poster of lady looking out at the sea. She is standing sideways and leaning on a bridge or fence

About this event

Circular development is a regenerative approach to the way in which we design, plan and manage urban ecosystems. It has the potential to help city-regions mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and adapt for climate change. It will ecologically regenerate urban systems; turn cities into producers as well as consumers of resources; and enable them to adapt more easily to the tumultuous changes in the landscape. However, it does incur a whole range of challenges to implementation. Perhaps the greatest of these is the low value the economic system attributes to circular activities, which are needed to address climate change.

Join us in person at Grantham Institute Board room, or watch the online screening at Silwood PArk’s F&H rooms, or online for an intriguing discussion with Prof Jo. There will be time for questions after her presentation and a networking session will follow.

About our speaker

Jo Williams is a senior lecturer in Sustainable Urbanism at the Bartlett School of Planning. She co-developed the innovative MSC Sustainable Urbanism and was the director of the programme from 2010 – 2012. She is currently Director of the International Circular Cities Hub which she founded in collaboration with the Ellen Macarthur Foundation. She works closely with industry (e.g. ARUPs, Zed Architects, Happolds, WSP, CBRE, WS Atkins), government (municipalities, regional and national governments in Europe and Asia), interest groups (e.g. Asia- Pacific Zero Carbon Hub), International bodies (European Environment Agency and United Nations). She has acted as an advisor to a number of regional, national and international bodies including: the United Nations task force on the Marrakech process, the European Environment Agency; the World Congress on Smart Cities, the UK Peak Oil committee, the Horizon Scanning team and UK Department of Business, Innovation and Enterprise; and the GLA London Renewables. She is on the steering panel for several large research projects and conferences focussed on low carbon and smart urbanism. She reviews papers for several journals (including Energy Policy, Journal Cleaner production, Environment and Planning B) that are important in the field of sustainable urbanism and energy policy. She has published widely in peer-reviewed journals and written “Zero Carbon Homes – A Road Map” a book published by EarthScan-Routledge

Poster image attribution: ‘Life – Dublin, Ireland – Color street photography‘, by Guiseppe Milo, CC2.0

Joining the event

This will be a hybrid event, with the opportunity for Imperial staff and students to attend at one of two campus locations (South Kensington and Silwood Park).

In Person

• South Kensington Campus – The Grantham Institute Boardroom, followed by a networking reception.

• Silwood Park Campus – Fisher and Haldane. There will be a live stream of the event here followed by a networking reception.


Guests can join the seminar remotely on zoom. Details to be sent to those who register.

The Changing Planet seminar series is run by students and staff on the Science and Solutions for a Changing Planet (SSCP) Doctoral Training Program. It offers the chance to hear the latest in understanding, adapting to and mitigating environmental problems, complementing the diversity of environmental research at Imperial College London and beyond. Please be aware that our seminars are recorded. If you do not wish to appear on the recording please alert a member of staff. For any further enquiries regarding the Changing Planet seminar series, please contact us at .

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