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Thank you to everyone who made the Edmonton Chinatown Conference 2016: The Future of Chinatowns a success!

The graphic recording below was created by Aaron Lao, Monique Yu and Daniel Hackborn, and illustrates what they heard during the action-planning discussions that concluded the conference on June 12, 2016.














For a little taste of the conversations shared throughout the conference, please enjoy this special podcast,

"The Talking Teacup", created by Chris Chang-Yen Phillips, Edmonton's Historian Laureate!








Click on the links below to listen to the recorded sessions.

Thanks to Ashton Wong for setting up the livestreaming and recording,

allowing participants as far away as Berlin to participate!


View Conference Schedule


June 11, 2016


Welcome / Opening Ceremony


Plenary Panel: Snapshots of North American Chinatowns


Transforming Chinatowns: Social, Economic & Cultural Trends


Transforming Chinatowns: Development Strategy & Planning


Tools for the Future: Community, Economic & Education Development: Opportunities and Inspirations


Tools for the Future: Activating Chinatowns through arts and culture – how cultural spaces can attract and engage new and diverse audiences to Chinatown


Chinatowns of the Future: Tools and Technologies for Storytelling


Building Relationships: Working with Our Neighbours


Building Relationships: Inclusive Multicultural Design


Building Relationships: Government, Civic Engagement, Community Leadership (Governance & Participation)


June 12, 2016


Sharing of Action Plans: Making it Happen, Closing

Welcome Message


The Edmonton Chinatown Conference 2016 will be held on June 11-12 at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.  The conference is organized by the Chinese Benevolent Association in partnership with the Edmonton Chinese Community Organizations and the Faculty of Education, University of Alberta. We invite you to join us at the event in Edmonton and would like to emphasize that presentations from different parts of Canada and the world are welcomed. For registration information and presentation instructions, please visit the page.


Conference Description


This Conference on Chinatown past, present and future aims to bring together academics, researchers, students, youth, community stakeholders, businesses, planners, consultants and policy makers to interact and discuss about all aspects of Chinatowns in Canada, United States and other parts of the world. It is a platform for participants to share and learn from each other the most recent trends, concerns, challenges encountered and the solutions adopted or being planned in and for Chinatown.  Participants have plenty of opportunities to exchange economic, societal and cultural choices that influence Chinatown development in the long term. 


Building on the success of the first ever Chinatown conference in Edmonton in 2013, with the theme Chinatown Unveiled, which examined Edmonton’s Chinatown from the past to the future, the second conference will primarily focus on the futures of Chinatowns, not only in Edmonton but in other cities that have a Chinatown. Over the years Chinatowns have been affected (positively or negatively or both) by city planning needs and priorities as well as social, economic and political changes.  Chinatowns are often than not located in old downtown centres or inner city neighbourhoods where revitalization or gentrification efforts have been created to encourage people and businesses to return to or remain in these cores.  Nevertheless while some Chinatowns are thriving others are experiencing displacement, relocation or disappearance.  Each still has its own challenges, and the important question to mull over is: Will there be any Chinatowns left in the future?  The moment has come for a shared vision from all stakeholders to proactively explore sustainable futures for Chinatowns.   


The first day of the conference will be plenary and concurrent sessions while the second day will be facilitated group workshops to come up with recommendations and actions that participants can adapt to promote, enhance and sustain their Chinatown. Throughout the conference are spaces for youth to learn and share perspectives with each other.  Besides perspectives from researchers, community advocates, planners and youth, we will explore how to use technology to remain connected with each other for the purpose of sharing or collaborating in developing tools and resources beneficial for the preservation of Chinatowns. 



Conference Themes and Topics


The Current State of Chinatowns: Social, Economic, Cultural Trends

Economic and Tourism Attributes and Contributions of Chinatowns

Arts, Culture and Education Influences and Benefits

Chinatown Preservation Issues and Possibilities


Transforming Chinatowns: Development Strategy & Planning

Transformation of Chinatowns and other (ethnic) neighbourhoods: Case Studies

Past and Present Chinatown Plans:  Approaches and Effectiveness

Politics, Civic Participation and Community Engagement in Chinatown Planning


Chinatowns of the Future: What Would This Look Like?

Future Chinatowns and How to Sustain Them

Centre of Chinese Community Life or Ethnic Tourist Destination: Can both co-exist in the future?

Technology for Community Engagement: Building Virtual Resources and Tools


Registration Fees:

Students: $25

Regular: $50

Register online.

Or fill out the registration form and submit it to the the Chinese Benevolent Association of Edmonton. 


Phone: 780-429-1914.

9645 101A Avenue 
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
T5H 0C8








     Registration Form(English)       Registration Form(Chinese) 



Speaker Bios
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