“CityLab: Urban Solutions to Global Challenges” Gathers City Leaders and Global Mayors in Downtown Los Angeles September 29 & 30


Washington, D.C. and New York, N.Y. (September 3, 2014)—Later this month, the Aspen Institute, The Atlantic, and Bloomberg Philanthropies will bring global mayors and urban visionaries together in Los Angeles for the second annual “CityLab: Urban Solutions to Global Challenges.” The multi-day summit—taking place September 29-30 at the J.W. Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE—will engage these leaders in conversations about the bold, scalable ideas and solutions that are transforming metro centers around the world into more livable and sustainable cities.

As part of the summit, CityLab will also present “CityLab: Making L.A.,” a ticketed event featuring those defining L.A.’s culture and industry, the evening of Monday, September 29 at The Theatre at Ace Hotel.

CityLab’s more than 400 attendees will bring together the people who are creating the cities of the future—mayors from around the world, practitioners, planners, architects, artists, economists, urban scholars, and other civic leaders—to discuss emerging trends and share best practices for common challenges. Plenary discussions will explore public sector innovation, the sharing economy, transportation and mobility, immigration, economic development, and urban resilience. Working lab sessions will tackle disaster preparedness, citizen engagement, aging and demographics, public safety, and more. With Los Angeles as its campus, CityLab attendees will visit and learn from the revitalized Los Angeles River and Port of Los Angeles, and the planned communities at Playa Vista.

The event is being hosted and will include remarks by Michael R. Bloomberg, philanthropist and former Mayor of New York City; Atlantic Media Chairman and Owner David Bradley; and Walter Isaacson, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute, who is also moderating interviews. It will feature leading editorial voices from The Atlantic and CityLab.com, including James Bennet, co-president and editor in chief of The Atlantic; Sommer Mathis, editor of CityLab.com; Ron Brownstein, Atlantic Media’s editorial director; Atlantic national correspondent James Fallows; Richard Florida, urban studies expert and Atlantic senior editor; and Jeffrey Goldberg, Atlantic national correspondent.

CityLab speakers and attendees include Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti; Airbnb Founder and CEO Brian Chesky on the new dynamics of the sharing economy; Lyft CEO John Zimmer and Janette Sadik-Khan, former New York City transportation commissioner and principal at Bloomberg Associates, on the future of urban mobility; Gabriella Gomez-Mont, director of the City Laboratory of Mexico, on fostering healthy, active cities; Blue Hill Chef Dan Barber on sustainable food systems; Tumml CEO Clara Brenner on the role of big data in civic innovation; Department of Housing and Urban Development Senior Advisor Henk Ovink on urban resilience; and Johns Hopkins University President Ron Daniels and Amanda Burden, former New York City chief city planner and principal at Bloomberg Associates, on neighborhood revitalization. A full agenda and list of speakers will be released to media the week of September 15.

The Monday evening public event, “CityLab: Making L.A.,” will bring together fashion, cuisine, and design at The Theatre at Ace Hotel. The event will feature conversations with Mayor Garcetti; famed chef and entrepreneur Roy Choi; Caruso Affiliated Founder and CEO Rick Caruso and Los Angeles County Museum of Art Executive Director Michael Govan on the transformative power of place-making and design; and Paige Adams-Geller, founder and CEO of Paige Denim, and Meg Gill, Golden Road Brewery Founder, on what it takes to build a brand in L.A. Tickets are on sale now; the local event partner is Los Angeles Magazine.

Media who are interested in attending the CityLab summit or “CityLab: Making L.A.” may contact the press leads below.

The inaugural CityLab, held last year in New York City, was named Best Conference of 2013 at the FAME Awards from min and Folio. The summit is an expansion of The Atlantic’s longstanding partnership with the Aspen Institute devoted to the exchange of ideas of consequence, which established the Aspen Ideas Festival in 2005, the Washington Ideas Forum in 2009, and New York Ideas in 2012.

The presenting level underwriters for CityLab are General Motors, Hitachi, HP, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. McKinsey & Company is a knowledge underwriter. CH2M HILL is a supporting level underwriter. The J. Paul Getty Trust, Palantir, and UCLA are contributing level underwriters.