Many voices. Greener cities. Better cities.

ESSAYS

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Green Infrastructure is Infrastructure: Future Opportunities for Nature in Cities
Will Allen,  Chapel Hill

“Both [US political] parties agree: Trees are infrastructure. The bipartisan infrastructure deal moving through the Senate includes at least $5.75 billion for restoring, monitoring and researching forests, according to the legislative text and summary. Beyond money, the package also includes policies that could make it easier to prepare for wildfires. That’s a significant slice of the deal’s $46 billion resilience...

Two Reflections: Thinking About Blackness, Ecology, and Architecture in the United States
Steward Pickett,  Poughkeepsie
Brian McGrath,  New York City

Read Brian McGrath’s reflection. Does architecture have a “color”? by Steward Pickett Does architecture have a “color”? In the United States, the answer seems to be yes. Architecture in the U.S. has been practiced largely by and for white people. Indeed, Glenn Lowry, Director of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City said, “American government and industry...

Repenser la protection de la nature dans le contexte des Objectifs du Développement Durable
Rethinking Nature Protection in the Context of the Sustainable Development Goals

Stéphanie Lux,  Paris
Elisabeth Chouraki,  Paris
Ingrid Coetzee,  Cape Town

Read this in English. Repenser la protection de la nature dans le contexte des Objectifs du Développement Durable en articulant action locale et régionale avec les politiques nationales et internationales Un constat sans appel Sur la base des listes rouges produites par l’UICN, le Chief scientist de l’IUCN, Thomas Brooks alerte sur le rythme sans précédent de l’érosion de la...

Nature Fix for Healthy Cities: What Planners and Designers Need to Know for Planning Urban Nature with Health-benefits in Mind
Takemi Sugiyama,  Melbourne
Farahnaz Sharifi,  Melbourne
Zirui Yao,  Canberra
Prabhasri Herath,  Canberra
Niki Frantzeskaki,  Melbourne

What the pandemic we live in revealed is something we knew, experienced, but had not well-evidenced at scale: nature in cities is fundamental for maintaining and regaining our physical and mental health. There is a broad literature on the benefits of green space for promoting physical activity and health, reducing obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular and cardiometabolic risk. Green space can...

VIRTUAL ROUNDTABLES

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How can nature-based solutions (NBS) provide the basis for a nature-based economy?
John Bell,  Brussels |  Guilherme Castagna,  São Paulo |  Emre Eren,  London |  Susanne Formanek,  Wien |  Tiago Fritas,  Brussels |  Rhoda Gwayinga,  Kampala |  Simon Gresset,  Freiburg |  Eduardo Guerrero,  Bogotá |  Mamuka Gvilava,  Tbilisi |  Cecilia Herzog,  Rio de Janeiro |  Antonia Lorenzo,  Málaga |  David Maddox,  New York |  Rupesh Madlani,  London |  Taícia H. N. Marques,  Lima |  Ana Mitić-Radulović,  Belgrade |  Hans Müller,  Kornwestheim |  Isaac Mugumbule,  Kampala |  David Simon,  London |  Audrey Timm,  Chilton |  Ellie Tonks,  Amsterdam |  Naomi Tsur,  Jerusalem |  Domenico Vito,  Milan | 
Innovations from the Post-COVID-19 City CoLab Challenge
Amal al Balushi,  Aachen |  Georgia Bertagna,  Parma |  Thomas Beery,  Kristianstad |  Charlotte Britton,  Munich |  Jenna Cardinale,  New York |  Davide Geneletti,  Trento |  Eva Hoppmanns,  Aachen |  Dana Johnston,  Munich |  Vanessa Kucharski,  Aachen |  Audrey Leung,  Munich |  Mareeya Mitmana,  Munich |  Siân Moxon,  London |  Lea Schwab,  Aachen |  Colm O’Driscoll,  Dublin |  Anneliese Zausner-Mannes,  New York | 
Beyond equity: What does an anti-racist urban ecology look like?
Julian Agyeman,  Medford |  Isabelle Michele Sophie Anguelovski,  Barcelona |  Anna Livia Brand,  Berkeley |  Jean-Marie Cishahayo,  Ottawa |  CJ Goulding,  Teaneck |  Morgan Grove,  Baltimore |  Derek Hyra,  Washington |  Laura Landau,  New York |  María Mejía,  Bogotá |  Polly Moseley,  Liverpool |  Amanda Phillips de Lucas,  Baltimore |  Steward Pickett,  Poughkeepsie |  Charles Prempeh,  Accra |  Malini Ranganathan,  Washington |  Baixo Ribeiro,  São Paulo |  Amrita Sen,  Bangalore |  Suné Stassen,  Cape Town |  Abdallah Tawfic,  Cairo |  Cindy Thomashow,  Seattle |  Hita Unnikrishnan,  Sheffield |  Ebony Walden,  Richmond |  Ibrahim Wallee,  Accra |  Diana Wiesner,  Bogota | 
What actions are successful in activating cities to implement urban biodiversity conservation policies, campaigns, and projects?
Eric Butler,  Portland |  Georgina Cullman,  New York |  Eduardo Guerrero,  Bogotá |  Hayato Hasegawa,  Fukuoka |  Clara Holmes,  New York |  Mark Hostetler,  Gainesville |  Keitaro Ito,  Fukutsu City |  Mahito Kamada,  Tokushima |  Marit Larson,  New York |  Gilles Lecuir,  Paris |  Kevin Lunzalu,  Nairobi |  Colin Meurk,  Christchurch |  Matthew Morrow,  New York |  Siobhán McQuaid,  Dublin |  Tomomi Sudo,  Fukuoka |  Pamela Zevit,  Surrey | 

RECENT EXHIBITIONS

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The State We’re in Water: Constructing a Sense of Place in the Hydrosphere

An exhibition by Robin Lasser and Marguerite Perret Originally produced by Oklahoma State Museum of Art,adapted and digitally-curated for The Nature of Cities by the Forum for Radical Imagination on Environmental Cultures (FRIEC).   Introduction “…from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.” — Charles Darwin We human beings are...

Hidden Flows — photographers uncover the invisible flows in African cities

Introduction Welcome to our exhibition! It’s been a year in the making, and will keep evolving. We’d love to hear your thoughts: [email protected] The hidden flows exhibition emerged out of a need to enrich current conversations about resources, infrastructure and services in African cities. There is ongoing research, through the lens of urban metabolism, to measure and track how resources...

NYC Urban Field Station—Who Takes Care of New York?

Welcome! This interactive exhibition–originally mounted at the Queens Museum in 2019–highlights the stories, geographies, and impacts of diverse civic stewards across New York through art, maps, and storytelling. This is the Gallery Space’s “front door” and we are asking for a voluntary donation to support this exhibit—a tip jar, or pay-what-you-will ticket. During COVID-19, The Urban Ecological Arts Forum at...

Emilio Fantin—Dreams of Trees

Welcome to an exhibition and workshop that asks: how do we re-member what once rooted us in our own being and in the mutual being of the world around us? Fantin helps highlight a universal consciousness, and a relationship that affects not only the human being but all animated and non-animated things. This is the Gallery Space’s “front door” and...

EVENTS

TNOC Festival

TNOC Festival pushed boundaries to radically imagine our cities for the future. A virtual festival that covered 5 days with programming across all regional time zones and provided in multiple languages.

TNOC Festival Plenaries

TNOC Festival featured 18 plenaries, each with keynotes, panel dialogues, and art interventions. You can see them all here, both as complete plenary videos or segments.

TNOC Summit Outputs

This is a page for emerging outputs from The Nature of Cities Summit, in Paris 4-7 June 2019. New essays and roundtable appear here periodically, so keep checking back.

Conversations

TNOC operates three webinar series: Adventures in Collaboration, Stories of the Nature of Cities 1/2 Hour, and THE LEAF: Show and Tells from the Urban Arts Collective. After the scheduled live webinar, a recording will be made available to view.

PROJECTS

Fiction

We asked people to imagine future cities, in the form of a flash or short fiction. Our original prompt read like this: What are the stories of people and nature in cities in 2099? The result was a bopok of 57 stories from 23 countries.

Poetry

With SPROUT, we are curating a space for trans- and multi-disciplinary collaborations between poets, researchers, and citizens with a focus on geographical diversity, polyvocality, and translation. We are a creative project of The Nature of Cities, specifically interested in the character of green cities from many ways of knowing.

La Nature Des Villes

La Nature des Villes est un projet réalisé par The Nature of Cities. Cette une espace en ligne dédiée à la facilitation de la collaboration, en français, pour créer les villes qui soient meilleures pour la nature et tous les citoyens urbains. Nous existons à promouvoir les idées et les rassemblements multidisciplinaires entre divers acteurs urbains au monde francophone.

Food Water Energy

The IFWEN project stands for: Understanding Innovative Initiatives for Governing Food, Water and Energy Nexus in Cities. IFWEN is a Belmont Forum funded international team of researchers and stakeholders working to advance knowledge about urban governance related to FWEN, and Green and Blue Infrastructure (GBI) as its base.

MORE ESSAYS IN...

SCIENCE &
TOOLS

Common Trends and Conundrums in Nature-Based Solutions: Greening at the Intersection of Urban Densification and Urban Sprawl
Filka Sekulova,  Barcelona
Isabelle Michele Sophie Anguelovski,  Barcelona
Francesc Baro,  Barcelona
Bernadett Kiss,  Lund

Traditional chinampa cultivation as a way to restore water-stressed ecosystem services in Mexico City’s artificial wetland areas conquered from the sea in Tianjin Harbour … a network of bug-friendly bushes and patches of green along cycling...

PEOPLE &
COMMUNITITES

A Sense of Wonder: The Missing Ingredient to a Long-Term Value for Nature?
Bronwyn Cumbo,  Sydney
Marthe Derkzen,  Arnhem/Nijmegen

“For the child….it is not half as important to know as to feel. If facts are the seeds that later produce knowledge and wisdom, then the emotions and the impressions of the senses are the fertile soil in which the seeds must grow.” —Rachel Carson, 1965, p.58. The natural world is essential to human survival providing food, filtering water, and...

PLACE &
DESIGN

THIRD LANDSCAPE, Part 1: For the Design of an Amazon Forest City
Anna Dietzsch,  São Paulo

1 Proposition The logic of urban growth in the Brazilian Amazon could be changed if we succeeded in bringing together two different systems of thought and practices: that of the natural and indigenous, to that of technology and capital production. Together, they could guarantee the continued economic and environmental resilience of the region and pave the way to interesting hybrid...

ART &
AWARENESS

What Can We Learn from Chinese Classical Gardens?
David Goode,  Bath

Step off the street in Suzhou through a small door and you leave behind the bustling cacophony of a modern Chinese city to enter a different world of tranquility and calm, where natural features create a sense of being surrounded by nature in a tiny oasis that is a scholar’s garden. Nine of these gardens in Suzhou have been given...