World Parks Week will take place from 29 April - 7 May 2017, showcasing events that celebrate the world's parks.

Please feel free to spread the word, and to use the World Parks Week logos to support your events.

Download the World Parks Week 2017 logos>>

Download World Parks Week sample Tweets>>

We have also produced a linking map to feature World Parks Week events from around the world. Please let us know about the great events you are have planned by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the following details (or a simple link to the event website):

  • Subject line 'World Parks Week event'
  • Event name
  • Event location/address
  • Event date and time
  • Event web or Facebook address (if applicable)
  • An image or event logo

World Parks Week eventsAbout World Parks Week

World Parks Week is an opportunity to celebrate our parks and green spaces.

The week is organised to:

  • Communicate the critical importance of parks in a global context
  • Promote best practice by learning from other parks services
  • Encourage people to enjoy their local park and appreciate the importance of green space

World Urban Parks previously organised a World Parks Day in September.

For information on events from previous World Parks Days, see the articles below:

World Parks Day 2015

World Parks Day 2014





World Urban Parks offers three levels of congress:

  • Annual World Urban Parks Congress in partnership with a national association, major city or organisation (level 3)
  • World Urban Parks Region Congress (usually annual) in partnership with a national/state association, city or organisation (level 2)
  • International Conferences partnered with any relevant organisation (level 1)

The Congresses provide an opportunity for members to become inspired, share knowledge and form and maintain key contacts with people involved in parks, open space, recreation, culture and related disciplines and interests from across the globe as well as see initiatives in the host city. They usually include a World Urban Parks day for board, committee and working party meetings and workshops where members can meet face to face.

World Urban Parks may in addition partner with organisations to bring world status, international speakers and value to other conferences and exhibitions. These may not include broad member attendance.

To assist in congress planning World Urban Parks sought in July 2015 expressions of interest (EOI) to host congresses from 2016 through 2018. The intent is to form a rolling three-year schedule of annual congresses. These are currently under consideration with World Congresses approved by the board and Region Congresses approved by Region Committees. Associations and organisations interested in discussing future opportunities are welcome to contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


 2017 Congresses


The International Greenery, Recreation, Infrastructure and Parks Conference, Singapore 2017

An Institute of Parks and Recreation Singapore and World Urban Parks Asia-Pacific Region Congress, this will be held 6-10 June at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre.

6th June is a seminar/master class and potential WUP Asia Pacific Region meeting, 7 and 8 June is the conference and events days, 9 June is technical tours and the 10th a cycling tour. WUP members interested in presenting should contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

More information is available in this brochure. The program and registration will be made available soon. Special rates will be available at Marina Bay Sands Hotel.


Marina Bay Sands Hotel with roof park

Gardens by the Bay


Sungei Buloh Wetland Park




World Urban Parks Europe Region Congress at Birkenhead Park, in association with Wirral Council, UK 2017


Our 2017 Europe Region Congress will be held at Birkenhead Park in October 2017 in partnership with Wirral Council in the United Kingdom. The call for abstracts has been extended until 17 April, so if you would like to make a presentation, please submit a short abstract (300 words) of your proposal to Mary Worrall This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before this date. Birkenhead Park, designed by Joseph Paxton, is considered the first publicly funded park, and influenced Central Park in New York. Conference themes relate to community and heritage, including presentations and discussion on large urban parks.

Pre-congress tours and workshops are planned to start on 14 October, with the congress officially held from 17-19 October. Post-congress tours will also

Birkenhead Park Opening 1847

 Birkenhead Park Today


Concept for Wirral Waters



2016 Congresses

Second World Urban Parks Congress, Cape Town, South Africa                   

World Urban Parks Congress 2016The second World Urban Parks congress was held at the President Hotel, Cape Town from 26-28 September, in partnership with the Institute of Environment and Recreation Management of South Africa and their annual convention.

Including technical tour presenters, the Congress featured over 70 presenters from around the world (See Program).

The Congress was structured with presentations on 26 and 27 September with a Gala Dinner on the night of 27 September, and technical tours, hosted by the City of Cape Town on 28 September. The dinner featured the presentation of the second World Urban Parks Distinguished Individual Award to Neil McCarthy and the presentation of the first Certified Parks Professional (CPP) certificate to an African candidate, Emmanuel Maphorogo. 

Six conference presenters flew on to Johannesburg on 29 September to deliver their presentations again at an International Colloquium at the University of South Africa for professionals unable to travel to the Congress, with a further 85 delegates in attendance.

The full PowerPoint presentations are available here as PDFs, with World Urban Parks member presentations outlined briefly in the conference report below:

Read the Congress Report>>


Judy Ling-Wong presenting on urban national parks
Judy Ling-Wong presenting on urban national parks
Natalia Fishman presenting onthe parks of Tatarstan
Natalia Fishman presenting on the parks of Tatarstan
Emmanuel Maphorogo awarded first certified Parks Professional award to an African candidate
Emmanuel Maphorogo awarded first certified Parks Professional award to an African candidate


World Urban Parks Europe Region and Hortis Congress, Albi, France

The 1st World Urban Parks Europe Region Congress was held in partnership with Hortis, the French association for urban parks management, and their annual congress from 5-7 October. The venue was the Grand Theatre in the UNESCO World Heritage listed city of Albi, France.


Titled Green Heritage and Green Infrastructure: Evolution or Revolution in Society the congress featured 46 speakers and workshop presenters (17 international) plus Hortis region presenters and technical tour leaders for a dozen local destinations.  Overall the congress attracted an enthusiastic 374 registrants - for the congress, a large trade show and accompanying person tours. The conference was structured with a WUP half day on the 4th with about 30 members presenting on key issues in their countries and holding a Large Urban Parks Committee meeting, and the main congress from the 5th to 7th with morning presentations alternating with workshops or technical tours in the afternoon. Nine Hortis members received the World Parks Academy and Hortis partnered Certified Parks Professional - France certificates at the Gala Dinner on the 6th. International WUP members numbered 35 plus 7 accompanying persons.


Read the Congress Report>>

View the bilingual French-English conference program here.


 Presentation on Hortis and French key issues by Elisabeth Fournier, Hortis Secretary General, at the WUP Workshop

 Opening Address by Jean-Pierre Gueneau, President of Hortis, with WUP Chair Dr Anna Steidle waiting to respond; Grand Theatre, Albi

 Congress participants at the Garden of Martels in Giroussens

Past Congresses

The first World Urban Parks Congress was held in association with the 9th Iberoamerican Congress of Parks and Public Gardens and Ponte de Lima Municipality, Ponte de Lima, Portugal, 26-30 May 2015

The congress attracted 200 participants of which 45 were speakers and over 50 World Urban Parks members. Activity included a pre-congress member day on the 25th, Pre-congress tour on the 26th, Congress from 27th – 29th, and Post-congress tour 30th May. To view the full program and papers go to the World Urban Parks Congress 2015 website.

The languages were English, Portuguese and Spanish with all sessions translated. Congress tours included the International Garden Festival, an annual event with 100,000 visitors annually, as well as touring Portugal's only national park.

See here for:

The Congress Report

The pre-congress World Urban Parks Day report

The Congress Program

The World Urban Parks Media Release

Pictures: Top Left, ExpoLima venue; middle, presentation hall; right, pre-congress workshop at the Palacete Villa Morais.

Bottom Left Associations meeting in the dining marquee; middle Peneda Geres National Park; Right Traditional dancing

Congresses by antecedent organisation Ifpra were held every three years with regional congresses in intervening years. 

The last Regional Congress was the Ifpra Asia-Pacific Congress held in Penang, Malaysia, 23-27 June 2014.


The 2013 World Congress was held in October at Lake Louise in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada in association with the thriving Alberta Recreation and Park Association.  As a joint conference Ifpra members provided 25 percent of presentations, adding a distinctly international flavour.



For the 2013 World Congress Report, by Gilbert Briscoe, click here . For the 2013 pre-Congress Tour Report, by Cliff Lacey and Barry Manchak, click here.

Papers presented at the 2013 World Congress can be downloaded from the Leisure Information Network here.


Reports from the 2010 World Congress held in Hong Kong, including proceedings and photos, are available here.


Other Conferences 

World Urban Parks may be involved to varying levels with other Conferences.



The last two conferences with Ifpra participation were:


IUCN World Parks Congress, Sydney 12-19 November 2014

Ifpra contributed to Stream 3 Healthy Parks Healthy People, Session 8 Great Parks and Green Spaces: Creating Healthy and Liveable Cities with a presentation by CEO Digby Whyte on World Urban Parks the proposed new-model world urban parks organisation.

Nordic Parks Congress, Malmö Sweden 20-22 August 2014

The four-yearly Nordic Parks Conference (conducted in English) included presentations from head gardeners from Gothenburg, Sweden and Chicago, USA, the former Commissioner of Parks, Sport and Recreation for Bogota, Columbia and Ifpra’s James McCulloch from the UK as well as local study tours.   In conjunction Ifpra hosted a pre-conference program comprising a full day bus tour of Copenhagen on 18 August and on 19 August a day with the Yardstick Scandinavian User Group Meeting, Ifpra Academy Workshop,  and Ifpra Europe, World Commissioners and World Executive meetings. Ifpra coordination was by Dr Christy Boylan, Ifpra Europe Secretary, with the conference program by Sten Goranssen, Chairman of the Swedish Association of Park Administrators.

Papers from the Nordic Parks Congress can be downloaded from the Movium website here