On 23-25 June, LSE Cities hosted the first international Theatrum Mundi and Global Street conference with support from NESTA. Theatrum Mundi, a new research initiative at the centre, brings together architects and town planners with performing and visual artists to re-imagine the public spaces of 21st-century cities – streets, squares, parks, places for culture. Over two days, some 40 artists, architects, academics, institutional leaders, curators, choreographers, urbanists and engineers began a rich and rigorous conversation at the intersection of urbanism, architecture and the performing, visual and material arts.
The conversations and debates from the weekend will soon be available in a ‘Conference Report’, to be launched with a new website in a matter of weeks. The new website will be the core organising space of the on-going work of Theatrum Mundi in New York, London, Frankfurt, and other cities around the world. It will document our conversations, workshops and seminars, and begin to make public a methodology of exchange, and the results of those encounters.
On 20 June, LSE Cities and ICLEI launched a key report at the ICLEI-led City Roundtable at the Rio+20 Global Town Hall. The report represents the preliminary findings of a new global survey on the state of green policies in cities. ‘Going Green: How cities are leading the next economy’, shows widespread optimism at a local level concerning green economic development despite the global recession, and demonstrates the extent to which cities have successfully integrated green policies since the last United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in 1992. LSE Cities’ Executive Director, Philipp Rode said: “It is inspiring to see that the vast majority of cities in our survey have not only developed pro-active green policy over the last decades, but also that today they are in such profound agreement about the related economic benefits.” Watch Philipp Rode’s presentation of the key findings.
LSE Cities’ Director, Professor Ricky Burdett, spoke at the Summer term instalment of the LSE’s Alumni Lecture Series. The talk, London 2012: The Regeneration Opportunity, was chaired by Kurt Barling of BBC London, and also featured contribitions from Gordon Innes, Chief Executive Officer, London & Partners and Tony Travers, Director, LSE London.
Much has been said about the unique regeneration opportunity offered by the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and the aim to leave a substantial legacy of lasting benefit to London and Londoners. While the Games offer a foundation for the development of areas such as the Lower Lea Valley, Stratford and East London, this panel discussion considered the regeneration impact of the Games on London as a whole, and the wider economy.