NewCities Announces Call for Applications for Global Wellbeing City Award

  • Inaugural Wellbeing City Award is the first international prize to recognize cities worldwide committed to urban wellbeing.

Montréal, Canada – September 12, 2018. The NewCities Foundation, a global nonprofit committed to shaping a better urban future, today announced a call for applications for the 2019 Wellbeing City Award.

The Award recognizes cities for promoting innovative urban initiatives with a transformative impact on the wellbeing of their communities. Local governments can apply if their wellbeing initiatives:

  • display an achieved level of success;
  • demonstrate leadership;
  • include multiple stakeholders;
  • have potential for replicability;
  • feature innovative methods.

Cities will be invited to apply across the following categories:

  • Public Health
  • Sustainable Environment
  • Community
  • Economy & Opportunity

In addition to the category laureates, an overall laureate, the Wellbeing City, will be chosen by the jury. The five winning cities will be revealed at a major NewCities event in the Spring of 2019.

The annual Award has been developed by NewCities in partnership with the Novartis Foundation, the Novartis US Foundation, and in collaboration with the Toyota Mobility Foundation, City of Montréal, HuffPost Canada, Design Exchange Magazine, OpenGov Asia and Icons of Infrastructure.

John Rossant, Chairman, NewCities Foundation said: “The Wellbeing City Award has been created to showcase the most inspiring wellbeing initiatives from cities around the world and invite all cities to apply and be recognized for their commitment to improving the quality of life of their residents. We are excited to acknowledge local governments that serve as inspirations for other cities to improve wellbeing in their communities.”

Dr. Ann Aerts, Head of the Novartis Foundation said: “The Novartis Foundation is excited to recognize leaders and decision makers who are advancing bold urban health initiatives. This is an incredible opportunity for cities from across the global to share and learn from each other, to achieve improved health and wellbeing of cities for all.”

Amy Fry, President of the Novartis U.S. Foundation said: “The Novartis U.S Foundation is proud to partner with NewCities and we’re excited to help share innovative approaches which aim to improve the wellbeing of residents. Our aim is to create sustainable healthcare solutions to improve health outcomes for all.”

Valérie Plante, Mayor of the City of Montréal said: “As we recognise the global need to prioritize user-centred urban design, the City of Montréal places quality of life at the core of our urban policies. We are thrilled to be partnering with NewCities to launch the Wellbeing City Award and encourage all cities to participate and apply.”

Andree Lau, Editor-In-Chief,  HuffPost Canada said: “Often, the stories covered by media focus on ongoing problems. This Award allows us to see transformative solutions that could be replicated across communities, and to share the positive contributions cities are making in a sea of environmental and social change.”


Additional information

Nominations can be submitted by any non-municipal actor wishing to put forward a city promoting wellbeing. NewCities will then invite nominated cities to submit an application. The deadline for nominations is October 15 2018, 23:59 Eastern Time (ET).

Applications can only be submitted by an official city representative. NewCities welcomes applications from cities of all sizes by November 9 2018, 23:59 Eastern Time (ET).

Application and nominations are available from the NewCities website via

Media contact

Ashlee Biggs
Senior Communications and Media Relations Manager
+1 438 833 7276

About NewCities

NewCities is a global nonprofit committed to shaping a better urban future.
We envision a world where cities drive economic, social and environmental progress. We seek the most progressive and innovative ideas that will drive positive change in cities, large and small. We create a global dialogue and develop cutting-edge knowledge on the world’s most pressing urban issues. We connect and empower businesses, governments and civil society to accelerate the transition to sustainable cities. We leverage our unparalleled network to showcase how technology and innovation can tackle urban challenges.

About the Novartis Foundation

The Swiss-based Novartis Foundation is a philanthropic organization which strives to have sustainable impact on the health of low-income communities through a combination of programmatic work, health outcomes research, and its translation into policy to address global health challenges.

About the Novartis U.S. Foundation

The Novartis U.S. Foundation supports nonprofit organizations and community-based programs addressing a range of social and health issues with a focus on patient care and access, education, and disaster relief.