ARUP – Associate Director, Inclusive and Resilient Cities Lead

Sara Candiracci is an urban planner, programme manager and social researcher with 19 years of professional experience in the field of inclusive and resilient urban development and planning, with a focus on vulnerable urban contexts. She currently leads the Inclusive and Resilient Cities portfolio of Arup International Development, and Arup’s work on child-centred design and planning. Sara holds a PhD in urban planning, with a thesis on the role of cultural heritage in social inclusion and place-making in East Africa.
With the Bernard van Leer Foundation she has led the development of the Proximity of Care Design Guide to support the design of child-friendly interventions in vulnerable contexts. With the Real Play Coalition (LEGO Foundation, Unicef, National Geographic, IKEA), Sara is leading the “Reclaiming Play in Cities” initiative, aiming at developing participatory approaches to design and implement play-based interventions in the urban space.
Her passion lies in working with multidisciplinary teams, using applied research and stakeholder engagement and participation as entry point to innovation and sustainable transformation.

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