ada Colau, Mayor of Barcelona    
  • Roland Hunziker, Director, Sustainable Buildings and Cities, at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Geneva
  • Chrisna Du Plessis, Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Architecture, and Chair of the School for the Built Environment, University of Pretoria
  • Volker Buscher, Director | Chief Data Officer at Arup
  • Robin Teigland, Professor at Chalmers University of Technology    
  • Anders Wijkman, Chairman of the Governing Board of Climate-KIC    
  • Björn Johansson, Global Environmental Manager, Bona   
  • Lena Hök, Senior Vice President Sustainability at Skanska AB   
  • Marcene Mitchell, Global Head Strategy and Business Development, IFC Climate Business Department| World Bank Group 
  • Christina Gamboa, CEO at World Green Building Council 
In addition to the keynote speakers, some thirty speakers from different countries and disciplines will take part in panel discussions and special sessions during the conference. Read more:

Moderator: Angela Lamont

Angela Lamont is a journalist and speaker with a background in BBC. Anelga Lamont specialises in presenting science, technology and engineering, and thrives on making potentially complex subjects engaging and enjoyable.


Beyond2020 is arranged by Chalmers University of Technology with support from RISE, Johanneberg Science Park and City of Gothenburg. The conference is part of the World Sustainable Built Environment Conference (WSBE) series. Host cities are appointed by iiSBE, a worldwide non-profit organization whose overall goal is to actively work for initiatives that can contribute to more sustainable cities and communities. This year's conference is the eighth since the start in 2000 and is held every three years. WSBE has previously been held in Maastricht, Oslo, Tokyo, Melbourne, Helsinki, Barcelona and Hong Kong. Originally, the conference was to be held in Gothenburg in June with the presence of 2,000 participants from all over the world, but due to the current global situation with the corona pandemic, it will now take place online instead.


Akademiska hus, Autodesk Construction Cloud, Bona, Construction Industry Council & HKGBC, Hongkong, Saint-Gobain, Skanska, Rockwool


Holger Wallbaum, Professor in Sustainable Building, Chalmers, +46 31 772 19 94,
Karin Weijdegård, COmmunication Officer, Johanneberg Science Park, +46 31 735 25 27 08,

Category Conference
Location: Online
Starts: 02 November, 2020, 08:00
Ends: 04 November, 2020, 20:00

Page manager Published: Fri 09 Oct 2020.