Co-Present the 11th International Public Markets Conference

November 12, 2021

Market Cities, a partnership between Project for Public Spaces, HealthBridge Foundation of Canada, and Slow Food International, is looking for a host city to co-present the 11th International Public Markets Conference!

With everything the world has been through over the last two years, our last International Public Markets Conference hosted in London feels like a fond and distant memory. As we begin these early stages of conference planning, we’re already daydreaming about reuniting with old friends and visiting colorful markets.

Past attendees have been enthusiastic about the conference calling it “an opportunity to build [an] international network beyond belief,” and “one of the most valuable conferences in [the] field.” We hope the 2023 conference will be better than ever with a renewed appreciation of public markets as essential services that contribute to public health, social resilience, and equitable economic opportunities.

Conference History

The International Public Markets Conference launched in 1987 with the mission of connecting advocates, managers, government representatives, and everyone else involved in the markets field. Since then, the conference has taken place in Seattle, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Vancouver, Canada, New York, Washington DC, Barcelona, Spain, and London, UK.

Each host city and co-presenter has influenced the event’s programming. For example, through the 9th International Public Markets Conference, we had the opportunity to experience Barcelona’s vision of public markets which are treated as essential services much the same way as public utilities are. The City’s investment of over $150 million in public market renovations from 2011 to 2015 has ensured that every resident lives within a ten-minute walk of a public market.

Likewise, at the 10th International Public Markets Conference in London, we were inspired by Mayor Sadiq Khan’s formation of the London Markets Board, which recognizes the unique role of public markets for Londoners and the ongoing challenges they face. This team, established in 2017, and made up of industry leaders, market operators, and business leaders, is charged with evaluating the social impact of the city’s 280 markets and developing strategies that support and maximize their value.

We are looking forward to building upon the theme of Market Cities for the 11th International Public Markets Conference and working closely with the co-presenter to shape its agenda.

Benefits of Co-Presenting

The International Public Markets Conference provides a unique opportunity to showcase your city, town, or region’s public market scene and share innovative local policies and efforts related to markets. Conference participants will experience and learn about your community’s food and non-food markets as well as street vendors, community gardens, local entrepreneur hubs, mutual aid networks, and more.

“Hosting the 10th International Public Markets Conference was a stimulating and productive opportunity for our city, raising the profile and potential of markets at the highest levels.”

— Louise Duggan, Interim Head of Regeneration at the Greater London Authority

The last two conferences brought together an average of 350 market practitioners, leaders, and community advocates from 40 countries and over 115 cities, providing an incredible opportunity for the host city and conference participants to expand their global network of public market leaders.

It is our hope that the conference benefits the co-presenter and host city well beyond the three days of the conference itself. As Louise Duggan, who worked closely with us on our last conference in London, UK, describes, “The connections we made through the conference planning process have uncovered ambitious plans for markets across the city, are informing the strategic focus of the London Markets Board, and will benefit our work for years to come.”

Learn more about the co-presenter application process through the Request for Letters of Interest. The deadline to submit your letter is 11:59pm EST on December 17th, 2021. If you have any questions related to the process or your eligibility, please contact Market Cities Program Manager, Kurt Wheeler at IPMC@pps.org. We can’t wait to hear from you!



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