The international conferences of aim to present and disseminate research results related to the Sustainable Development of Cities and Regions at a global level.
The main subject is the presentation of relevant research in the light of Sustainable Development. Sustainable Development is proposed because it has been globally set as the ultimate goal of the global community. Since the Stockholm International Conference (1972) it has been continuously expanded and redefined. So, while in the past when we said “sustainability” we were referring purely to the environment, gradually the international and European Community also understood the important involvement of the economy, society and finally culture. All this was “ratified” by the International Conference of Rio (1992) and specifically in the landmark text of Local Agenda 21. Subsequently, in the year 2015, with the decision of the United Nations Special Session on Environment and Development, the 17 Global Goals were set of Sustainable Development and each country separately formulated its policies and actions with the aim of achieving these goals.
Today the global community has matured and realized that only with the cooperation of all factors related to the environment, the economy, society and culture can we lead to urban, local and regional development, which will respect people and their quality of life.
At the same time, however, in every modern society, regional development is also implemented and carried out through Strategic Development Programs. In modern societies, there is no longer any “randomness” in actions and policies, but goals are set and results are sought that aim at sustainable urban, local and regional development. A development that, according to the Brundtland Report (1983), will not exhaust resources (natural, economic, social, cultural), but will manage them in such a way as to allow them to survive for future generations.
The results of development would not be positive if the various factors acted autonomously, without taking into account the others. Economic, social, spatial, cultural and other factors are not formed independently, but complement each other and interact with each other, shaping the final result. Good cooperation and communication also lead to the correct prioritization of needs, so that the appropriate actions are implemented, in the appropriate area and at the appropriate time.
Taking into account the above, the International Conferences of are organized and structured on the four main pillars of Sustainable Development, which in fact are also main pillars of Urban and Regional Development. That is, the environment, the economy, society and culture. Each of these pillars includes its subcategories, which are detailed through the thematic sections related to the 17 Global Goals of Sustainable Development. Of course, the boundaries of these cognitive objects are not always clear. For example, an environmental action very often has social, economic and cultural ramifications and impacts. Therefore, all these are taken into account in the final configuration of the conference programs.