Many voices. Greener cities. Better cities.

TNOC’s Mission

We believe the route to cities that are better for both people and nature is through transdisciplinary dialogue and collaboration. The mission of The Nature of Cities is to curate joined conversations about urbanism across ways of knowing and modes of action. We create transdisciplinary, publicly available, and widely disseminated programs, events, knowledge, and engagements for green city making. We strive for cities worldwide that are resilient, sustainable, livable, and just.




A picture of a dead black butterfly surrounded by yellowed leaves on concrete
Sistine Blue
Andreas Weber,  Berlin

[*]I’m on my way home from an errand one early June evening. As I walk, I look down on the granite-slabbed sidewalk. At its margin, a row of slender catsears raise their yellow heads towards the fading sky. They look a bit like skinny dandelions (who they are related to), as though they were a dried-out version of their juicy...

A picture of a fenced walkways along a lakeside
The City: Binding an Unbound Space
Arvind Lakshmisha,  Bangalore
Harini Nagendra,  Bangalore

“…they do not belong to our neighbourhood and are located outside the administrative jurisdiction of Bangalore; hence we do not work on those lakes…” This was the comment made by a representative belonging to a prominent lake conservation group in the city, presenting a focused definition of a city as a territorially bound space, limited to its administrative (municipal) boundaries....

Story. Telling. If you had a project from science or practice and wanted to make it a better story — one that could reach into new audiences — what would you do?
Pippin Anderson,  Cape Town |  Lindsay Campbell,  New York |  Marcus Collier,  Dublin |  Paul Currie,  Cape Town |  Bram Gunther,  New York |  Madhusudan Katti,  Raleigh |  Claudia Misteli,  Barcelona |  Steward Pickett,  Poughkeepsie |  Ania Upstill,  New York |  Stéphane Verlet-Bottéro,  Paris |  Ibrahim Wallee,  Accra |  Skylar R. Bayer,  Anchorage |  Priya Shukla,  Davis |  Bethann Garramon Merkle,  Laramie |  Evelyn Valdez-Ward,  Kingston |  Nic Bennett,  Austin |  Tim Lüschen,  Berlin |  Daniela Rizzi,  Freiburg |  Alice Reil,  Munich |  Sarah Ema Friedland,  New York City |  Paul Mahony,  Manchester |  Tommy Cheemou Yang,  New York City |  David Bunn,  Vancouver | 


The Distance Between
Dreams and Reality
is Action

In 2024 we focus on translating knowledge to results. Join us.



Carmen Bouyer — Les savoirs vivent dans la terre // Knowledge is in the land

Nous vous invitons à embarquer pour un voyage artistique qui connecte l’urbain et le rural dans un désir de créer des formes artistiques qui nous relient à la nature locale // Join us on this artistic journey between urban and rural, featuring art and actions that connect us with the larger landscape to which our cities belong. LES SAVOIRS VIVENT...


We asked people to imagine future cities, in the form of a flash or very short fiction. The series now includes two volumes: the latest is titled CITY IN A WILD GARDEN, a collection of 49 stories from 21 countries.


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.

The Just City Essays: 26 Visions for Urban Equity, Inclusion, and Opportunity

Today’s headlines—from Ferguson to Baltimore, Paris to Johannesburg—resound with the need for a frank conversation about the structures and processes that affect the quality of life and livelihoods of urban residents. Issues of equity, inclusion, race, participation, access and ownership remain unresolved in many communities around the world,  even as we begin to address the challenges of affordability, climate change adaptation and resilience.