Contents05 | Foreword07 | Future cities: a perspective12 | Regulatory environment: the changing dynamics29 | Managing risks for long-term sustainability41 | Technology: the game changer58 | Green practices: an option and a necessity
A sustainable city measures itself at the moment in qualitative terms – by theleadership and governance arrangements that are in place to ensure that thecharacteristics of a sustainable city are funded, protected, influenced and managedeffectively. For example:• what policy statements and commitments have been made to tackle climate change and sustainability?• how are these policies tied to the strategic long-term planning for the city?• how informatively are carbon emissions and energy usage measured?• how are responsibilities for climate change, energy use and sustainability managed across the city?• what level of collaboration exists between the city authorities, other public sector bodies, third sector and businesses to deliver an agenda focused on the city itself?• how successfully are behaviours being changed to move towards households and businesses becoming sustainable? And what is the role played by communities in this process?
The importance of transparencyWhile there are various reasons for the position in which the real estate sector finds itselftoday, there should be no question that improved transparency is required.Real estate has emerged as a mainstream investment asset class, with explosive growth incross-border capital investment via direct equity and indirect asset-backed capital marketsproducts. Within this context of globally distributed and highly leveraged real estate riskexposure, the bursting of the real estate asset bubble yielded disastrous consequences formany investors and lenders.A lack of investment in market transparency and risk management has allowed assetperformance data to remain siloed, tangled, disparate and error-prone. Data inconsistency,incompleteness and fragmented information flows mean that investors are making businessdecisions with a limited grasp of the far-reaching financial, risk and compliance implications.While the boom years for real estate allowed this situation to proliferate, today‟s marketpressures on asset valuations and profit margins, combined with a tsunami of regulations,make appropriate risk management and true investment transparency a prerequisite forattracting and retaining capital going forward. Successful investors will be the ones who canretrieve accurate data, translate it consistently and present it according to user requirements.