Home / Media Releases / Stars of urban development to tackle poverty housing at regional Hong Kong forum


Manila, 30 July 2015 – A distinguished who’s who from the fields of urban development and housing will gather from around the globe to meet in Hong Kong from 1 to 4 September 2015. There they will speak to delegates, activists and policy makers, aiming to tackle the issue of poverty housing in the region at the 5th Asia-Pacific Housing Forum.

Prestigious names that will be speaking at the event this year include:

Ted Tozer – President of Ginnie Mae (GNMA), the US Government National Mortgage Association

Daniel Lam – Managing Director, Hong Kong Urban Renewal Authority

Mark Devadason – Head of Sustainability, Standard Chartered

Juan Du – Associate Dean (International and Mainland China Affairs), Faculty of Architecture, University of Hong Kong

Jonathan Woetzel – Director, McKinsey Global Institute

Renee Glover – former CEO, Atlanta Housing Authority; Chair, Habitat for Humanity International Board of Directors

“This is a rare gathering of wisdom and experience from across the world. This forum will be a fantastic opportunity for policy makers and activists that are searching for solutions to end poverty housing in their home countries,” said Rick Hathaway, Asia-Pacific vice president, Habitat for Humanity.

The Asia-Pacific Housing Forum is the region’s leading event for advocating for affordable housing solutions and decent shelter for low-income families. The event takes place every two years, gathering together major actors engaged in developing and delivering sustainable solutions for poverty housing issues.

In 2015 the event is expanding to take place simultaneously in four locations in the Asia-Pacific region. The forum is launching satellite events to be held in two large urban centers – Delhi, India; and Manila, in the Philippines, alongside the main event in Hong Kong.

Under the theme ‘Building Impact’, the forum expects to engage over 2,000 leaders and experts in the field of affordable housing, ranging from policy-makers, entrepreneurs, private sector businesses, academics and civil society players.

“The three events will lift the forum to a whole new level by uniting a record number of participants to discuss local and regional poverty housing topics. The Housing Forum aims to highlight innovative solutions, drive systemic policy change and market shifts, and strengthen partnerships – in order to offer affordable housing solutions at scale for low-income populations, and in a way that makes business and economic sense,” continued Hathaway.

“The Asia-Pacific Housing Forum is timely, coming ahead of the Asia-Pacific Urban Forum, and Habitat III. Taking place in Ecuador next year, Habitat III is the bi-decennial United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development. Habitat for Humanity has been elected to represent civil society in events leading up to and at Habitat III, and will use the Asia-Pacific Housing Forum as a way of gathering input from the region,” said Hathaway.

For a list of speakers, further information and registration details for the Asia-Pacific Housing Forum: aphousingforum.org.

Another highlight of the Housing Forum is the Wharton-Habitat for Humanity housing finance course, a special collaboration between Habitat for Humanity and the prestigious Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The course to be conducted in Hong Kong on 1-2 September focuses on various aspects of housing finance for low-income families in the Asia-Pacific region – regulation, financing and delivering mortgage finance; non-mortgage housing finance models and pricing models.

The main event in Hong Kong will feature four different tracks: Building leadership – profiling organizations and individuals at the forefront of the fight against substandard housing; Impacting communities – examining the key elements of sustainable housing solutions; Building markets – exploring markets that low-income families use to meet their shelter needs, and Impacting society – bringing advocates and volunteers together to present insights on changing housing policy and sharing ideas to raise awareness of housing as a way out of poverty.



Notes to Editors

For media inquiries, please contact Heron Holloway, +63 927 129 6742, hholloway@habitat.org. For information on the events and sponsorship opportunities, please contact +852 2520 4023, info@aphousingforum.org.

About Asia-Pacific Housing Forum 5

The Asia-Pacific Housing Forum is a biennial conference organized by Habitat for Humanity. In 2015, the Housing Forum’s fifth iteration, the main event will be held from 1-4 September in Hong Kong. It will bring together all actors engaged in seeking solutions to low-income housing issues that make business and economic sense. Three satellite events, taking place in India and the Philippines, will meet at similar times. All events will be coordinated through the Housing Forum theme of ‘Building Impact’. aphousingforum.org

 About Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity International’s vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Anchored by the conviction that safe and affordable housing provides a path out of poverty, since 1976 Habitat has helped more than 5 million people through home construction, rehabilitation and repairs and by increasing access to improved shelter through products and services. Habitat also advocates to improve access to decent and affordable shelter and offers a variety of housing support services that enable families with limited means to make needed improvements on their homes as their time and resources allow. As a nonprofit Christian housing organization, Habitat works in more than 70 countries and welcomes people of all races, religions and nationalities to partner in its mission. Habitat has supported an estimated 2 million individuals in the Asia-Pacific region, where it has been active since 1983. To get more information, to donate or to volunteer, please visit habitat.org/asiapacific or follow us at facebook.com/habitat.

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