World Capital of Architecture 2023 Copenhagen

Press Release


Copenhagen commits to be the World Capital of Architecture in 2023. On the 5th of May 2020, the Finance Committee in the City of Copenhagen, chaired by Lord Mayor Frank Jensen, has accepted being named the next UIA/UNESCO World Capital of Architecture in 2023.

Copenhagen will be only the second city to bear the title, the first being Rio de Janeiro in 2020, which is the result of a recent collaboration between UIA (International Union of Architects) and UNESCO. The title of World Capital of Architecture coincides with the UIA World Congress of Architects being held in Copenhagen from the 2nd – 7th of July 2023. The congress takes place once every 3 years.

Activities during World Capital of Architecture 2023 Copenhagen will be developed in close dialogue between the City of Copenhagen, UIA, UNESCO and the secretariat for the UIA World Congress of Architects 2023.

We are thrilled that Copenhagen is ready to become the 2023 UNESCO/UIA World Capital of Architecture and we now look forward to working out the details,” said Thomas Vonier, President of the UIA. “Copenhagen is the ideal city to follow Rio de Janeiro, offering the world a fantastic contrast in how architecture helps major global cities to meet the varying challenges of 21st century urban life,” he added.

Architecture affects all societies. The current COVID-19 pandemic shows us how architecture and design can help us adapt in times of crisis, and to change the future for the better. Architecture can help communities to recover and rebuild, applying lessons that help to avoid future health and environmental catastrophes. Architecture is a great force for social good when we design and build responsibly,” Vonier concluded.


The title of World Capital of Architecture is poised to help shape the cultural agenda of Copenhagen in 2023; it will address the people of the city by highlighting examples of thoughtful, sustainable architecture and create increased public awareness.

The World Congress of Architects takes place in Copenhagen later that year, July 2-7, and as 10-15,000 professionals arrive to discuss architecture under the theme of “Sustainable Futures – Leave No One Behind”, the foundation for a more public discussion of architecture has hopefully been laid.

“We want to bring together architects and the people they’re creating the architecture for – we hope Copenhagen’s title as World Capital of Architecture will open a dialogue and that the professionals participating in the UIA congress will listen. We want to democratize architecture and address social needs through architecture while protecting the planet” says Natalie Mossin, President of UIA 2023 CPH and co-chair of the UIA Commission on the UN Sustainable Development Goals.


Update: The main page for Copenhagen’s role as World Capital of Architecture is now (the webpage is in Danish at the moment, but it will soon feature a version in English as well).

Questions can be directed to the Programme Manager, Kristine Munkgård Pedersen, at or on: +45 51 18 06 66

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