Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon has been selected as the winner of the Gothenburg Award for Sustainable Development 2016 in recognition of his efforts in leading Seoul as one of the world’s “sharing cities.” The Gothenburg Award for Sustainable Development is given each year to individuals or organizations for outstanding performance and achievements towards a sustainable future. Mr. Park Won-soon is the first Korean and the second Asian to receive the award.
Previous winners of the award include former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and the Toyota Research Institute of Japan.
The jury of this year’s award noted, “Seoul has developed various forms of effective sharing by changing regulations, mobilizing the city’s underused resources, and making information readily accessible. The city has also raised public awareness and supported companies and initiatives in the sharing of information and assets.”
Mr. Park Won-soon intends to disclose the policies and plans adopted and implemented by Seoul as a sharing city and upgrade the status of the city at the award presentation ceremony to be held in Gothenburg, Sweden in November this year. Under his stewardship, the City of Seoul began proactively adopting the idea of Sharing Economy in 2012 in a bid to solve urban issues such as the shortage of parking lots and environmental pollution. The city’s accomplishments in such a short period of time have drawn the attention of people around the world.
Commenting on his selection for the award, Mayor Park Won-soon said, “I led a sharing-related social movement through Beautiful Store with a focus on resource recycling toward the end of the 1990s. Since my inauguration as Seoul Mayor, I have strived to solve urban issues based on the idea of a Sharing Economy. I think that this award belongs to all officials and people in Seoul, who have taken part in these efforts. We will continue our efforts for sustainable growth for all.”