Last year alone, I had the opportunity to work in 42 different cities, in five continents. Through all of my keynotes, workshops, and meetings I included World Urban Parks (WUP) information. An almost unanimous response was their interest in networking, learning from international park practices, on both what to do as well as to avoid.


This past month I have seen how WUP is providing this possibility and continues to search for ways to do it even better.


International congresses provide countless opportunities to share and to learn from others, in the programmed sessions as well as informally, in coffee breaks or walks. In October we are having our World Event in conjunction with Parks and Leisure Australia’s great International Congress in amazing Melbourne. Registration is open, and it’d be great to have as many WUP members attending as possible. In addition to the world event, the regional events also play a very important role. A few weeks ago, we were part of the Congreso Internacional de Parques in Mérida, México. Felicitaciones Asociacion Nacional de Parques de México, ANPA. This was the first Congress held by ANPA, and there were over 1700 participants from 22 countries in attendance. There was great representation of WUP members, both through delivering keynotes and specialized sessions. We also had a special session for current members and people interested in becoming members, where we had a lively conversation on what we are doing, and what they want us to do in the future.


The Annual General Meeting (AGM) for World Urban Parks will be held electronically from 24th August to 31st August. The AGM will be held via electronic survey so that all members will have six days to participate at their convenience. 
A link to go online and fill out the AGM survey will be provided as well as when nominations will open. Please find the nomination form here.

The AGM will provide an opportunity for members to see and comment on:

  • the directors’ annual report for the 2017/18 year
  • the audited financial reports for the 2017/18 year
  • the statements of service performance for the 2017/18 year

View World Urban Parks 2017 Achievements>>

World Urban Parks is pleased to seek Expressions of Interests (EOI) to host any of its World or Regional Congresses over the next three years (and beyond)! Preference will be given to partnering with World Urban Parks member associations, cities, and organisations.

Expressions of Interest Open to Host World Urban Parks Annual World Congresses and Annual Regional Congresses for 2019, 2020 & 2021. Download the application!

Submit to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by close of business 31st July 2018

Thank you for your continued membership to World Urban Parks (WUP). As an organisation we strive to share knowledge and provide a collective voice for all people and organisations engaged in green cities, open space, recreation, health and related activity. Together we want to build healthy, liveable and sustainable communities.

In an effort to serve you better, WUP asks for your participation in our membership survey. The survey should take about five minutes to complete. Please take this opportunity to contribute your valuable feedback regarding your membership experience with us. One of our key goals is to continually increase our membership excellence.  We appreciate you as a member and strive to meet your expectations. 

Complete the Membership Survey here>>

The World Parks Academy is looking for speakers to deliver engaging presentations on important topics in the parks and recreation industry.

Short webinars provide an excellent opportunity to connect with international professionals and advance education in parks and recreation worldwide.
WPA Certified Members - webinars are a great way to earn continuing professional development hours! A total of 30 hours is required in order to maintain certification. 
If you would like to lead a webinar presentation in 2018, please contact World Urban Parks Secretariat Coordinator at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click here to view recorded WPA webinars and earn credit toward your continuing professional development. For more information on how to register contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

World Urban Parks has had the privilege to work with and benefit from Hortis as a organization member. Hortis has been a french association since 1938 for "the managers of natural spaces in the city." Its role is,

  • to exchange and to share
  • to preserve and to develop
  • to represent and to defend 

The association represents 548 members in 400 territorial authorities, which is comprised of 278 engineers, 171 technicians, and foremen. Hortis provides its expertise for research and for the government for establishing the national strategic directions in environment and landscape, and with all the professional partners.

World Urban Parks has benefited greatly through Hortis and its staff, such as Elisabeth Fournier who is Chair of the World Urban Parks Alliances Portfolio. She continues to develop partnerships to build World Urban Parks mission and vision across the world. 

To find out more about Hortis you can subscribe to read their quarterly magazine  here or visit their website. 


It is an understatement to say that it is an exciting time to be working on urban parks at a global scale. We have done a lot, but much more remains to be done. The world urban population will double from 3.5 billion to over 7.0 billion in the next 40 years. This represents a magnificent opportunity as well as enormous responsibility to support the development of parks and open spaces as critical elements in creating vibrant cities and healthy communities where all citizens will live happier.

So being involved and Making a Difference has been a theme for World Urban Parks in 2018. 

World Urban Parks, is where World Parks Leaders Grow Here – World Urban Parks provides the numerous opportunities for all of us to lead.

It is with great pleasure that I announce the:

  • International Large Urban Parks Award
  • Parks Week 2018
  • Distinguished Individual Award

Further details regarding these are in this Newsletter.

Also, World Urban Parks is proud to be a partner of the upcoming first International Congress of Urban Parks in Mexico (25-27 April, 2018) and is very appreciative of the leadership provided by the National Association of Parks & Recreation Mexico.  I look forward to seeing you there.

Make a difference, amplify your voice, multiply your action and join World Urban Parks.


National Association of Parks and Recreation - Mexico

In less than 3 weeks the National Association of Parks and Recreation is hosting the 1st international congress of urban parks. It is not too late to register! 

The National Association of Parks and Recreation, Mexico is a new organization and is focused on developing five actions in Mexico, 

1) Design and Planning
2) Economy and Used of Public Space
3) Health and Environment
4) Public Service and Citizen Participation 
5) The City

These action items as well as many more will be the focal point of the 1st international congress of urban parks. This congress now has over 1000 attendees from all over the world, including World Urban Parks Members. Keynote presentation by the Chair of World Urban Parks Gil Penalosa and World Urban Parks Chair of the Emerging Cities Region Jorge Perez Jaramillo. 

You can join the National Association of Parks and Recreation at their 1st international congress later this month.

IERM Convention 2018 - Call for Abstracts

Public Spaces and Places - Future Value, Trends & Global Views 17 - 19 September 2018  

Our institute will be hosting its annual Convention from Monday 17 September to Wednesday, 19 September 2018 in Durban.

We invite all parties who may be interested in presenting papers or case studies at the convention to send a summary of no more than 200 words to the IERM Secretariat by Thursday, 31 May 2018.


  • Parks and Green Spaces

  • Urban Greening and Urban Forestry

  • Cemeteries and Crematoria

  • Urban Ecotourism

  • Sport and Recreation

  • Landscaping and Urban Horticulture

  • Biodiversity and Urban Nature Conservation

  • Community benefits through tourism

  • Asset Management and Maintenance

  • Education, Training and Development

Proposals should be submitted online to the IERM Secretariat by using the below mentioned link by no later than Thursday, 31 May 2018.



Recommended Articles

This months recommended articles discuss such topics associated with park management and funding of parks and green spaces. Enjoy reading!

Knowsley agrees plan to protect financial future of parks

Knowsley Council has formally accepted the recommendations of an independent review into the future management and funding of its parks and green spaces.

Continue reading here>>

Urban greenness and mortality in Canada’s largest cities: a national cohort study

Findings from published studies suggest that exposure to and interactions with green spaces are associated with improved psychological wellbeing and have cognitive, physiological, and social benefits, but few studies have examined their potential effect on the risk of mortality. We therefore undertook a national study in Canada to examine associations between urban greenness and cause-specific mortality.

Crouse, Dan L., et al. "Urban greenness and mortality in Canada's largest cities: a national cohort study." The Lancet Planetary Health 1.7 (2017): e289-e297.

Continue Reading here>>

As Cape Town’s Day Zero looms, where the city has been stricken by a three-year drought and water restrictions are severe, to the possible closure of the UK’s widely successful Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) a hugely successful Parks for People programme that invested millions of people’s lottery money into improving parks and local facilities, are stark reminders of the challenges we all face in a changing world.

This year’s World Urban Park Congress (2018 International Parks & Leisure Congress) “Future of Spaces & Places in Cities” sets a platform for world leaders come together to discuss these challenges and set the Agenda on “Future Parks & Cities”.  Parks & Leisure Australia (our Congress partner & host) and World Urban Parks are pleased to announce that apart from the normal early bird registration discount for our members, there will be a significant further discount if you register 5 delegates, you will receive the 6th registration free.  A significant benefit to our World Urban Parks Members.

Further details of the Congress and registration will be available from the 16th March.

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is the leading nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of public parks, recreation and conservation. Our work draws national focus to the far-reaching impact of successes generated by park and recreation agencies at the local level. Leveraging their role in conservation, health and wellness, and social equity to improve their communities, NRPA’s members of park and recreation professionals and advocates are 60,000 strong and represent public spaces in urban communities, rural settings and everything in between.

NRPA brings strength to our message by partnering with like-minded organizations, including those in the federal government, nonprofits and commercial enterprises. Funded through dues, grants, registrations and charitable contributions, NRPA produces research, education and policy initiatives for our members that ultimately enrich the communities they serve.  

World Urban Park members may be interested in the following NRPA Initiatives and Resources:  

Nature provides the ultimate foundation of life and health. Our parks, protected areas and green spaces are vital for accessing the health benefits of nature. Discover the IUCN WCPA Health and Well-being Specialist Group e-flyer which gives a concise overview of the context and goals of the Specialist Group, who they are, and what they are trying to do.

Read more here>>

World Urban Parks is looking for volunteers to serve in the role of Executive Officers in a number of Committees. This is an exceptional opportunity to make a difference in the world as well as developing your networks and experiences. This unique opportunity will allow you to be mentored by international park leaders, able to share new ideas and concepts, and participate in World Urban Parks Congresses (free registrations!). The executive officer will also be given full membership for the duration of their tenure.

This role is to provide secretariat and organisational support to the Portfolio, its Working Parties, and its Network. Ideal candidates will have relevant experience in urban parks, greenspaces, recreation, environmental and cultural management or local governments and urban affairs and/or experience of working in a local or state government environment (two years minimum).

To see how you could contribute to World Urban Parks as a committee Executive Officer please visit our international job board.

Malahide Castle & Gardens has won the Best Heritage Project at the prestigious  2018 All Ireland Community and Council Awards at a ceremony in Croke Park Stadium on Saturday evening.  The award comes in recognition of the major repair and conservation work that took place at the Castle and Gardens. This is the 12th year of The Awards, presented by IPB Insurance and LAMA, which, highlight and recognise projects that are the joint effort of councils and community groups.


The Castle and Courtyard has recently undergone major repair and conservation work and the visitor experience and facilities were greatly enhanced in keeping with the demesne’s heritage importance.  The Courtyard buildings include a visitor centre, shopping and a cafe that leads out to the Walled Botanical Gardens and pathway to the Castle. The Talbot Botanic Gardens is a centre of horticultural excellence and is one of the top three Botanic Gardens in the country.



Public parks are a crucial part of the social fabric of the United Kingdom, much loved and used by an estimated 2.6 billion visitors each year but they are threatened by severe cuts as local authorities seek to balance their books. To make this worse, the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) are currently proposing to abandon their hugely successful Parks for People programme that funds improvements to historically important public parks.

The UK’s Heritage Lottery Fund are currently consulting on this issue, the Parks Alliance are working to convince them to rethink and keep this precious funding so that historic UK parks can be protected and continue to be enjoyed by everyone. You can show your support by signing the Parks Alliance’s petition at: