Society

A large focus area that includes health, community, social equity, education, arts & culture, and homelessness.

Hungry for the Holidays: A Look at Urban Food Insecurity

During these holiday months, most of us are gathering with family and friends, feeling grateful for what we have (and/or letting our families drive us crazy), and eating a bounty of our favorite foods of the season between Thanksgiving, Friendsgivings, work parties,...

What Do We Need to Build Sustainable Cities?

Every so often, I find it important to reset and to re-envision what a successful future looks like. This article seeks to take a step back and revisit the fundamentals of what the building of a sustainable city requires. The footprint of cities is a heavy contributor...

Downtowns That Are Sustainable and Healthy

In a reversal from trends of the last century, U.S. central cities are now growing faster than their suburbs, according to the latest census data. Sure, suburbs are continuing to grow as well, but there is been a marked shift, from 2010-2013, as Baby Boomers and young...

Santiago, Chile: Ingredients for a Smart City

Santiago, Chile may very well be the smart city of the future. To start with, 40% of the country lives in Santiago, and 85% of the population lives in urban areas, thus modeling the urbanization trend predicted throughout the rest of the world. Though the country is...

Will Smart Cities be Gentrified Cities?

Can cities become victims of their own success as they enhance and prosper? The idea of dislocation and displacement from a community is contrary to the urban ethic, and yet this undercurrent is rising in the public discourse wherever revitalization is occurring....

Mapping a Community’s Key Assets — Its People

Entrepreneurs and product designers are universally taught to focus on the problem they’re trying to solve or user need they are addressing. They are trying to correct deficiencies and improve performance. Designers and leaders of tomorrow’s cities are trained to...

Financing Urban Innovation and the Rise of Social Impact Bonds

As local governments struggle to meet their budgets, they have been forced to cut social programs often because of reduced federal support. This bears several questions: Where will cities get the money to get smarter? How can a smart city also be good for its people?...

2013 Innovative City of the Year

What does it take to be crowned the “Innovative City of the Year”? An outdoor escalator system stretching 28 stories? A Barefoot Park featuring water and massaging stones set among bamboo groves? Or is it the tight social fabric needed to turn around a place once...
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