AScUS (un)Conference

We are excited to announce keynotes by Jessica Seddon, former Director of Integrated Urban Strategy at the World Resource Institute, and Paul Zimmerman, Councillor for the Southern District in Hong Kong and CEO of Designing Hong Kong. The keynotes will be held on June 3rd, during the opening session, and on June 4th, before we start the second day. Read more.

AScUS-2020 is a participants-driven (un)conference with the mission to engage attendees to stimulate in-depth discussions. The event will not feature any individual presentations; instead, all contributions from participants will have to be submitted online ahead of time. Discussion topics will also be selected by the participants ahead of the event.

The (un)conference will start with a virtual component several weeks before the conference, when the participants will be expected to submit their contribution, to start generating discussions and sharing knowledge among participants. See below for details. The (un)conference will then culminate with a two and a half day virtual event at IE University in Segovia.


The schedule of the conference, including important dates and deadlines.


AScUS uses the WoW Room, developed by IE University.


Learn more about the cost of attending the unconference.

NOTE on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the AScUS (un)conference:
Given the current situation, the AScUS (un)conference will be held virtually. The current dates for the (un)conference (June 3–5) remain unchanged.

(Un)conference Remote Format

A pre-conference survey will then be sent to group people based on common interest (e.g., an engineer seeks to discuss with a political scientist). All participants will also be given access to the contributions from all participants that were submitted by May 15th. All participants will be asked to record a short 1-minute video introduction of themselves, to which all participants will have access ahead of the events. Two weeks before the conference, the groups will be asked to meet virtually.

At the conference, all participants will join in together the first day. For the next two half-days, discussion sessions will occur, remotely on the topics selected by the participants ahead of time and run by a session moderator. Every discussion session will lead to a Path to Action document that will be posted on the conference website at the end of the conference. In the last half-day, all participants will gather again together for a final discussion.

Details on the format will be posted / updated before the conference.

Organizing Committee

The conference is organized by a group of researchers based in Asia, North America, Europe and Africa, who met as part of the Sustainable Urban Systems (SUS) section of the International Society for Industrial Ecology (ISIE). While it is an independent event, the (un)conference is organized in close collaboration with Metabolism of Cities. Feel free to contact any of them for questions related to the (un)conference. The organizing committee is composed of:

  • Matan Mayer (host) | IE University |
  • Shauhrat Chopra | City University of Hong Kong |
  • Sybil Derrible | University of Illinois at Chicago |
  • Paul Hoekman | Metabolism of Cities |
  • Carolin Bellstedt | Metabolism of Cities |
  • Aristide Athanassiadis | Metabolism of Cities |
  • Eugene Mohareb | University of Reading |
  • Kangkang Tong | Princeton University |
  • Anne Ventura | University Gustave Eiffel |