Many voices. Greener cities. Better cities.

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ESSAY
CROSSTALK

Building Practitioner Networks to Better Support Kenyan Frontline Workers During the COVID-19 Crisis: Some Learnings and Reflections
Shillah Mwaniga,  Nairobi
Gitonga Isaiah,  Maynooth
Manasi Kumar,  Nairobi

As the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates and the prevalence escalates, global health care systems become overwhelmed with patients who are either confirmed or suspected to be suffering from the disease (Chen et al., 2020). Frontline health care workers (HCWs) are required to work for long and irregular hours, with heavy workloads that contribute to increased levels of stress and ultimately precipitate...

ESSAY
CROSSTALK

Antiracist Environmental Leadership in a Virtual World
Cindy Thomashow,  Seattle

Our graduate students are figuring out how to best “immerse” themselves in city spaces while staying safe during the pandemic. Students find creative ways to both learn and practice while masked and distanced from community members. A positive outcome of being online is the ability to invite environmental activists and social justice leaders from BIPOC-led organizations into our Zoom classes...

GLOBAL
ROUNDTABLE

We Need an Ethical Code for Water
Gloria Aponte,  Medellín |  Katherine Berthon,  Melbourne |  Carmen Bouyer,  Paris |  Paul Currie,  Cape Town |  PK Das,  Mumbai |  Meredith Dobbie,  Victoria |  Casey Furlong,  Melbourne |  Andrew Grant,  Bath |  Gary Grant,  London |  Juliana Landolfi de Carvalho,  Curitiba |  Tom Liptan,  Portland |  Sareh Moosavi,  Brussels |  Harini Nagendra,  Bangalore |  Diane Pataki,  Salt Lake City |  André Stephan,  Brussels |  Peter Schoonmaker,  Portland |  Naomi Tsur,  Jerusalem |  Mario Yanez,  Lisbon | 

CONVERSE
RESPOND

The LEAF: Episode 4. Show and Tells from Urban Arts Collective Members
Bibi Calderaro, New York
Nicolas Dumit Estévez Raful Espejo, New York
Ursula Heise, Los Angeles

Explore with us diverse and connecting threads in urban ecological arts. In the LEAF, three FRIEC Urban Arts Collective members share something from their ideas and work for 10 minutes each, followed by Q&A. Theme: Stories that have not been told. Presenters: Bibi Calderaro, New York Nicolás Dumit Estévez Raful Espejo, New York Ursula Heise, Los Angeles Wednesday 20 January,...

RECENT ESSAYS...

On Privilege as Choice
Hita Unnikrishnan, Sheffield

Two incidents stand out particularly from my memories as a young child. In the first one, I was perhaps 5 or 6 years old—at that age when we ran out of the housing colony and into the streets to play a game of hopscotch or whatever else took our fancy. I remember playing with a child my age when another...

What is One Tree Worth?
Carly Ziter, Montreal

Writing this during National Forest Week here in Canada, I’m reflecting (as I frequently do) on the urban forest. As a scientist, I often find myself collapsing the beautiful, multidimensional, urban forest into a few general measurements: stand density, canopy cover, biomass, etc. But as an urban resident, I cherish these trees as individuals, too. Not long ago, I wrote...

Quarantine Fatigue and the Power of Activating Public Lands as Social Infrastructure
Lindsay Campbell, New York
Erika Svendsen, New York
Laura Landau, New York
Michelle Johnson, New York City
Sophie Plitt, New York

This essay is part three in a series. Since 13 March 2020, our team of social science researchers has been keeping a collective journal of our experiences of our New York City neighborhoods and public spaces during COVID-19. Read the essays from spring and summer here. 1. Winter is coming: Second wave and quarantine fatigue In New York City, after...

The Hills Save Us
Diana Wiesner, Bogota

En español. Citizenship is derived from city, and floristry from forest or jungle. Forest and human being live a socio-ecological pact in which the forest becomes a new citizen respected in its integrity, stability, and extraordinary beauty. Both benefits, as the utilitarian logic of exploitation is abandoned and the logic of mutuality is assumed, which implies mutual respect and synergy....

RECENT ROUNDTABLES...

What’s Next? Learning From Nature During Lockdown
Elmaz Abinader,  Oakland |  Jane Ingram Allen,  Santa Rosa |  Carmen Bouyer,  Paris |  Anne Brochot,  Voulx |  Joyce Garvey,  Dublin |  Leslie Gauthier,  New York |  Frances Mezzetti,  Dublin |  Munira Naqui,  Portland | 
How is COVID-19 affecting caring for and researching urban ecology?
Christina Breed,  Pretoria |  Mark Champion,  Wigan |  Joy Clancy,  Twente |  Ian Douglas,  Manchester |  Pete Frost,  Cardiff |  Lincoln Garland,  Bath |  David Haley,  Ulverston |  Jane Houghton,  York |  Yun Hye HWANG,  Singapore |  Christian Isendahl,  Gothenburg |  Philip James,  Salford |  Sarah Lindley,  Manchester |  Patrick M. Lydon,  Osaka |  Nancy McIntyre,  Lubbock |  Camilo Ordóñez,  Melbourne |  Stephan Pauleit,  Munich |  Joe Ravetz,  Manchester |  Graham Rook,  London |  Richard Salisbury,  Manchester |  Alan Scott,  London |  Richard Scott,  Liverpool |  Monica Smith,  Los Angeles |  Marcelo Lopes de Souza,  Rio de Janeiro |  Miriam Stark,  Honolulu |  Katalin Szlavecz,  Baltimore |  Joanne Tippett,  Manchester |  Piotr Tryjanowski,  Poznan |  Tim Webb,  London |  Mike Wells,  Bath |  Phil Wheater,  Manchester | 
What is the status and outlook for forested natural areas in your city? What actions are needed to help them thrive?
Novem Auyeung,  New York |  Weston Brinkley,  Seattle |  Sarah Charlop-Powers,  New York |  Lisa Ciecko,  Seattle |  James Duncan,  Miami |  Matthew Freer,  Chicago |  Keith Mars,  Austin |  Joseph McCarthy,  Chicago |  Karen Miller,  Chicago |  Sophie Plitt,  New York |  Clara Pregitzer,  New York |  Lydia Scott,  Chicago |  Michael Yadrick,  Seattle | 
Covid has upended all the normal routines in our lives and work. How do you imagine you might be changed by it, both professionally, but also personally as you negotiate a new post-virus “normal”?
Pippin Anderson,  Cape Town |  Isabelle Michele Sophie Anguelovski,  Barcelona |  Janice Astbury,  Buenos Aires |  Lindsay Campbell,  New York |  Sarah Charlop-Powers,  New York |  Katrine Claassens,  Montreal |  M'Lisa Colbert,  Montreal |  Carmen Bouyer,  Paris |  Marcus Collier,  Dublin |  Paul Currie,  Cape Town |  Samarth Das,  Mumbai |  Gillian Dick,  Glasgow |  Paul Downton,  Melbourne |  Emilio Fantin,  Milan |  Todd Forest,  New York |  Andrew Grant,  Bath |  Eduardo Guerrero,  Bogotá |  Bram Gunther,  New York |  Dagmar Haase,  Berlin |  Annegret Haase,  Leipzig |  Fadi Hamdan,  Beirut |  Cecilia Herzog,  Rio de Janeiro |  Alex Herzog,  Rio de Janeiro |  Matthew Jensen,  New York |  Panagiota Kotsila,  Barcelona |  Gilles Lecuir,  Paris |  Nina-Marie Lister,  Toronto |  Kevin Lunzalu,  Nairobi |  Patrick M. Lydon,  Osaka |  Yvonne Lynch,  Riyadh |  David Maddox,  New York  |  Antonia Machado,  Portland |  Francois Mancebo,  Paris |  Rob McDonald,  Washington, DC |  Brian McGrath,  New York City |  Siobhán McQuaid,  Dublin |  Ragene Palma,  London |  Diane Pataki,  Salt Lake City |  Mitchell Pavao-Zuckerman,  College Park |  Steward Pickett,  Poughkeepsie |  Mary Rowe,  Toronto |  Andrew Rudd,  New York City |  Eric Sanderson,  New York |  Olivier Scheffer,  Bordeaux |  Huda Shaka,  Dubai |  Laura Shillington,  Montreal |  Elisa Silva,  Caracas |  David Simon,  London |  Mary Hall Surface,  Washington |  Erika Svendsen,  New York |  Abdallah Tawfic,  Cairo |  Christine Thuring,  Vancouver |  Naomi Tsur,  Jerusalem |  Stéphane Verlet-Bottéro,  Paris |  Andreas Weber,  Berlin |  Diana Wiesner,  Bogota |  Darlene Wolnik,  New Orleans |  Xin Yu,  Shenzhen |  Carly Ziter,  Montreal | 

MORE ESSAYS IN...

SCIENCE &
TOOLS

Dolphin as Metaphor for the Limits of Environmental Law
Rebecca Bratspies,  New York City

On January 25, 2013, a dolphin swam into Brooklyn, New York’s Gowanus Canal. Poor dolphin! Gowanus canal is a 1.8 mile long Superfund site—a toxic stew of pesticides, heavy metals and PCBs masquerading as “the waters...

PEOPLE &
COMMUNITITES

Stewarding Memories: Caring for People, Trees, and Land 
Lindsay Campbell,  New York
Erika Svendsen,  New York

“We will never forget.”  After September 11 (2001), this claim was made in countless political speeches, memorial eulogies, bumper stickers, carved stones, tattoos, and tee-shirts. But we do forget.  Time rolls on.  We age.  New people are born who have no lived experience of the tragic occurrences of that day.  So too, does the landscape change.  New buildings rise, trees...

PLACE &
DESIGN

How Tactical Urbanism “Adds Up”
Sarah Bradley,  Montreal

A review of Tactical Urbanism: Short-term Action for Long-term Change, by Anthony Garcia and Mike Lydon. 2015. ISBN 9781610915267. Island Press, Washington. 256 pages. Tactical Urbanism: it’s one of the buzz words in the emerging people-centred planning paradigm. If you do a Google News search of the term, you’ll find articles from all the news sites beloved by urbanists: Next City Daily,...

ART &
AWARENESS

The Revalorization of Urban Nature, for Good and Ill
Harini Nagendra,  Bangalore

An image of expanding cities is associated, in most people’s minds, with the shrinking and gradual disappearance of urban nature. Yet, as life in cities becomes increasingly stressful and challenging, a gradual revalorization of urban nature is taking place across the cities of the world. The importance of urban nature is begin redefined with new values: of recreation, relaxation and, ultimately,...