Welcome to the WWCAM Website!


The World Winter Cities Association for Mayors (WWCAM) is a network of winter cities around the world that provides members with opportunities to meet and learn from each other about winter technologies and experiences under the slogan “Winter is a Resource and an Asset.” The association, originally the Northern Intercity Conference of Mayors, was initiated by the city of Sapporo in 1981, and the following year the first Mayors Conference was held. In 2004 the organization became the World Winter Cities Association for Mayors.


In the past conferences, mayors have discussed various issues such as city planning, winter transportation, snow clearing and removal, waste recycling, tourism promotion and resources development, and learned from each other’s experiences and wisdom in order to obtain hints for “city development” and to learn about measures for overcoming severe climatic conditions.


Currently, 22 cities from 9 countries participate as Member Cities of the Association.


The Mayor of Sapporo has served as President of the World Winter Cities Association for Mayors since its establishment, and the Secretariat is located at the International Relations Department of the City of Sapporo.


First Conference, Sapporo (1982)



Significance of the WWCAM

Member of the International Community

As one can see from the present state of global environmental issues, recent years have seen an increase in the number of challenges that countries and regions around the world must work together to solve. In order to tackle these issues, not only nations and international organizations but also local governments must cooperate with cities throughout the world as members of the international community.


Accordingly, those northern cities aiming to fulfill their roles and reponsibilities as world cities are expected to assist and cooperate with other northern cities faced with similar problems, by making use of the latest technology for cold and snowy environments and knowledge of city planning. Furthermore, each city should incorporate the knowledge and experience it has obtained from other northern cities into the goal of city development and mutually cooperate with other northern cities in order to solve various issues.


Creation of Livable Winter Cities

The results of overseas exchanges are reflected in various forms of city planning which, although they may take time to have a visible impact, eventually exert a great influence in terms of the long-term effects of exchange on the lives of citizens. By taking the time to have these interactions with one another, winter cities create tangible and intangible assets that are indispensable for each city.



Greeting from the President

Although winter poses many challenges to the citizens of winter cities, it is also a blessing that brings much charm and allure to our cities. For instance, snow which is an affluent source of water supply and a tourism resource in winter, is a precious asset for the citizens of winter cities. Under the philosophy, “winter is a resource and an asset,” the first Mayors Conference was convened in Sapporo in 1982, and since then it has taken place biennially with the purpose of giving fellow mayors, the CEOs of city management, an opportunity to gather together, discuss face-to-face and share knowledge on city planning and other common problems that often face cities with harsh cold and heavy snowfall. In this manner, outcomes of the past conferences have been adopted into city planning.


Your understanding of the WWCAM philosophy and activities through this website is greatly appreciated, as it is a way to mutually work towards our goal of creating comfortable winter cities together. Therefore, I cordially invite you to become a member of the World Winter Cities Association for Mayors.


President, World Winter Cities Association for Mayors
Mayor of Sapporo
Akimoto Katsuhiro



Major WWCAM Activities

World Winter Cities Conference for Mayors

The biennial World Winter Cities Conference for Mayors (Mayors Conference), a major activity of the association, has been convened 19 times since its founding. The conference provides a forum for mayors and city administrators to share expertise and experience on city planning, urban transportation in winter, snow removal, recycling, winter tourism, and other topics common to member cities.


Participants gain valuable suggestions on comfortable city planning and techniques to overcome challenges caused by harsh climates. The site of the Mayors Conference rotates among member cities willing to host the event.


Fourteenth Conference, Maardu (2010)


Winter EXPO & Winter Cities Forum

The host city of a Mayors Conference may organize a Winter Expo and a Winter Cities Forum in conjunction with the conference.


The host city, along with businesses and organizations of member cities, realizes an exhibition of a range of winter-related products at the Winter Expo.


The Winter Cities Forum provides experts and academic researchers, as well as local citizens, with an opportunity to make presentations on winter-related issues, such as lifestyle and city planning. Since the third conference in 1988, the Winter Cities Forum has been held in conjunction with each of the Mayors Conferences.


The addition of the Winter Expo and the Winter Cities Forum to the World Winter Cities Conference for Mayors has greatly increased the scale and significance of the conference.


Winter Expo



The WWCAM subcommittees conduct research and case studies and exchange information on winter technology.


The subcommittees for “Waste Reduction and Recycling,” “Winter Recreation and Tourism,” “Sustainable Winter Cities Planning,” and “Measures Against Terrorism in Northern Cities” are examples of WWCAM subcommittees that have compiled reports on their research.


WWCAM subcommittee reports


Working-Level Officials Meetings

Working-Level Officials Meetings allow senior administrators of member cities to meet and discuss the theme of an upcoming Mayors Conference, as well as issues related to the management of conferences.


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