ULI UK appoints BNP Paribas Real Estate research director as new chair

The Urban Land Institute (ULI) will announce at its UK annual conference on 23 May that Vanessa Hale, director of research at BNP Paribas Real Estate, will become chair of ULI UK from 1 July for a two-year term. As a non-profit education and research institute supported by its members, ULI has been providing leadership in the responsible use of land for more than 80 years.

Despite being ULI UK’s youngest ever chair, Chicago-born Hale boasts nearly 20 years of strategic research experience working across all real estate sectors in the UK and US. In her role as BNP Paribas Real Estate’s research director, Hale uses a variety of foresight and research methodologies to advise clients on investment and development strategies across all sectors.

Speaking at the ULI UK Annual Conference on 23 May, Hale will set out her plans for her tenure including major publications such as ULI’s Housing with Care guide and Harnessing Culture through Development, a guide to improve cultural interventions in buildings and places, to deliver both financial and social returns.

ULI plans to expand its Advisory Services programme, where ULI members and other urban experts provide objective advice to public, private and non-profit organisations on complex land use, urban development and policy challenges. It is also expanding UrbanPlan, its educational programme to help young people understand the role real estate plays in reviving and regenerating urban areas and to promote careers in the built environment.

Vanessa Hale, incoming ULI UK chair, said:

“Amid huge societal and technological change, cities have become focal points for innovation but also for disillusionment with global economic and political systems. As a global not-for-profit, ULI is needed more than ever. And if we are to tackle the challenges of climate change, housing, infrastructure and regeneration, it will require a broader, more inclusive conversations. As the global real estate industry, it is our responsibility to engage more closely with the public sector, sharing knowledge and expertise.”

Vanessa Hale succeeds AECOM vice president Chris Choa, with previous ULI UK chairs including PATRIZIA’s CIO Anne Kavanagh and Benson Elliot chairman Marc Mogull.

Liz Waller, executive director of ULI UK, said:

“Vanessa is a perfect example of how ULI can help shape a person’s career, having joined while a student, Vanessa has led numerous major thought-leadership initiatives while also giving back as a mentor, sharing her broad knowledge with young professionals. ULI has a unique position in the global industry and I am delighted to welcome Vanessa as chair to make further progress in raising standards and driving forward education.”

Chris Choa, chairman of ULI UK, said:

“I’m delighted that Vanessa will be the new ULI UK Chair. She has made extraordinary contributions to ULI over many years, and she will generate new insights as she leads our focus on urban land. As a global organisation with strong local roots, we have a unique role as a hub for individuals, institutions, and industries with an interest in cities. Our fearless commitment to best practice, urban advocacy, and education has never been more vital.”