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Urban Planning and PhD Program Addresses ‘The Future City’ (5/5)

Published on May 5, 2016

A rendered view of a future city.
Image Credit: Courtesy Arup and John Robertson Architects

What kinds of cities shall we live in, and how can urban planners help make them a reality? What possible future scenarios lie ahead, and how will big data and new technologies affect science and decision-making in urban design?

The University of Washington Graduate School’s Interdisciplinary PhD Program in Urban Design and Planning’s annual symposium for 2016 will tackle such questions with panel discussions featuring faculty, industry professionals and a pair of well-known keynote speakers.

“The Future City: Emergence of a New Science” will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, May 5, at UW Intellectual House, wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ.

The symposium will comprise two sessions. Morning discussions will center on the causes of urban change and what drives innovation in the study of cities. The morning keynote speaker, Luis Bettencourt, is a theoretical physicist and professor at the Santa Fe Institute.

Students from various UW doctoral programs will feature research on urban issues in a poster session during lunch.

The afternoon session will explore possible futures and the implications of those scenarios on graduate education and the urban planning and design industry itself. The afternoon keynote address will be delivered by Carlo Ratti, an architect and engineer and director of the Senseable City Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

A poster session featuring work by College of Built Environments students and faculty and a reception will follow the symposium from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in the Gould Pavilion Gallery.

The symposium is sponsored by the urban design Ph.D. program, the College of Built Environments and Urban@UW.


To learn more, contact Marina Alberti, professor and director of the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program in Urban Design and Planning, at 206-616-8667 or If you were not able to attend but have any questions, let us know! (Originally published by UW Today & Peter Kelley)

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