On Resilient Settlement

Tools and strategies for transition

LSE researchers: Beware of “build baby build” approaches

“Upzoning is far from the progressive policy tool it has been sold to be. It mainly leads to building high-end housing in desirable locations.” As many of us have long argued, … Continue reading

October 19, 2019 · Leave a comment

Five Key Takeaways from the World Urban Forum

The hard work proceeds to implement the New Urban Agenda It’s been over a year now since all 193 countries of the United Nations adopted by acclamation the “New Urban … Continue reading

July 15, 2018 · Leave a comment

Horizons of Pattern Languages

The well-known 1970s innovation in the field of architecture has spawned many surprising developments in other fields, notably software — but why has it not had more success in the … Continue reading

January 27, 2018 · Leave a comment

Watch out for those “externality costs!”

I think the name of the game nowadays is not left and right, not populist and elitist, not rural and urban. It’s the Tragedy of the Commons, and we’re all … Continue reading

June 24, 2017 · Leave a comment

How pedestrian-connected cities may actually be smarter cities

New insights into neuroscience offer some intriguing parallels to urban dynamics – suggesting an “urban connectome” may be the key to city vitality.     A few years ago, the … Continue reading

January 4, 2017 · Leave a comment

A tale of two urban futures

Urbanism will play a key role in a choice between an “age of human capital” and an age of depletion and division. Before she died, the great urbanist Jane Jacobs … Continue reading

January 4, 2017 · Leave a comment

Urban Acupuncture in Medellin, Colombia

A case study of strategies for catalytic self-organization One of the recurrent themes of this blog is that urban self-organization is a powerful dynamic that ought to be of more interest (and use) to urban designers, planners and other actors. Th…

October 21, 2012 · 4 Comments

Toward a Theory of “Place Networks”

Two very different examples of place networks, not far from each other in London. Top photo, Seven Dials, offering a very complex, rich network, serving human users at a very high level of quality. Lower photo, an impoverished network, serving mac…

May 6, 2012 · 2 Comments

Does Paris need tall buildings to be “modern?”

A report from a fact-finding delegation of the Council for European Urbanism (including this author) evaluates three new projects with tall buildings in the central city, and concludes the City is damaging centuries of heritage for short-term gain…

March 21, 2012 · Leave a comment

Explaining the “Dark Greenness” of cities

New research suggests there’s a surprisingly large hidden benefit from the network structures of urbanism – but we need new models to harness this powerful resource Author’s Note: This is a longer version of an article that first ran in The Atlant…

February 27, 2012 · Leave a comment