Chengdu Promotes Its Image as Beautiful, Livable Park City in Greece

Authors: Zhong Ying


Over the recent years, Chengdu has been making a great effort to practice a new idea and create a new model of urban growth.
On November 27, 2019 local time, the three-day 4th Annual Conference of the International Place Branding Association (IPBA) kicked off in Volos, a costal city by the Aegean Sea in central Greece. It witnessed the attendance of hundreds of experts, industry practitioners, and university students from across the world who are involved in the place branding and marketing fields from a professional or an academic perspective. The guests probed into such topics of common concerns as the sustainable development of place branding and marketing and urban growth, place branding with Chinese characteristics and the brand implications of the Belt and Road Initiative, and destination branding and the formation of destination identity, etc. At the meeting, a delegation from Chengdu made a presentation on the city's practice of city branding for sustainable urban development in the recent years, which sparked heated discussions among the attendees.
Chengdu Promotes Its Image as Beautiful, Livable Park City in Greece
A Chengdu delegate makes a presentation on the city at the 4th Annual Conference of the IPBA.
Over the recent years, Chengdu, to develop green economy and achieve sustainable growth, has been making a great effort to practice a new idea and create a new model of urban growth. That is, to build a beautiful and livable park city. One of its major initiatives and actions is building the Tianfu Greenway. It aims to make the city's urban and rural growth more balanced, the relationship between the city and its people more harmonious, and the life of local citizens happier and more comfortable.
During the presentation, the Chengdu delegation gave a brief introduction to the city's long history and profound culture, rapid economic and social development, as well as its unremitting effort to turn itself into a beautiful and livable "Park City" by building the Tianfu Greenway.
Chengdu Promotes Its Image as Beautiful, Livable Park City in Greece
A group photo of IPBA board members and Chengdu delegates
"Currently, the Tianfu Greenway has become an immense ecological system. Along and around it, there are forests, rivers, water channels, parks and gardens, lakes, wetlands, farmlands, industrial zones, business centers, and urban and rural residential quarters. It has turned the city into a huge sprawling park, which has offered abundant application scenarios for the laidback lifestyle of local people," a Chengdu delegate told the guests.
"I've been to Chengdu for three times, 25 years ago, in 2016 and in July this year, respectively. My latest impression of the city is that it has changed so much compared with 25 years ago. I can't summarize or describe it with one or several words," said Mr. Robert Govers, Chairman of the IPBA, noting that "I enjoy and appreciate very much the unique idea and practice of Chengdu's city branding. Its building of the brand 'Park City' by constructing the Tianfu Greenway well shows the city managers' vision, ambition and ability. The 'Park City' is people-oriented and makes the relationship between its people and the city more harmonious, and the local citizens' life better and happier."
Chengdu Promotes Its Image as Beautiful, Livable Park City in Greece
Mr. Robert Govers, Chairman of the IPBA, reads a brochure on the city of Chengdu.
Established in 2016, the IPBA is a non-profit independent association of academics, professionals and other individuals involved or interested in the principles and practices of brand development and brand management for places (cities, regions, nations and destinations). It convenes its annual meeting in different cities across the world, in collaboration with local partners. The conference is an academic event with the highest professional level in the global research field of place branding and marketing.
The IPBA started its preparations for its fourth edition of the event in the first half of this year. After having learned Chengdu's initiative to build a unique urban brand, the beautiful and livable 'Park City', it specially organized a parallel session themed "Place Branding with Chinese Characteristics and the Brand Implications of the Belt and Road Initiative", and invited Chengdu to make a presentation first at the session. It is the first time that the IPBA has presented a session focusing on China, and has had a Chinese city as a speaker, since its inception.
Chengdu Promotes Its Image as Beautiful, Livable Park City in Greece
Chengdu-themed brochures and post cards attract great attention during the event.
"I'm very happy to see Chengdu's presence at the grand event, which has brought together lots of prestigious experts engaged in the research of city branding and marketing from all over the world. Their frontier theories and rich practical experience will certainly be useful for Chengdu in the internationalization of its city branding and marketing. They will let the world know better about the city's beauty and green growth. I hope very much that Chengdu could involve more in the world agenda-setting of place branding from a strategic perspective, and do it better by using more scientific way and more rational structure of brands in its top-level design of city branding and marketing," said Professor Fan Hong, Director of the City Branding Studio, Tsinghua University, and moderator of the China session during the event.
She also made a suggestion for Chengdu that the city should make a good use of its unique brand "Park City", because it embodies the city's people-centered concept and reflects the world's common pursuit of sustainable development. "I firmly believe that the Tianfu Greenway will make Chengdu more ecological and greener, and its people healthier and happier," she said.

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