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    Archive for the 'Built Environment' Category

    UCL Communication and Culture Awards 2015

    By Siobhan Pipa, on 13 May 2015

    Last Thursday saw staff from across UCL gather together to await one of the most hotly anticipated announcements of the year. No not the General Election results – I am, of course, referring to the winners of this year’s UCL Communication and Culture Awards.

    Professor Michael Arthur

    Professor Michael Arthur

    Organised by UCL Public & Cultural Engagement and UCL Communications & Marketing, the awards, now in their second year, recognise the fantastic work done throughout the UCL community in spreading awareness of research and teaching through the media and cultural platforms.

    This can include working on television, radio, blogging, festivals, public events, arts projects and exhibitions.


    Making Greater London the first National Park City

    By Guest Blogger, on 5 March 2015


     Written by Hannah Sender, Research Assistant, UCL Institute for Global Prosperity

    Last week, the UCL Institute for Global Prosperity teamed up with the campaigners behind the Greater London National Park* to drive a debate on London’s green spaces and green infrastructure at a conference in the Southbank Centre.

    The Reimagine London conference saw academics, practitioners and politicians come together to argue their case for what a new National Park City could achieve for the natural and cultural heritage of London.

    What is a National Park City?

    London's Battersea Park

    London’s Battersea Park (credit: Tim on Flickr)

    The idea of making London the first National Park City has gathered momentum since it was first conceived by National Geographic explorer and geography teacher Daniel Raven-Ellison last year. Daniel’s vision features London as a biodiverse landscape boasting enough substantial natural resources and cultural capital to be worthy of a new title: a National Park City.

    Daniel proposes that, since we already have the natural capital, Londoners could take the principles of National Parks – to “conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area” and “promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the special qualities of the park by the public’ – and apply them to their city.


    Prosperity in a rapidly urbanising world: where do we go from here?

    By Guest Blogger, on 22 January 2015


    Written by Hannah Sender, Research Assistant, UCL Institute for Global Prosperity

    Brasilia, Brazil

    Credit: Scott Wallace, World Bank.

    Is urbanisation even an issue?

    It is a widely-known and oft-cited fact that, as of 2007, more than 50% of the world’s population live in urban areas. The factors for this rapid change are hugely debated: are we realising a teleological Modernist project, or do we make decisions regarding where we live based purely on income? It is the case, however, that most of us experience the consequences of this development every day.

    In recognition of these problems, the urban ecology is now foremost in academia’s agenda: one of the four UCL Grand Challenges is ‘Sustainable Cities’. The recently launched UCL Institute for Global Prosperity has taken the issue of urbanisation as a primary focus for some of its nascent projects.

    As part of the Institute for Global Prosperity’s Soundbites series – a series of short lectures and conversations held at lunchtimes on questions around wellbeing and prosperity – Professor Julio D. Dávila, Director of the UCL Bartlett Development Planning Unit, gave a public talk last Thursday on the possibility for prosperity in rapidly urbanising contexts.


    Rethinking the city

    By Guest Blogger, on 3 December 2014

    pencil-iconWritten by Jasmine Popper (MA student, UCL Anthropology)

    Cities Methodologies exhibition

    Shown in the appropriate setting of the expansive Slade Research Centre, the eighth edition of Cities Methodologies questioned how we design, navigate and imagine cities as places. The exhibition and event series, organised by the UCL Urban Laboratory, represented an overall sense of investigation into what constitutes the lived experience, and the social and political construction of urban environments.

    After a call for proposals, a number of artists, academics, researchers and students from across the world working on urban topics showcased their research at UCL. Of these, a number of contributors unraveled day-to-day urban narratives and political issues as lived at a ground level.

    As soon as I entered the fifth floor (where the exhibition took place), I was transported back outside by an atmospheric soundscape of road sweeping and birdsong. It was part of Cally Calls, a project in which seven artists collaborated with seven local inhabitants of the Caledonian Road area in north London.