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“Third Places” in the U.S. – Sustainable Urban Development

July 16, 2015 - July 21, 2015

CCWA is pleased to welcome Mr. Sylvain Barfety, an international visitor from France traveling to the United States to learn about sustainable urban development. Specifically, Mr. Barfety will be examining “third places,” a sociological term referring to the social surroundings separate from the two usual social environments of home (“first place”) and the workplace (“second place”). Examples of third places would be environments such as cafes, clubs, or parks. In his influential book The Great Good Place, sociologist Ray Oldenburg argues that third places are important for civil society, democracy, civic engagement, and establishing feelings of a sense of place.

While here, Mr. Barfety will get a firsthand glimpse into some of Cleveland’s most important third spaces, including the Cleveland Museum of Art, the West Side Market, and organizations that promote sustainable urban development such as the Cuyahoga Land Bank, the Downtown Cleveland Alliance, and the City Planning Commission. Mr. Barfety will also get a glimpse of Cleveland’s growing “farm-to-table” culture with a visit to the Urban Farmer and see an up-and-coming project sponsored by the Rotary Club of Cleveland to create a large urban green space linking various West side neighborhoods along the old red line train track.

International Visitor Leadership (IVLP) Program

Each year, over 250 professionals from around the world visit Northeast Ohio through IVLP. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, these visitors have been identified by U.S. embassies as emerging leaders in their fields.  Over 50 Nobel Laureates and 335 current or former Chiefs of State or Heads of Government are alumni of this program. 

By connecting with foreign leaders we strengthen Northeast Ohio’s commercial, cultural, and educational ties with the rest of the world. For more information, contact Ryan Ouellette, Senior Program Officer, at or click here. To get involved as a Citizen Diplomat, click here.

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