People in a London street

Building better integrated communities: Mayoral conference

On 14 November the Mayor, Sadiq Khan, hosted the first ever Social Integration Conference at City Hall. It brought together city leaders and Mayors from across Europe to discuss how to build better, more unified communities.

Watch the conference

We filmed the whole conference throughout the day. Please note, some of the speeches will not be in English. 

Mayor of London's Social Integration Conference

About the conference

We want to make sure that people from different faiths, ethnicities, socio-economic groups and generations can relate to each other as neighbours and citizens. We want to help local communities deal with the pressures that come from rapid economic and social change.

If we don't try to deal with tensions within communities we risk holding back economic growth and limiting life chances. In the UK it's estimated that a lack of social integration costs the economy £6 billion, and leads to an increase in prejudice, unemployment and the fear of crime.

In a speech to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs in September, Sadiq argued that city leaders should play an active role in supporting social integration. 

This one-day conference begins this work. Mayors, city leaders and policy experts from across Europe will discuss how we can build better communities.

Agenda for the day

Time Subject Speakers
9:30 - 10:00 Introductory speech Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London
10:00 - 11:00 Discussion: Open cities, strong communities: Why integration matters

Chair: Sonia Sodha, The Observer

Karin Wanngård, Mayor of Stockholm

Ahmed Aboutaleb, Mayor of Rotterdam

Chuka Umunna, MP for Streatham

Cllr Nickie Aiken, Chair of Westminster City Council Community Cohesion Commission

David Robinson, Founder, Community Links

11:15 - 12:15 Discussion: Designing city spaces to promote community, connection and belonging

Chair: Madeleine Bunting, The Guardian

Frank Jensen, Lord Mayor of Copenhagen

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol

James Murray, Deputy Mayor of London for Housing

Alicia Glen, Deputy Mayor of New York for Housing and Economic Development

Dr Noha Nasser, Director, Mela Social Enterprise

12:15 - 13:00

Keynote speech: Making London a city of communities

Followed by a Q & A session

Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society of the Arts

Q & A led by Matthew Ryder, Deputy Mayor of London for Social Integration, Social Mobility and Communities

14:00 - 14:45


Followed by a Q & A session

Richard Sennett, Centennial Professor of Sociology, London School of Economics and Professor of the Humanities, New York University

Q & A led by Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

15:00 - 16:00 Breakout policy discussions - outlined below  
  1. Measuring how we live together

Chair: Hugh Muir, The Guardian

Professor Ted Cantle, Institute for Community Cohesion

Professor Miles Hewstone, Oxford Centre for the Study of Intergroup Conflict, University of Oxford

Timothy Phillips, CEO, Beyond Conflict

Jon Yates, Director, The Challenge

Irena Guidikova, Intercultural Cities Programme Manager, Council of Europe

  2. Reassessing the role of cities in national citizenship

Chair: Elizabeth Collett, Director, Migration Policy Institute Europe

Yvan Mayeur, Mayor of Brussels

Patrick Klugman, Deputy Mayor of Paris for International Relations

Sonia Lin, Policy Director, NYC Mayor's Office of Immigrant Affairs

Robert Annibale, Global Director, Citi Community Development

Phoebe Griffith, Associate Director of Migration, Integration and Communities, IPPR

  3. Creating new city spaces for bridging generational and social divides

Chair: Alex Smith, CEO, North London Cares & South London Cares

Raymond Johansen, Governing Mayor of Oslo

Daniël Termont, Mayor of Ghent

Alana Margaret Officer, Senior Health Adviser, World Health Organisation

Professor Anthea Tinker CBE, Professor of Social Gerentology, Institute of Gerontology, King’s College London

Torsten Bell, Director, Resolution Foundation

  4. New city strategies for overcoming economic exclusion

Chair: Professor Shamit Saggar, Professor of Public Policy, Institute for Social and Economic Research, University of Essex

Michael Häupl, Mayor of Vienna

Karin Wanngård, Mayor of Stockholm

Marik Fetouh, Deputy Mayor of Bordeaux for Equality and Citizenship

David Goodhart, Head of Demography, Immigration and Integration, Policy Exchange

Marc Stears, CEO, New Economics Foundation

16:15 - 17:15 Discussion: New city strategies for migrant and refugee integration

Chair: Mary Riddell, The Telegraph

Eberhard van der Laan, Mayor of Amsterdam

Georgios Kaminis, Mayor of Athens

Fernando Medina, Mayor of Lisbon

Sasha Havlicek, CEO, Institute for Strategic Dialogue

Dr Sarah Spencer CBE, Director, Global Exchange on Migration and Diversity and Senior Fellow, Centre for Migration, Policy and Society, Oxford University