Cultural Conversations at the Summit - curated by the Global Cultural Districts Network

The Global Cultural Districts Network (GCDN) is a federation of global centers of arts and culture that fosters co-operation and knowledge-sharing among those responsible for conceiving, funding, building, and operating cultural districts. It is an initiative of the New Cities Foundation, Dallas Arts District, and AEA Consulting. In June of 2015, the Network will convene as part of the fourth annual New Cities Summit, taking place in Jakarta.

At the Summit, the GCDN will host sessions relating to arts and culture in cities, featuring artists and thought leaders who will discuss a variety of topics focused on cultural districts.

In addition to these discussions during the Summit, the GCDN will host a separate convening for its members and those interested in cultural districts on Monday, June 8. More details will be available soon here

At the Summit, the GCDN is hosting the following sessions:

Animating Our Public Spaces

Veni, Vidi, Vici – Cultural Tourism in the Century of Cities



Alan Chong, Director, Asian Civilisations Museum

Dr Alan Chong is director of the Asian Civilisations Museum and the Peranakan Museum – museums dedicated to exploring the historical connections between Asian cultures, and between Asia and the world.


Theresa Famularo, Producer, Cre8ion

Theresa Famularo is the Founder and Director of Cre8ion, a producing company specialising in a wide range of theatrical entertainment and large-scale events. Theresa has extensive experience both nationally and internationally beginning her career some twenty years ago in stage and production management moving into art direction and tour management. In the last seven years […]


Leslie Koch, President, The Trust for Governors Island

Leslie Koch is the president of The Trust for Governors Island. Governors Island is a 172 acre island in New York Harbor. Ms. Koch is responsible for the planning, redevelopment and on-going operation of the 150 acres of the Island owned by The Trust. Under her direction since 2006, Governors Island has been transformed from […]


Marcus Westbury, Founding Director, Renew Newcastle

Marcus Westbury is as an Australian urbanist, writer, broadcaster and festival director and consultant on cities, community building, culture and place activation. Marcus was the founder of Renew Newcastle a multi award wining project which has brokered access to more 70 properties for more than 170 creative projects, businesses and enterprises in Newcastle Australia and […]


Joe Sidek, Director, George Town Festival

With over thirty years of experience in the world of culture and creativity, Joe Sidek has established himself as one of Malaysia’s leading advocates of the arts. An industrialist by trade and an entrepreneur by nature, Mr Sidek has organized countless shows and performances for a number of organizations across Malaysia, including government-sponsored events. His […]


Gianluca Racana, Director, Zaha Hadid Architects

Gianluca is Director of Zaha Hadid Architects, one of the world’s leading practices in architecture and urban design. He holds a wide-ranging role in the strategic and operational management of the firm. He joined ZHA in 2000 and has since lead a wide range of cultural, infrastructural, residential and commercial projects in Europe, Middle East, […]


Purba Hutapea, Executive Director, Tourism and Culture Office, City of Jakarta

Dr. Purba Hutapea is the Head of the Tourism and Culture Department for the City of Jakarta. He has held many different positions in the City Government, including most recently, the Head of Population and Civil Registration, Regional Head of Foreign Cooperation, and within the Protocol Department. Along with his work with the City Government, […]


JT Singh, Managing Director, JT Singh & Company

JT Singh is a city-branding pioneer, media artist and economic strategist focused on city-regions. His team at JT Singh Labs based in Shanghai executes experimental Digital technologies + Urban strategy + Artistry initiatives to help cities powerfully engage with their global context. Many of JT's cross-disciplinary solutions are innovative firsts and often sets the standard […]


Sangeetha Thapa, Founder Director, Siddhartha Art Gallery

Sangeeta Thapa is founder and director of the Siddhartha Art Gallery in Kathmandu, and for 20 years has been actively involved in the promotion of contemporary art in Nepal. She has curated over 300 art shows of Nepali and international artists at Siddhartha Art Gallery. She co-ordinates workshops by visiting international artists with Nepali artists […]