2.5 billion more people will be living in cities by 2050. Nearly 90 per cent of this growth will take place in Asia and Africa. China alone will be home to nearly one billion urban residents by 2030. India is not far behind: but nearly 80 per cent of the urban infrastructure that will exist in 2050 has yet to be built. The decisions we take in the next decades will affect humankind for generations to come.
The Urban Age project has investigated these changes for over a decade, culminating in a new book, Shaping Cities in an Urban Age, edited by Ricky Burdett and Philipp Rode. The book is the third and final instalment in the ground breaking ‘Endless Cities’ series published by Phaidon.
Featuring 37 essays by leading policy makers, practitioners and scholars, Shaping Cities in an Urban Age, brings together authoritative research and fresh insights that explain the complexities of urbanisation. The book offers new perspectives on the dynamics of urban change and identifies and argues powerfully for a more integrated social, environmental and spatial approach that can inform and inspire the city makers who are shaping an increasingly urban world. It tracks how cities such as Addis Ababa, London and Delhi have transformed since 1990 and compares patterns of growth, inequality and energy consumption of other global locations, including New York, Hong Kong and Rio de Janeiro.
This event celebrated the global launch of Shaping Cities in an Urban Age, and included a panel with prominent authors featured in the publication. Drawing on a range of contemporary urban experiences, the panel explored current trends that are making cities more fragmented, less equitable and environmentally more damaging. This session extended to discuss how cities play a critical role in addressing these challenges and harnessing opportunities in an increasingly urban world.