The Center seeks to integrate human and organizational capacity building into all initiatives. In select cases, the focus of an initiative is a short or long term training program. For example, over the past seven years, the Center and its Board Members have trained 500 + senior public and private officials in the planning, urban design, construction and energy sectors. The Center’s partners for this training have included the Ministry of Land and Resources, the Ministry of Construction, the City of Guangzhou/Ministry of Finance and the Shanghai Economic Commission. The Center’s secretariats and Board have an ongoing review to determine where there may be other targeted areas to provide future training and capacity building. We invite you to contact the U.S. Secretariat if you have a proposal for a new training program or if you wish to contribute to an existing one.

Highlight: Sustainable Land Use Training Program

Based on a June 2000 agreement with China’s Ministry of Land and Resources, the Center, in partnership with Portland State University’s College of Urban and Public Affairs designed a training program to share experiences in sustainable land use planning and development for land use professionals from throughout China.

An objective of this program is to support China’s efforts to protect and restore watersheds, agricultural and forest lands and to sustainably manage rural to urban transition areas. China established the Ministry of Land and Resources in 1998 to design and administer a nationwide program to plan and develop lands to both protect the environment and promote sustainable development. This is the largest and most comprehensive such program in the world.


Over the course of seven years and fourteen training sessions, more than 400 senior officials from the ministry in Beijing and from provincial and local governments througought all regions of China have participated in the program. The training involves an intensive series of presentations, site tours and workshops in Portland, Oregon coupled with comparative site tours and presentations in other US cities.

The results of the training are already being applied with the impact of the program tracked through periodic evaluations and site visits in China.

Highlight: Sustainable Urban Planning and Design Training Program

he Sustainable Urban Planning and Design Training Program was established in early 2003 through a five-year agreement with China’s Ministry of Construction. Convened in partnership with Portland State University’s College of Urban and Public Affairs and the University’s Executive Leadership Institute, the program focuses on the planning, preservation and development of urban areas and new towns. The program shares US experiences – successes and failures – in land use planning and zoning, urban renewal, green buildings, nature in the city, consensus building and citizen participation.

The inaugural session was convened in March 2004 with a ten-member delegation from China’s Ministry of Construction, representing six provinces and autonomous regions. The intensive twelve-day Program engaged over 40 academic, business and government experts to share their experiences and explore new opportunities for cooperation at the national and local levels. To date, the program has trained over 80 senior officials from the central ministry, provinces and city governments from throughout China.

The impact of the training is evaluated through site visits and follow up with the trainees in their work environments.