Seminar room of International Project Lab., Third floor, Engineering Building No.11, Hongo Campus, The University of Tokyo

Special seminar about urban planning in Vietnam at UTokyo

We will conduct a special seminar, in which Dr. Kien TO is invited to make a special lecture about urban planning in Vietnam. This event is held at Hongo Campus, the University of Tokyo from 5:30pm-7:00pm, December 3 (Tuesday). We hope you will join us for the event and engage in this important conversation. The details are shown as follows. Thank you.

1) Time and day: 5:30pm-7:00pm, December 3 (Tuesday), 2019

2) Place: Seminar room of International Project Lab., Third floor, Engineering Building No.11, Hongo Campus, The University of Tokyo (

3) Presetnation

– Title: Urban Planning in Vietnam Then and Now

– Abstract:

As Southeast Asia’s fastest developing country and one of the world’s fastest emerging economies, urbanization in Vietnam has been progressing very rapidly, especially in the two largest cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. This talk provides an overview asa well as insights into urban planning in Vietnam across different historical eras, taking Hanoi – the cradle of Vietnam’s urban development – as the main case. The 100-year-old capital city is also the oldest one in Southeast Asia with many different historical layers reflecting changing eras. The first part of the talk reviews the past “millennium” urban development from the feudal era through the French colony th the socialist central planning system until Doi Moi (economic reform in 1986). The second part focuses on the contemporary urban development in post-Doi Moi era under the so-called “Market-oriented socialist” System. In this period, urban planning and development are controlled by government central planning, yet strongly driven by capitalist forces, with emerging trends, challenges and prospects as reflected in Hanoi asa well as Ho Chi Minh City. Fiercer economic competition, environmental and climate change threats, depleted resources and accumulated problems of three fast-growth decades have compelled the metropolises to innovate, take a more participatory approach, and find new development strategies, catalysts and momentum to sustain their development towards smarter and sustainable growth in the future.

4) Short bio of presenter

Dr. Kien TO is Senior Urban Planner and Project Manager affiliated with Tokyo-based Eight-Japan Engineering Consultants Inc. Besides practicing, he is an independent researcher and educator in Architecture, Urban Design and Planning with a 20-year academic track record and a strong focus on Asia. Educated in Japan, Germany, and Vietnam, Dr. Kien has worked in Japan, Singapore and Vietnam. He has researched and published on various sustainability, urban liveability, hyper-urbanization and historical conservation, and gives lectures and talks internationally. He gains empirical knowledge through extensive field-based research and projects in collaboration with local communities and authorities across Asia. In Singapore, he co-founded Opportunity Lab and Social Urban Research Group based at Singapore University of Technology and Design. He also initiated and co-chaired SUTD Go-Green Committee, and participated in a number of environmental as well as social activities in Singapore. He also served as a Resource Person at the Singapore Institute of Architects Sustainability Committee. Although active abroad, Dr. Kien always keeps a close connection with his home country Vietnam and is an active member of Vietnam Urban Planning and Development Association. He is involved in various professional and academic activities in Vietnam and writes a number of articles published in Vietnamese prominent urbanism and architecture journals as well as popular newspapers.

5) Charge: free

6) Language: English only

7) Participation: Please contact Ms. Tomoko Samukawa ( for joining this seminar, but you can join the seminar even without pre-registration.