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Pippin Anderson,  Cape Town

Cities are ecosystems of people, nature, and infrastructure
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  • Pippin Anderson

    Pippin Anderson

    Department of Environmental and Geographical Science and
    The African Centre for Cities
    University of Cape Town, South Africa

    Pippin Anderson works at the University of Cape Town in South Africa where she is lecturer and director of graduate studies in the Department of Environmental and Geographical Science and urban ecology researcher at the African Centre for Cities. With a Masters degree in Conservation Biology and a PhD in Plant Ecology, Pippin has always had an interest in peopled-landscapes. In the last few years she has turned her interests to urban ecosystems and this informs her current teaching and research. Pippin lives in a dense suburb close to the city centre in Cape Town, yet from her roof (she goes up there for purposes of sanity) she can see Table Mountain National Park. She loves this dichotomy where city and nature must coexist, with their different temporal and spatial scales, and each so variably imagined by the population of the City. She enjoys grappling with the messiness of the ecology of human dominated landscapes.

    July 22, 2015

    ANother favourite garden_TOC photoFEATURE
    How Does Your Garden Grow? Stories from South African Gardeners
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    Why do we plant what we do in our personal gardens? It turns out it’s driven by a complicated mix of personal philosophy and social posturing, which sometimes are at odds. And, it turns out, in South Africa and many...

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    January 7, 2015

    WTB 2
    Small Civic-Led Indigenous Planting Schemes: Simply Feel Good Stuff or a Real Ecological Contribution?
    Georgina Avlonitis, Cape Town
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    “Because then it becomes a beautiful self-driven machine. Nature driving people driving nature. Where the word is spread and the pride is shared and spread and it spills over (in the community). Everyone wants to feel proud of something that...

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    November 2, 2014

    The celebration of the living (who reflect upon death). Apulia, Italy 2010. Photo: Emilio Fantin
    How can art (in all its forms), exhibits, installations and provocations be a better catalyst to raise awareness, support and momentum for urban nature and green spaces? 
    Jennifer Adams, New York City
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town
    Marielle Anzelone, New York City
    Stephanie Britton, Byron Bay, NSW
    Pauline Bullen, Harare
    Tim Collins, Glasgow
    Emilio Fantin, Milan
    Lloyd Godman, Melbourne
    Julie Goodness, Stockholm
    Noel Hefele, Brooklyn
    Todd Lester, Säo Paulo
    Patrick Lydon, San Jose & Seoul
    Elliott Maltby, New York City
    Mary Miss, New York
    Lorenza Perelli, Chicago
    Stephanie Radok, Adelaide
    Lisa Terreni, Wellington
    Shawn Van Sluys, Guelph

    34 Comment(s)
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    July 7, 2014

    Holzer picture_urban youth
    How much should we worry about exotic species in urban zones? How do we reduce damage from exotic invasives when management resources are limited? Are there conflicts between management or eradication efforts and building general support for urban biodiversity?
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town
    David Burg, New York City
    Mark Davis, Saint Paul
    Ana Faggi, Buenos Aires
    Katie Holzer, Davis
    Madhusudan Katti, Fresno
    Deborah Lev, Portland
    Timon McPhearson, New York
    Matt Palmer, New York City
    Toby Query, Portland
    Glenn Stewart, Christchurch
    Paula Villagra & Carmen Silva, Los Rios, Chile
    Peter Werner

    24 Comment(s)
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    June 18, 2014

    Local kids throwing seed bombs
    Driving Social and Ecological Change: My Experiment with Guerilla Gardening
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    Spurred on by some students who asked me earlier in the year what sort of personal activism I pursue in relation to my views around the importance of forwarding and preserving functioning urban ecologies, I decided to embark on a...

    2 Comment(s)
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    December 14, 2013

    Save the rhino girl
    What Does Urban Nature-Related Graffiti Tell Us? A Photo Essay from the City of Cape Town
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    Graffiti, revered and loathed by turn, provides insights into societal attitudes and perceptions. In this short photo essay I present nature-related graffiti from the City of Cape Town. Cape Town still bares the hallmarks of apartheid with significant race-based development...

    6 Comment(s)
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    December 3, 2013

    Photo Phil Petersen (3)
    Money for urban biodiversity is scarce. What is the single most important idea, program or action any city should undertake to promote biodiversity?
    Ana Faggi, Buenos Aires
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town
    John Kostyack, Washington, D.C.
    Bram Gunther, New York
    Peter Werner
    Andre Mader, Montreal
    David Maddox, New York City

    20 Comment(s)
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    May 15, 2013

    Though There is Method, There is Madness In It: How Silos of Methods Impede Cross-Cutting Research
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    I have three jobs—lecturer, facilitator of academic research, and mother of two nature-engaged kids. My three experiences lead me to think we have a core problem in urban social-ecology: that we let our fealty to discipline-specific methods get in the...

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    February 13, 2013

    What We Want and What We Don’t: Forging an Urban Nature that Works for Everyone
    Pippin Anderson, Cape Town

    Its 11 o’clock on a Saturday night and my husband and I have just returned home from a dinner party. Driving home we encountered Chital deer (Axis axis) grazing outside the Table Mountain National Park boundary and right on the...

    2 Comment(s)
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