5 Reads and a podcast on integrated urban planning to read over the summer


By URBACT, on August 2nd, 2018

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Is the office quieter than usual? Would you have some time to catch up with some food for thought on urban integrated development or are you looking for the best book to take with you for the holidays?

From an interview with Renzo Piano to readings about how women will save the planet, here is a short list of inspirational material shared by URBACT Programme Experts Eddy Adams, Laura Colini and Sally Knewshaw.

Happy summer to all!


How to kill a city, gentrification inequality and the fight for the neighbourhood, by Peter Moskowitz

how-to-kill-a-cityThe term gentrification has become a buzzword to describe the changes in urban neighborhoods across the country, but we don’t realize just how threatening it is. It means more than the arrival of trendy shops, much-maligned hipsters, and expensive lattes. The very future of American cities as vibrant, equitable spaces hangs in the balance.

According to Gillian B. White in the Atlantic, Peter Moskowitz’s book outlines how local governments cede their power over residents’ lives to private interests.

The book includes case studies of four different American cities and -a hard-hitting analysis and warning about the future of cities as equitable spaces. Peter was keynote speaker at the first European Place making conference in Stockholm in 2018.

The New Localism, by Bruce Katz and Jeremy Nowak

the-new-localismThe New Localism provides a roadmap for change that starts in the communities where most people live and work. In their new book, The New Localism, urban experts Bruce Katz and Jeremy Nowak reveal where the real power to create change lies and how it can be used to address our most serious social, economic, and environmental challenges.

In The New Localism, Katz and Nowak tell the stories of the cities that are on the vanguard of problem solving. Pittsburgh is catalyzing inclusive growth by inventing and deploying new industries and technologies. Indianapolis is governing its city and metropolis through a network of public, private and civic leaders. Copenhagen is using publicly owned assets like their waterfront to spur large scale redevelopment and finance infrastructure from land sales.

The New Localism arrives at a time when cities are assuming an even greater role – in the United Kingdom and across the world – in driving modern economics and tackling some of the biggest challenges we face. As this continues at a pace, I’m sure the ideas in this book will help inform urban governance and finance for many years to come.” Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Why women will save the planet, by friends of the Earth and C40 cities

Why-Women-Will-Save-the-PlanetBig cities don’t have to mean a dystopian future. They can be turned around to be powerhouses of well-being and environmental sustainability – if we empower women.

The book showcases short articles, interviews, narratives about the experiences of 27 women involved in environmental activism around the globe: pioneering city mayors, key voices in the environmental and feminist movements, and academics. The essays collectively demonstrate both the need for women’s empowerment for climate action and the powerful change it can bring.

Divercities: Understanding Super Diversity in Deprived and Mixed Neighbourhoods, by Stijn OosterlynckGert Verschraegen and Ronald van Kempen

divercitiesHow do people deal with diversity in deprived and mixed urban neighbourhoods?  This edited collection provides a comparative international perspective on superdiversity in cities, with explicit attention given to social inequality and social exclusion on a neighbourhood level.

Although public discourses on urban diversity are often negative, this book focuses on how residents actively and creatively come and live together through micro-level interactions. By deliberately taking an international perspective on the daily lives of residents, the book uncovers the ways in which national and local contexts shape living in diversity.

The book includes analyses on the cities of Leipzig, Rotterdam and Antwerp, Warsaw, Vienna, Geneva, Ghent , Athens, Copenhaguen, Istanbul, London, Chicago and Santiago de Chile

The book will be a valuable resource for researchers and students of poverty, segregation and social mix, conviviality, the effects of international migration, urban and neighbourhood policies and governance, multiculturality, social networks, social cohesion, social mobility, and super-diversity.

The book will be out in November 2018.

The Battle for the infrastructure of ordinary life, by Dan Hill

An essay on how design should help get over individualism in order to make it possible for people who are different to live together.

Cities are where we come together in shared places. Cities are intrinsically about sharing, whether that’s the public pool, the street, an energy grid or a transport network; this is where the challenge is clearest, and most potent. Indeed the whole point of cities, paraphrasing Richard Sennett, is living together with people that are not like you

To read online here.

And a podcast!

Interview with Renzo Piano on the Arts and Ideas

renzo-pianoThe Italian architect and engineer, Renzo Piano, talks to Philip Dodd about his career from the Pompidou in Paris (with Richard Rogers) to the Shard in London and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. 50 years of his work are being marked in an exhibition at London’s Royal Academy of Arts from the 15th of September to the 20th of January 2019.


Cover photo: Kalkbreite co-housing, Zürich


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