urban age – testing ground for urban future

May 15 •

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URBAN AGE is a worldwide series of conferences investigating the future of cities by thoroughly studying the life, evolution and growth of certain cities throughout the world: 


a six-year project organised by the london school of economics, directed by ricky burdett, that explores the economic, environmental, social, political and cultural processes that shape city life. it aims to construct the framework for a developing network of individuals that exchanges information, experiences and data.

a series of cities have been selected from all continents and each year a number of them are analysed in depth and a conference is held at one of them. they also publish a “newspaper” compiling the key results of the investigation of each city (you can download them from their website).

4 are the core themes of the investigation:

- labour market and work place        
- public life and urban space
- mobility and transport
- housing and neighbourhoods

alongside, other broader issues are studied:

- investment and economic development
- planning and legal structures
- sustainability and energy consumption
- political economy and networking cities

the project works with both global and local experts at each city and the conferences and publications aim to put together all the information. the objective is to identify what trends and policies are failing to respond to local needs, resulting in the continued propagation of dysfunctional urban areas across the globe.

they have recently published the endless city, a book compiling all the research carried out on the cities of new york, shanghai, london, mexico city, johannesburg and berlin.

watch this space for further information about this project.

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