#Spacematters – List of planning-related blogs v. 1.0

“It doesn’t matter what country or what political system you are from. Space brings you together”

Valentina Tereshkova, retired Russian cosmonaut, engineer and politician; first woman to have been in space (1963).

As the YA AESOP blog will be entering its fifth year of activity in March 2018, I found it fitting to start a list of planning-related blogs available on the big wide webosphere. Planning blogs are by nature interdisciplinary, so I have chosen to sort them by their main geographical area of focus. The “Global/International” heading is resolutely international in outlook. Some blogs are more heavily grounded in academic research, while others lean more toward industry and practice. Some are in other languages. Do ask Google for a decent translation if needed.

Here is a very selective selection, version 1.0.

Global / International

CityTalk is the blog of the global network Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI). As national politics are susceptible to change with every new mandate, the ICLEI functions as a valuable network for sharing initiatives and commitments with regards to sustainable development and climate change, including in following up on the Paris Agreement, and the COP23. The current president of the Global Executive Committee of ICLEI is Won-soon Park, Mayor of Seoul since 2011.

Cooperative City, the “magazine for urban partnerships”, features regular, engaging articles about a very wide range of topics, including participatory planning, bottom-up and grassroots planning and urban design, crowdfunding, alternative use of public space, and creativity. Its main themes are: culture, governance, environment, economy and community. It focuses on a selection of major European cities, including Paris, Rome, Berlin, and Lisbon, amongst others. They also publish books, check out for example their recent Funding the Cooperative City: Community Finance and the Economy of Civic Spaces, available upon request under Creative Commons license. Somewhat unusual, they also welcome articles from the wider blogosphere.

The Urban Affairs Forum “is a space for leading thinkers about urban issues to share their research, ideas, and experiences”, delving into all things local, regional, and urban policy-related, focusing mostly on North America but not only. The Forum is the more outwardly digital face of the peer-reviewed journal Urban Affairs Review. Eminently research-based, the Forum is quite serious about the implications of all kinds of political decisions and policy orientations for urban planning.

The Urban Resilience research Network is all about urban resilience, grounded in research, featuring article contributions from leading academic experts and young researchers alike. Co-founded by Lorenzo Chelleri and three other PhD students in 2011, the network got a brand new website in 2016. Alongside its bi-monthly articles, the website hosts a compilation of research literature covering just about any aspect of urban resilience, from climate change adaptation and resilience theory to urban design and regional economics.

The Funambulist is a blog about the ways in which architecture and spatial planning embody or mediate power, and how this plays out in terms of segregation, politics, gender, cultural identity, and environmental health. Its posts address post-colonial contexts quite extensively, as well as places of enduring or latent conflict. The blog was founded in 2010 by Paris- and New York-based architect Léopold Lambert. It is also a printed and online magazine, as well as a podcast. The content is very international, with articles and blog posts exploring diverse topics and case studies in depth.

The construction, design and planning firm ARUP has a blog (or “thought leadership platform”) called “Thoughts”: a series of contributions made by experts in different fields related to urban planning, engineering, construction management and everything in between. The contributions seem to have stopped in May 2017, but do check out the very large number of contributions made until then. Topics range from planning for migration, age diversity, building design, resilience and smart cities to technology and green space.

Atkins’ Angles is a blog similar to ARUP’s except seemingly leaning more strongly on the engineering, technology and the economic side of things. More posts about data, tech and engineering solutions, as well as organisational trends. Blogs cannot be pigeonholed easily, however, so well worth a look as well for a wide range of perspectives and experiences relevant to spatial planning and the built environment professions.

The Netherlands

There seems to be quite a few good industry-based blogs in the Netherlands. Here are a couple. Excuse my Dutch while Google translates them.

Ruimtemeesters (the “Space Masters”) has a blog/news feed covering all sorts of issues with spatial consequences nationally or locally, for example contributions on the need to “futureproof” the competencies of almost half of Dutch government officials, or on the topicality of fighting drugs.

Ruimtevolk (the “Space People”). Alongside their rich, regular, and wide-ranging blog posts, they also run the brand new NL magazine. Well-worth reading.

Over Morgen (“The Day After Tomorrow” – not to be confused with the global warming disaster blockbuster movie), features regular articles on a wide range of topics connected to spatial planning, especially the energy transition in the Netherlands.


Two very interesting city-based blogs are well-worth noting, as well as a consultancy-based blog.

The Gentcement portal deals with every possible trend and evolution in architecture and planning in the city of Ghent. Themes include: New construction, Public space, Restoration and renovation, infrastructure, and urbanism, and posts can also be classified by construction material, from brick to glass.

BrusselBlogt covers arts, culture, planning, food, social entreprise, and social analysis in the Belgian capital. It also boasts a very impressive list of Brussels-based blogs in Flemish, English and French, some of which are no longer updated.

Brussels-based Citizenlab provides digital engagement platform to local government, and runs a blog in English that is strong on related themes, especially public participation in spatial planning and how to make technology work for government. Check out for example five innovative frameworks to assess e-participation, or a blog showcasing their successful public engagement campaign in the city of Liège.


Picture credit: Astronaut, by nicolgaravello on flickr, Non-Commerical CC Attribution


La Fabrique de la Cité (the City Factory in the English version of the website) is a think tank launched by the Vinci construction, infrastructure and facilities management giant. The Observatory tab features short, concise posts on a wide range of topics. Not very comprehensive, but a good repository of topical research and news reports. For example: check out the output of the transnational and interdisciplinary project European Cities and Refugees: a Laboratory for Affordable Housing and Urban Resilience to Future Crises, which assesses solutions developed in Berlin, Hamburg, Stockholm Stuttgart, Munich, and Dresden, with a view to help other cities faced with similar issues.

Another industry blog, Demain la Ville (which can be loosely translated as the “city of tomorrow”) is run by the real estate company Bouygues Immobilier, part of the Bouygues giant. Although probably partisan, the blog has for motto: “Let’s build tomorrow’s city together”. Its posts cover unusually progressive themes for a giant construction/real estate company, such as tactical urbanism and the role of crafts for urban sustainability.

The Funambulist (see above) has many posts about France, focusing particularly on social and environmental injustice. Check out for example this post about the social construction of “no-go zones” in the French capital.

La Gazette des Communes is the one-stop information point for local and regional government officials and anyone interested in French local affairs. Many diverse issues concern spatial planning either directly or indirectly, from education, safe cycling and third sector activity to extremism and regeneration, and all seem well-covered. Annual subscription is a bit steep though (223 euros).


Eddyburg takes the big picture on politics, planning, urban design, heritage, and glocal social and economic trends. The left-leaning posts are guided by three main, overlapping perspectives: “Urbs” – (a walled city in Ancient Rome), “Civitas” (Community; citizenry; city-state), and “Polis” (Greek city-sate, characterised by a sense of community). International in perspective, it also analyses Italian politics in depth, and the spatial consequences thereof.


Hållbar Stad (”Sustainable City”) is ”a forum for disseminating knowledge and good examples”. Regular articles cover the state-of-the-art in urban design solutions and latest news affecting urban planning, in Sweden and beyond. Topics range from the UN Agenda 2030, urban ecosystem services and public transport to the growing power imbalances between cities and hinterlands.


The Planner is the magazine of the UK Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). An essential source of information for all matters related to spatial planning across the UK, covering all relevant policy evolutions. Unfortunately you have to be an RTPI member or subscribe to the website after your 60-day free trial… RTPI membership is free if you are a student on a RTPI accredited programme. If you are less lucky you can always become an affiliate member, for a (steep?) £90 a year if you live in the UK, or £60 if you don’t. Check out also their job listings.

Branding itself as “Independent intelligence for planning professionals”, Planning Resource seems perhaps bit more industry- and less government-minded than The Planner. The yearly subscription is definitely less affordable (£195), which will screen out the poorer among us, unless your company/institution has subscribed to it. Its coverage seems very up-to-date and comprehensive, also on all manners of policy and economic trends.


Not really a blog per say, Green Space Scotland is the one-stop news and resource repository for all things green space in the country of Scotland and beyond. The news feed provides a thorough update on all policies that affect green space, as well as new geographical and other related data, including Scotland’s greenspace map. It also hosts a repository of publications on such varied themes as health, placemaking and growing spaces, as well as regular surveys about the state, quality and use of green space.


The blog of the Irish Planning Institute, an equally comprehensive and broad-ranging coverage of everything that relates to spatial planning, with news, insights and resources for professional development. It also boasts a planning research portal with output from IPI accredited planning schools.


ACSP – The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning, is pretty much the equivalent of AESOP for North America. The ACSP Blog is rich with contributions from PhD analysis, with themes covering spatial analysis, zoning, housing policy, energy systems, etc., focusing mostly on the US. The blog seems relatively young however, the oldest post I could find was from November 2016.

The blog of the American Planning Association gives very comprehensive coverage of all trends in spatial planning in the US, from healthy planning and historic preservation (aka heritage) to planning theory and tax reform . The posts feature insightful case studies, which can be a source of inspiration or research material to practitioners and researchers alike. A very good complement to Planetizen.

Planetizen hardly needs an introduction. Very US-centred, it covers just about topics of direct relevance to spatial planning. From DIY urbanism and urban design to finance and tech, it’s all covered by experts in the field. As an aside, Christmas wishes to Santa Claus for proper public transport are in there; have you remembered to make your own requests to St Nicholas on Dec 6th this year? Planetizen also features available job positions in government and industry, as well as a guide to higher education opportunities and lifelong training. Check out the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programmes.

Progressive City (:Radical Alternatives) “is an online publication dedicated to ideas and practices that advance racial, economic, and social justice in cities”. It is a project of the Planners Network, the US-based Organisation of Progressive Planning. The regular blog posts address inclusive urban planning practices, grassroots organising and civic action, with environmental justice very high on their agenda. They welcome contributions from activists, practitioners, academics and community members alike – that is, pretty much anyone with an interest and experience in anything civic or bottom-up.

Summing up: Space is the Common Denominator


Every blog is unique, which is what makes it so valuable. What brings them together, however, is an investigation of space. Space has always mattered, today just as yesterday, and it always will. Yet what matters even more than space itself, perhaps, is how we relate to it, both as individuals, communities and societies. As Greek philosopher Democritus provocatively put it: “Nothing exists except atoms and empty space; everything else is opinion”. Blog on!

Post-scriptum: Crowdsourcing the list – do help it to grow

This post is meant as a longer-term, crowdsourced post. Do share links to engaging blogs connected to spatial planning and related fields, either as comments below, or by email to blog@aesop-youngacademics.net. The next post will focus on blogs based at specific research institutes and departments, as well as the blogs of individual professionals and experts.

Special thanks to Simone Tulumello, Thomas Verbeek, and Chandrima Mukhopadhyay for sharing links to many of the blogs mentioned here.



Posted in Beyond planning, Dissemination, outreach, communication, Planning, city, and society, Resources, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Urban Heat Island for Beginners: Part 5 *


There are many socio-economic impacts related to the increase of urban temperature exacerbated by the increase in the global warming. The implications on the urban environment are mainly: local air quality, heat stress, morbidity, mortality, energy demand and effects on ecosystems. In climate science, local and global are strictly connected issues (Corburn, 2009). A mutual relationship between local and global scale exists. The control of global warming through international policy – such as the Kyoto Protocol – involves not only policy-makers but also local politics and planners who can play the key role in the enhancement of the local and global climate. The role of cities is also important in a global perspective, indeed cities are responsible of about 97% of the CO2 anthropogenic emissions (Svirejeva-Hopkins, Schellnhuber, & Pomaz, 2004), but at local scale the effects of urbanization can give rise to an increase of temperature variable in time and space that on average is of about 1-3°C and in more extreme conditions urban contexts are warmer than the rural surroundings of 10°C (Grimmond, 2007).

The increase in urban temperature affects primarily human heath, especially during summer, increasing the heat strokes and decreasing the air quality for the formation of photochemical ozone. About 1000 people die every year in the United States for extreme temperatures (Changnon, Kunkel, & Reinke, 1996). The UHI influences the heat waves exacerbating their magnitude and duration. In addition, also the secondary effects such as the increase in ground-ozone and pollutants affects human health generating mainly respiratory diseases. In this last case, children and old people are exposed at particular risks (EPA, 2009).

The local warming causes the increase in the use of energy for cooling and a reduction during winter for heating. Previous studies demonstrate the effects of the increase in the urban temperature on the use of energy. For example the Heat Island Group has estimated an increase of the use of energy in Los Angeles correspondent to 100 million of US dollars (Chang, 2000). Besides, Sailor shows that for each degree of temperature above 27°C in New Orleans there is an increase of energy use of about 37 kWh (Sailor, 2002). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests that in the US cities, the increase in the peak of urban electric demand increases 1.5 to 2 percent for every 0.6°C increase in summertime temperature. This means that 5–10% of community-wide demand for electricity is necessary to compensate the heat island effect (EPA, 2009). Santamouris et al. (2001) found for the UHI in Athens a doubling of the energy use for cooling and the triple of the peak of energy use during the warmest days. The increase in the energy demand, especially in summer, causes the increase in the probability of blackouts provoking discomforts to the population and economic backlashes.

The augmentation in the energy demand produces an increase in primary pollutants and greenhouse gases associated with the energy production. The pollutants produced are mainly sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, particulate and carbon monoxide. These pollutants are harmful to the human health and contribute to the formation of the ozone and to the acid rains. Besides, the carbon dioxide affects mainly the global warming.

The increase in urban temperatures and in particular in urban surface ones provokes the increase in the temperature of storm-water runoff. The storm-water drains into storm sewers raising the temperature of rivers, ponds or lakes in which it is released. The increase in water temperature affects many aquatic species acting on their metabolism and their reproduction (EPA, 2009).

Mitigation Strategies

Since the UHI is caused by a modification in the natural heat balance at the surface, the mitigation strategies should modify or enhance the contribution of some of the factors in the equation 14 and equation 15. First of all it is possible to increase the amount of reflected radiation increasing the mean urban albedo and the emissivity in order to reduce the outgoing long-waves. Then, it is possible to enhance the latent heat flux converting residual urban spaces into gardens, lawns or planting trees (Shahmohamadi, Che-Ani, Ramly, Maulud, & Mohd-Nor, 2010; EPA, 2009) or increasing the water bodies (Akbari, 2009). Other strategies can be related to the modification of the urban morphology, such as the amelioration of the natural ventilation, even though that is difficult to realize when the urban pattern is already defined.

Future policies can attempt to design cities in which efforts can be conducted to decrease the UHI phenomenon and all its impact on the environment and population.

Nowadays, most of time is not easy to modify the urban morphology because not residual spaces are available to convert into green spaces. It is easier to replace dark surfaces with high-albedo ones.

Tree planting can positively affect the UHI in two different ways. Trees reduce urban surface temperature by their shades blocking the incoming radiation and reducing the incoming energy reaching the soil (Rosenfeld, et al., 1995). Moreover, trees can decrease the air temperature through evapo-transpiration (Akbari, 2009) producing the so-called ‘oasis phenomenon’ (Santamouris, 2006) and as a consequence the use of energy for cooling (Simpson & McPherson, 1998). Other benefits in terms of urban air quality connected to trees planting are the increase in the amount of pollutants uptake (Akbari, Pomerantz, & Taha, 2001; Cardelino & Chameides, 1990), reduction of noise (Akbari, Pomerantz, & Taha, 2001), beautification, increase in biodiversity. Moreover, trees planting has positive effects also on global warming decreasing the amount of carbon dioxide.

The role of green areas in the mitigation of the UHI, has been also investigated by Petralli et al. (2006), who analyzed temperatures in gardens and courtyards. The temperatures recorded in the two green spaces had the same trend, but different values. This behavior is justified by the two green spaces having the same thermal characteristics, but different geometric characters. The temperature in courtyards is influenced by the canyon effect, caused by the surrounding walls resulting in the rise of temperature. Small green areas such as courtyards and gardens contribute to the mitigation of the UHI. A difference of approximately 1.5°C between streets and gardens, and 1°C between streets and courtyards, was recorded in the early morning. Moreover, urban parks can contribute to provide thermal comfort to people.

Typically, urban environments are characterized by low albedo surfaces. The replacement of natural surfaces with concrete, asphalt and tar lessens the urban albedo producing a reduction of the reflected radiation and as a consequence an increase of the surface temperature (Akbari, 2009). The quantity of the reflected radiation depends on the optic characteristics of the materials but also on latitude. At low latitude, such as at the equator, the amount of the incoming radiation is consistently higher than radiation at high latitude (Oleson, Bonan, & Feddema, 2010). This means that high-albedo surfaces are more effective at low latitudes rather than at high one (Lenton & Vaughan, 2009). As well as vegetation, increase in surface albedo can have positive effects both on the small and medium-scale. A high-albedo surface reaches a lower temperature than a dark one, but the urban-wide conversion of urban surfaces can accrue several benefits (Rosenfeld, et al., 1995); not only the decrease in surface temperature but also the decrease in air temperature and as a consequence the reduction in energy use for cooling and the enhancement of the air quality. As it will be discussed later the increase in world-wide surface albedo has positive effects also on climate change (Akbari, Menon, & Rosenfeld, 2009; Menon, Akbari, Mahanama, Sednev, & Levinson, 2010). The main problem in big and densely urbanized cities is that is not easy to convert dark impervious surfaces into light green areas. One solution could be to convert traditional black flat roofs into green roofs. Indeed, since roofs represent about 20-25% of the urban surface (Akbari, Rose, & Taha, 2003), their urban-wide conversion into green roofs can give rise to many benefits both on an urban scale – effects on UHI, air quality, storm-water management, biodiversity and urban amenities (Oberndorfen, et al., 2007); and on a building scale – increase in life span of the building materials underneath the soil, reduction of noise, and decrease in building energy use especially during summer (Saiz, Kennedy, Brass, & Pressnail, 2006).


Akbari, H. (2009). Cooling our Communities. A Guidebook on Tree Planting and Light-Colored Surfacing. LBNL Paper LBL-31587.

Akbari, H., Menon, S., & Rosenfeld, A. (2009). Global cooling: increasing world-wide urban albedos to offset CO2. Climatic Change, 94, 275-286.

Akbari, H., Pomerantz, M., & Taha, H. (2001). Cool surfaces and shade trees to reduce energy use and improve air quality in urban areas. Solar Energy, 70 (3), 295-310.

Akbari, H., Rose, S. L., & Taha, H. (2003). Analyzing the land cover of an urban environment using high-resolution orthophotos. Landscape and Urban Planning, 63, 1-14.

Cardelino, C. A., & Chameides, W. L. (1990). Natural hydrocarbons, urbanization and urban ozone. Journal of Geophysical Research, 95 (13), 971-979.

Chang, S., (2000, June 23). Energy Use. Retrieved August 22, 2010, from Heat Island Group: http://eetd.lbl.gov/HeatIsland/EnergyUse/

Changnon, S. A., Kunkel, K. E., & Reinke, B. C. (1996). Impacts and responses to the 1995 heat wave: A call to action. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 77, 1497-1506.

Corburn, J. (2009). Cities, Climate Change and Urban Heat Island Mitigation: Localising Global Environmental Science. Urban Studies, 46 (2), 413-427.

EPA. (2009, February 10). Heat Island Impacts. Retrieved August 22, 2010, from Heat Island Effect: http://www.epa.gov/heatisld/impacts/index.htm#energy.

Grimmond, S. (2007). Urbanization and global environmental change: local effects of urban warming. The Royal Geographical Society, 83-88.

Lenton, T., & Vaughan, N. E. (2009). The radiative forcing potential of different climate geoengineering options. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 9, 5539-5561.

Menon, S., Akbari, H., Mahanama, S., Sednev, I., & Levinson, R. (2010). Radiative forcing and temperature response to changes in urban albedos and associated CO2 offsets. Environmental Research Letters, 5, 1-12.

Oberndorfen, E., Lundholm, J., Bass, B., Coffman, R. R., Doshi, H., Dunnett, N., et al. (2007). Green Roofs as Urban Ecosystems: Ecological Structures, Functions, and Services. BioScience, 57 (10), 823-833.

Oleson, K. W., Bonan, G. B., & Feddema, J. (2010). Effects of white roofs on urban temperature in a global climate model. Geophysical Research Letters, 37.

Petralli, M., Prokopp, A., Morabito, M., Bartolini, G., Torrigiani, T., & Orlandini, S. (2006). Role of green areas in urban heat island mitigation: a case of study in florence (Italy). Rivista Italiana di Agrometeorologia (1), 51-58.

Rosenfeld, A. H., Akbari, H., Bretz, S., Fishman, B. L., Kurn, D. M., Sailor, D., et al. (1995). Mitigation of urban heat islands: materials, utility programs, updates. Energy and Buildings (22), 255-265.

Saiz, S., Kennedy, C., Brass, B., & Pressnail, K. (2006). Comparative Life Cycle Assessment of Standard and Green Roof. Environmental Science and Technology, 40, 4312-4316.

Santamouris, M. (2006). Environmental design of urban buildings. An integrated approach. London: Earthscan.

Santamouris, M., Papanikolaou, N., Livada, I., Koronakis, I., Georgakis, C., A., A., et al. (2001). On the impact of urban climate on the energy consuption of buildings. Solar Energy, 70 (3), 201-216.

Shahmohamadi, P., Che-Ani, A. I., Ramly, A., Maulud, K. N., & Mohd-Nor, M. F. (2010). Reducing urban heat island effects: A systematic review to achieve energy consumption balance. International Journal of Physical Sciences, 5 (6), 626-636.

Simpson, J. R., & McPherson, E. G. (1998). Simulation of tree shade impactcs on residential energy use for space conditioning in Sacramento. Atmospheric Environment, 32 (1), 69-74.

Svirejeva-Hopkins, A., Schellnhuber, H. J., & Pomaz, V. L. (2004). Urbanised territories as a specific component of the Global Carbon Cycle. Ecological Modelling, 173, 295-312.


* Rearranged text from: Susca, T. (2011). Evaluation of the Surface Albedo in a LCA Multi-scale Approach. The Case Study of Green, White and Black Roofs in New York City. Ph.D. Thesis

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Farewell, and welcome: a new editor-in-chief for the YA blog

In early 2013, a freshman post-doc fellow, I was struggling around the idea of creating a research blog. At that time, not many blogs in the field of planning and urban studies existed, and while the Open Access movement was leading the rush toward different forms of sharing and disseminating knowledge, I was feeling the urge to contribute to those dynamics. I was in need of a ‘community’, possibly made up of folks in earlier stages of their career, willing to engage in such an endeavour; and struggling to find one. In the midst of the pressures and uncertainties of finalising PhDs and starting up academic careers, the feeling was strong among my peers that writing for blogs was something that takes time from those tasks – writing articles, above all – necessary to survive in contemporary academia.

When I went to Dublin for the 2013 AESOP congress, I had almost given up the idea of launching a blog, and thought to join existing ones, or simply write a post from time to time. I went to the Young Academics assembly without even thinking about the blog, I remember. But while I was feeling the particular energy that YA assemblies at AESOP congresses have, I realised that, possibly, THAT ONE was the community I was looking for. During the debate I suggested the YAs could use an improved online presence and dissemination strategy, maybe starting by a blog; and the YA Coordination Team asked me to put together a proposal.

At the end of the assembly, one of the members of the Coordination Team of the time whispered: ‘why don’t you enrol in the upcoming elections for the Coordination Team? You may work to update our overall communication strategy!’. By October of that year I was elected in the Coordination Team, and, thanks to the support of the rest of the team, we launched the blog a few months after, in March 2014, during the YA Conference in Gothenburg. It seems yesterday, but more than four years have passed by since I submitted the first proposal for the blog. In the meanwhile, the YA blog has become a solid point in the planning and urban studies blogosphere; and hopefully an important place for those who either wrote or collaborated to it.

That ‘community’ I was struggling to find in 2013 has been materialising around this webpage in the following years. A community whose diversity is partially evident in the page of the contributors past and present; and much more in the richness of ideas and topics that have been hitting the pages of the blog. Though numbers cannot express this richness, they still provide some context: some thirty persons have contributed as writers or editors; almost 140 posts have been published; and 30 thousands views are about to be hit, not considering those by the hundred followers who receive the posts on their email or reader. What is most important to me is that those views arrived from more than a hundred countries in all continents, virtually the entire planet.

If I look back at the dynamics of the blog, I can perfectly see how what needed be pushed at first, started walking its own path in time. For instance, the editorial board, from being entirely constituted by members of the YA Coordination Team (me and Nadia Caruso at first, Mohamed Saleh afterwards), was enriched by Lorenzo Chelleri. While at first getting people to contribute regularly was quite a job, one that did not leave much energy for other things, more recently this became incredibly smooth and the editorial board could start to focus on new ideas and projects – news I’m sure you’ll hear about soon. Indeed, this didn’t happen by chance and many things have changed. On the one hand, the YA network is bigger and stronger, with many new projects that extend well beyond the action of the Coordination Team – for instance, the journal plaNext and the calls for YA members to organise the yearly conferences. On the other hand, blogging is now considered a natural component of academic work, and blogs in planning and urban studies mushroomed.

In a new context, amid new challenges, it was time for a change: it was time for the YA blog to have a new leadership, hence new ideas to explore new spaces, potentialities and possibilities. Personally, I am not even sure whether I’m still a ‘young’ academic – precarious, for sure, but that’s another story (or not). For sure, it is time to provide fresh energies to leadership roles in the YA network.

If I may, things seem to be walking a good path. After an open call, the YA Coordination Team has appointed editor-in-chief Ian Babelon, who has been for a couple years an extraordinarily consistent and inspiring contributor to the blog. I am more than sure we’ll witness the blog growing, and changing, for good. Living something one imagined, created and pushed is easier if they see that something evolving naturally, almost organically. It is also a good lesson at humility: ‘hey, don’t think you’re that important, this thing can well do without you’. I am sure it will!

Truth be said, I am not ready to completely abandon the blog. I will drop a contribution from time to time and plan to keep updating the list of YA journals together with the editorial team. I am still part of the YA community, and plan to be for some time to come. It’s the best way I can try to give back some of the energy it has given to me.

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Urban Heat Island for Beginners: Part 4 *

Physics of the UHI Phenomenon

The energy balance ambient air-Earth surface is governed by energy gains, losses and storage and can be explained by the following relation:

Rn = [K↓ – K↑] – [L↓ – L↑]

Equation 1 Global energy balance

Rn is the net radiation reaching the surface; K↓ is the incoming short-waves depending on the geographical coordinates; K↑ is the outgoing short-waves depending on the surface albedo; L↓ incoming long-waves depending on the sky temperature; L↑ outgoing long-waves depending on the thermal properties of the surfaces reached.

Taking into account the correlation between the parameters in equation 1 and their dependence on other physical characteristics, the above equation can be also written in the following way:

Rn = (1-α) (K↓) + (L↓- ε σTs4)

Equation 2 Energy balance at the surface

Equation 2 explicates the dependence of the outgoing short-waves on the surface albedo (α) and the outgoing long-waves on the surface temperature (Ts) and the emissivity (ε) and σ that is the Stefan-Boltzmann constant.

The net radiation reaching the surface generates a heat gain (energy imbalance) that is transferred as follows:

Rn + A = λE + H + G + T +….

Equation 3 Energy balance

Where A is the anthropogenic heat; λE is latent heat; H is the sensible heat; G is the heat transferred to the substrate and T is the advective transport of heat. The latent heat is mainly due to the evapo-transpiration processes and it depends on the vegetation abundance in the detected area. The sensible heat depends on the thermal and optical characteristics of the surfaces; for example a high-reflectance surface is able to scatter solar radiation avoiding an extreme increase in the surface temperature. Other factors can be involved in equation 3 but usually are minor. G is mainly dependent on the thermal properties of the materials. A is referred to the human activities among the others, for example, road traffic, use of fuels and heat releases due to cooling system use in summer. In urban context equation 3 is mainly constituted by the sensible heat and the anthropogenic heat:

Rn + A = H

Equation 4 Energy equation in urban sites

Besides, for the rural areas, equation 4 becomes:

Rn + A = λE + H + G

Equation 5 Energy equation in rural sites

Equation 3 is an energy imbalance because not all the energy reaching the urban surfaces is re-radiated; but some of it is absorbed by the building materials and then transformed. That equation depends mainly by the characteristics of the building materials; in rural sites the amount of latent heat is consistently higher than that in an urban site. In an urban context because the surface albedo is lower than that in rural site, the surface temperature is higher. The surface temperature describes the urban heat island as a diurnal phenomenon connected to the solar radiation reaching the surfaces, but the stored heat is also released after the sunset. In this case the UHI can be detected and measured as a difference of air temperatures between an urban and a rural context. The heat released mainly depends on the thermal characteristics of the materials such as emissivity. While, the released heat dissipation depends on the canopy layer, in other words, on the local urban morphology and in particular on the strongly pronounced 3D structure (Santamouris, 2006).

UHI Seasonal and Diurnal/Nocturnal Behavior

UHI is characterized by significant spatial and also temporal variability. The greatest UHI is evident under conditions of clear sky and low wind speed, when the highest quantity of solar radiation is able to reach the urban surfaces and to heat them. Then, the low wind velocity – typical of the densely urbanized environments – decreases the amount of dissipated heat determining an accumulation of heat under steady-state conditions (Landsberg, 1981). The heat accumulated during the day is released after the sunset; the lower is the skin temperature the bigger is the amount of heat released. In particular in the two or three hours following the sunset the most quantity of heat is released by the building materials, determining the highest difference of temperature between the urban and rural sites. Moreover, the UHI can be observed both in summer and in winter, even if the impacts of the local warming during the summer are stronger than those during the winter (Santamouris, 2006).

UHI can produce secondary effects on local climate such as the increase in cloudiness and fog for the higher evaporation in correspondence of rain precipitation. The increase in cloudiness and air humidity gives rise to additional shower and thunderstorm (van Heerwaarden & Vilà-Guerau de Arellano, 2008).



Landsberg, H. E. (1981). The Urban Climate (Vol. 28). New York: International Geophysics Series

Santamouris, M. (2006). Environmental design of urban buildings. An integrated approach. London: Earthscan

van Heerwaarden, C. C., & Vilà-Guerau de Arellano, J. (2008). Relative humidity as an indicator for cloud formation over heterogeneous land surfaces. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 65, 3263-3277

* Rearranged text from: Susca, T. (2011). Evaluation of the Surface Albedo in a LCA Multi-scale Approach. The Case Study of Green, White and Black Roofs in New York City. Ph.D. Thesis

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In this blog I explore the value of minimalism for many aspects of our urban lives. I draw parallels between such varied phenomena as urban acupuncture, resource-optimised engineering, consumption practices, communication and personal philosophies.


Minimalism is most famous for its distinctive clean, simple, spacious and understated aesthetics. Minimalism has influenced creative design in general, from modern graphic design, communication, interior design, architecture, the visual arts, and even user interfaces. The Design Shack identifies five traits of successful minimalist design:

  • Depth within simplicity
  • Balance
  • Contrast
  • Unusual, eye-catching accents
  • Focused interactivity, rather than passive visuals

For web design, the Norman and Nielsen group emphasises, among other characteristics: a maximised use of empty space, limited colour palettes, hidden navigation panels, the use of grids and symmetry, and a dramatic use of catchy fonts.


Above: an example of minimalist aesthetics. “Moliner House” by the architectural practice Alberto Campo Baeza. Photo credit: Javier Ballejas on Flickr, Non-Commercial Creative Commons Attribution.

Here are some pictures of minimalist interior homes in Japan.

Individuals, philosophy and society

Beyond its cool, somewhat cold aesthetics, minimalism is also a philosophy, an invitation to reconsider what is really important in our lives. Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus describe minimalism as such:

Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.

Although minimalism is often portrayed as getting rid of all the superfluous, particularly belongings, it can aid one in all facets of life, from health and mindfulness to personal productivity and focus. It can help us make better sense of why we do the things we do, and what really matters in our lives. In terms of personal productivity, Cal Newport prescribes getting rid of all forms of possible distraction (from social media to multitasking) to achieve full, intensive periods of “deep work” and focus, akin to Mihaly Csikszentmihaly’s “flow” state.

Tokyo-based Fumio Sasaki dedicates his book “Goodbye Things” to minimalist living:

(Minimalism) is an attempt to reduce the things that aren’t essential so we can appreciate the things that really are precious to us… In today’s busy world, everything is so complicated that minimalism, which began with objects, is spreading to other areas as well.

Minimalist personal philosophies have been a reaction against “maximalism”, which can be translated as an over-consumption and accumulation of food, consumables, collectables, technological devices, which can be correlated with excessive waste, personal unsatisfaction, greed, addiction, poor health and restlessness, and thus with emotional, mental and physical suffering for oneself, society and the environment. Minimalism goes hand in hand with a concern for personal, collective and environmental health. This is exemplified in movements such as slow food, with its focus on small-scale agriculture, food quality, and culinary experiences; or mindfulness, which promotes self-awareness and a greater appreciation of the present moment. Overall, becoming aware and letting go of the clutter in one’s life can support forms of happiness that are based on immaterial values such as community, resilience and introspection, rather than always running after status or nurturing dependency.

Architecture, engineering and planning

Minimalist approaches have also been connected with modern (and even modernist) approaches to design (for good or bad). Quite famously, modernist architect Ludwig van der Rohe coined the phrase “Less is more”, which is widely applicable to all areas of personal and collective-organised life. For his part, Buckminster Fuller is famous for “doing more with less”, or “ephemeralisation”, thereby encouraging designers and engineers to use fewer resources to get things done. By optimising resource use, ephemeralisation is a way of reducing the ecological footprints of physical infrastructure works, industrial design and production processes. More broadly, “doing more with less” has been a prompt to use natural resources smartly so as to prevent over-consumption and waste.

Last but not least, minimalism itself can be said to have impacted urban design, planning and management. New Public Management, and more recently austerity, have aimed to do “more with less” public expenditure. In terms of prioritising urban intenventions, urban acupuncture, famously initiated by architect mayor Jaime Lerner in Curitiba, focuses on providing strategic funding to optimise returns on socio-economic investment. The plan is that by improving key nodes in the urban fabric, significant ripple effects can be triggered. Urban acupuncture made in Curitiba, however, has been criticised for lacking public engagement. Other Brazilian cities (e.g. Belo Horizonte) have used more participatory approaches such as participatory budgeting.

The urban design approaches of consultancies such as Gehl Architects and White Architects (among many others) seem to have been influenced by minimalism and a concern for resource efficiency. Compare for example the latter’s Zen-inspired Yasuragi house, and the former-industrial residential retrofit of Lilla Tellus, both in Stockholm, with their design concept of “pocket parks” – micro public parks that can provide ecosystem services in compact urban settings. Tactical urbanism, also coined guerrilla or pop-up urbanism, also resemble urban acupuncture in their approach, although characteristically more ephemeral and temporary in nature, by its virtue of deliberately bypassing planning conventions. In contrast to urban acupuncture which can help redistribute resources strategically, for example with the help of participatory budgeting, tactical urbanism seems to focus more on raising awareness and reintroducing spontaneity to place-making. Check out the Tactical Urbanist’s Guide for DIY solutions.

Conclusion: Less is (much) more

While it may seem to some of us that the triple Big Brothers of neoliberal capitalist accumulation, relentless technological innovation, and mass (over-)consumption rule our world in many respects (for better or worse), molecular physics can remind us that it is space that fills up most of what matters to us. As we are mostly made up of space, decluttering our lives and society could help us focus on the worthy and most important, and support our capacity to build a sustainable legacy for the future. Though of course we may not need to be as radical as the Greek philosopher Diogenes, who in the 4th century BC declared: “(He) has the most who is most content with the least”.

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Urban Heat Island for Beginners: Part 3 *

The Vertical Profile of UHI

Any change in the surface energy budget and in the surface temperatures produces effects on urban heat island (UHI) that can be noticed also in its vertical profile. The difference of temperatures between urban core and rural site origins different momentum at different heights in urban canopy layer (Oke, 2006). The vertical difference of temperatures at different heights is mostly visible during nights (Landsberg, 1981). A quite common phenomenon is the crossover effect of temperature in the sky layers. It is the steeper increase of the air temperature over rural sites than urban ones that determines at a variable height a crossover point in which the rural air temperature is higher than the urban one.

The increase in temperature at different heights is mainly due to the more stable climatic condition on rural areas, while urban areas are characterized by a relative instability (Santamouris, 2006).

Typically, the vertical profile of the urban heat island is influenced by wind especially during nights. Summers, in 1964, expressed the magnitude of the UHI in Montreal as inversely dependent on wind speed (Landsberg, 1981). However, Landsberg (1981) affirmed that since every urban area is characterized by a different morphology and a different climatology is not possible to generalize the results obtained for other cities.

Oke (1976) shows the relation between the UHI and the wind speed in Vancouver. By his study it results a residual, although small, UHI also under high velocity wind conditions. In contrast, in correspondence of weak wind speed it is possible verify a stronger UHI.

Wind speed in an urban context is heavily influence by the urban morphology (Shahgedanova, Burt, & Davies, 1997; Montavez, Rodriguez, & Jimenez, 2000; Gaffin, et al., 2007).

At the beginning of the twentieth century, Kremsen focused his research on the decrease in wind speed in urban areas. He observed in Berlin during a decade a wind speed drop of 24% (Landsberg, 1981). Almost the same decrease was observed also in New York City. In Maryland it has been observed that wind speed was about 70% weaker than that recorded in the airport (Landsberg, 1981). Many authors have attributed the wind speed decrease to the increase in urbanization (e.g., Bacci & Maugeri, 1992; Brunetti, Mangianti, Maugeri, & Nanni, 2000).

The wind speed not only varies in the urban pattern in dependence on its density, but it also varies with the height according to the urban roughness.

Taylor found the expression of the vertical wind profile in a neutrally stratified atmosphere (Landsberg, 1981):


Equation 1 Vertical wind profile

Where k is the von Kàrmàn’s constant, its value is about 0.4; h is the height of the measurement; z0 is the superficial roughness; u* is the friction velocity given by:

ū* = τ/ρ

Equation 2 Friction velocity expression

τ is the surface shearing stress and ρ is the atmospheric density. z0 can be expressed as follows (Landsberg, 1981):

z0=h average/2A

Equation 3 Urban superficial roughness

Where h average is the mean height of buildings; A is the ratio between the cross section beaten by the wind and the area of buildings in that area (Landsberg, 1981).

Nakamura and Oke (1988) suggest a simplified expression for wind velocity in street canyons:

ūcanyon = p ūroof

Equation 4 Mean canyon wind speed

Where ūcanyon is the horizontal mean wind speed measured in the street canyon center at a height of 0.06H; p is a factor depending on H/W and ūroof is the wind speed at a height of 1/2H above the roof level. For a wind velocity up to 5 m s-1 Nakamura and Oke found an aspect ratio (H/W) of about 1, p ≈ 2/3.

Canyon effect at micro scale can channel wind and maximize its velocity; this is due to a wrong design of street dimensions. Oke (1988) found the mathematical correlation between the wind velocity and H/W ratio of a street canyon. The high decrease in the wind, or, on the contrary the high increase in the wind speed can be a hazard for population. Oke (1988) found that a ratio H/W of about 0.65 can ensure the best comfort for people. If the high wind velocity can be a hazard for population, on the other hand, the excessive decrease in wind speed can provoke the stagnation of pollutants with effects on human health.

The urban canyons geometry also plays a crucial role in the energy balance. The canyon surfaces are important because by their characteristics depend the amount of energy absorbed and re-radiated. Street canyon characterized by a high ratio between height and width provokes the trapping of solar radiations and the increase in temperatures especially during night (Santamouris, 2006). Although, typically, just a little amount of solar radiation reaches the canyon surface, the emitted radiation depends on the sky view factor (SVF).

The sky view factor is defined as the “openness of a site within an urban setting”  (Grimmond, 2007). Such a factor plays an important role in the thermal behavior of the street canyon in the urban environment. In the urban canyons both the pavement and the building façades are involved in the thermal balance. During the day, the surface temperature mainly depends on the solar radiation reaching the canyon, thus depends also on the aspect ratio (H/W) and on orientation, and depends also on the thermal and optic characteristics of the building materials. At night, the façade temperature is governed by the radiative balance. Its value depends on the SVF.



Bacci, P., & Maugeri, M. (1992). The urban heat island of Milan. Il nuovo cimento, 15 (4)

Brunetti, M., Mangianti, F., Maugeri, M., & Nanni, T. (2000). Urban heat island bias in Italian air temperature series. Nuovo Cimento, 23 (4)

Gaffin, S. R., Rosenzweig, C., Khanbilvardi, R., Parshall, L., Mahani, S., Glickman, H., et al. (2007). Variations in New York city’s urban heat island strength over time and space. Theoretical and Applied Climatology

Grimmond, S. (2007). Urbanization and global environmental change: local effects of urban warming. The Royal Geographical Society, 83-88

Landsberg, H. E. (1981). The Urban Climate (Vol. 28). New York: International Geophysics Series

Montavez, J. P., Rodriguez, A., & Jimenez, J. I. (2000). A Study of the Urban Heat Island of Granada. International Journal of Climatology, 20, 899-911

Nakamura, Y., & Oke, T. (1988). Wind, temperature and stability conditions in an E-W oriented urban canyon. Atmospheric Environment, 22 (12), 2691-2700

Oke, T. R. (1976). The distinction between canopy and boundary layer urban heat islands. Atmosphere, 14, 268-277

Oke, T. R. (1988). Street Design and Urban Canopy Layer Climate. Energy and Buildings, 11, 103-113

Oke, T. R. (2006). Instruments and Observing Methods – Initial Guidance to Obtain Representative. (W. M. Organization, Ed.) Retrieved August 30, 2010, from World Meteorological Organization: http://www.wmo.int/pages/index_en.html

Santamouris, M. (2006). Environmental design of urban buildings. An integrated approach.London: Earthscan

Shahgedanova, M., Burt, T. P., & Davies, T. D. (1997). Some aspects of the three-dimensional heat island in Moscow. International Journal of Climatology, 17, 1451-1465

* Rearranged text from: Susca, T. (2011). Evaluation of the Surface Albedo in a LCA Multi-scale Approach. The Case Study of Green, White and Black Roofs in New York City. Ph.D. Thesis

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UX for the city

In this post I explore how the notion of User Experience (UX), a key dimension of Human Computer Interaction (HCI), can enhance urban planning. Applying user-centred design and management approaches to cities, in turn, can also enrich the field of HCI.

Cities are made by people. Yet, are cities made for people? Or rather: for whom, and by whom? Couldn’t urban designers, decision-makers and residents meet up for lunch more often? Everyone has a stake in nurturing supportive urban environments. There are many incentives to increase dialogue and co-production among all stakeholders in spatial planning (e.g. Rittel and Webber 1973, Healey 2012, Albrechts 2013). Two examples:

Greater collaboration could help address growing divides between people. Inequalities are growing in many parts of the world, including the UK (e.g. income disparities, rising homelessness, and related health disparities). The richest 1% are thriving, but for how long? In many cities, the polarisation between gated communities and slums seems anything but sustainable.

Austerity calls for increased engagement. In contexts of austerity in local government, as in the UK, involving users in the design and management of public space could help explore the pros and cons of privatisation and public-private partnerships. For example, funds for public parks in British local councils are melting like ice-cream in summer heat, potentially jeopardising their future provision of ecosystem services to urban residents. In Newcastle, the city council is exploring ways of engaging the public and community groups more actively in the actual maintenance of green urban parks, since its budget for parks and recreation has shrunk tenfold between 2011 and 2016.

The Big Society” is becoming catch-all term for key government services being slowly devolved to the public — compare David Cameron’s launch of the Big Society programme in 2010, and Theresa May’s (even gloomier?) “shared society”. For better or worse, this new way of delivering public service cannot happen without end-users.

UX matters

The notion of “user experience” (UX) emerged in the field of Human Computer Interaction to make computer systems more “humane”. It was a reaction against excessively technical and performance-based approaches to software and website usability, in order to include such fuzzy aspects as users’ feelings (Hassenzahl and Tractinsky 2006). The picture below sums up neatly the difference in experience between a product that is pleasant to use, and one that isn’t.

Bad UX (I hate everything and you!!) vs Great UX (love my life! And you! And puppies!)

Picture credits: Bad UX vs. Great UX, by Jane Aldrich (reproduced with permission) https://userexperiencerocks.wordpress.com/2014/03/24/good-ux-it-does-a-body-good/

User experience is an essential add-on to the more traditional notions of utility and usability. In a blog titled “Usability 101”, Jakob Nielsen defines utility as “whether a design provides the features you need” and usability as “how easy and pleasant these features are to use”. While utility is about getting things done, usability is about pleasant user experiences. A product that meets both criteria can be considered useful.

In a nutshell, “UX” means considering users’ needs, aspirations, and personal and cultural identities in product design and evaluation. It requires considering how these affective/emotional and socio-cultural dimensions influence the way technology is being appropriated by users. It also means recognising the social life of technology: that the use of technology is all about experience, rather than just fool-proof functionality and performance. In other words, users’ adoption of technology is as much about “being”, self-actualisation and social expression as it is about getting things done (Hassenzahl 2004, McCarthy and Wright 2004).

Advocates of collaborative product design (e.g. Wright and McCarthy 2010) also consider that product design should start with users’ needs, particularly those of disadvantaged groups in society, for example in the form of applications that support healthcare, education or mobility. Participatory design of technology is best achieved by engaging end-users as co-designers in iterative cycles of product development and evaluation.

UX for the city

User-centred urban design and management enable to make cities for people, especially if based on the active, iterative participation of end-users. For example, user participation can enhance place-making processes, and complement the legacy of expert observations of end-users by the like of Jan Gehl and William Holly White.

Carefully designed and implemented digital technologies have a central role to play in delivering user-friendly cities. From civic hackathons and gamification to participatory budgeting, living labs, and augmented reality, there are now wide arrays of techniques and methods to engage residents in expressing their needs and preferences. These technologies allow to design with and for users.

Here UX becomes recursive: both the means of engaging users and the deliverables of having engaged them (e.g. urban development projects, plans, and strategies) can embody a strong participatory approach to effectively meet user needs and aspirations. In other words, user experiences should become integral to both processes and outcomes.

Some noteworthy efforts for considering user experience in urban planning include opportunities for more children-friendly planning in Scotland, as well as a recent framework developed by Arup.  However, fully considering children’s experiences does not fall short of challenges in terms of political will and societal awareness. Unicef considers that children’s needs should be at the heart of all decision-making in cities. Case studies show that dialogue and co-exploration of issues and solutions can be preliminary steps toward empowerment (e.g. in Wrexham town, North Wales).

Engagement initiatives need not be top-down. 12-year old Roman set up a Minecraft lounge for everyone in his neighbourhood in Winnipeg, Canada, enabling all participants to learn, have fun and make valuable design suggestions.

Designing for user experience is not without difficulties however. Notions such as “equity” or “fairness” in planning remain slippery or ill-defined (Attoh 2011), which has consequences for sectoral applications, such as green park accessibility (Rigolon 2016), as well as more strategic orientations, such as urban resilience (Meerow and Newell 2016). Multicultural planning, or planning for diversity rather than difference, also brings its own set of challenges: different individuals and communities often have different needs, and fulfilling them is important to improve the experience of all city users. Failing to do so can exacerbate socio-economic differences and divides.

Measuring UX, in planning as in HCI, can also be tricky, because loaded with assumptions.

Notwithstanding challenges, some cities are already formally applying UX to city planning, such as Gainesville, Florida.

Closing the loop

If the notion of user experience derived from Human Computer Interaction, supported by a wide array of digital and physical technologies, can enhance place-making, then this quality can also enrich the field of HCI. Designing cities with and for a diversity of users is difficult yet essential, especially in terms of social, cultural, environmental and intergenerational equity.

Improving UX in the city by means of useful and engaging technology provides many opportunities for HCI to address social concerns, and contribute to close some of the gaps between people. “UX for the city” can become a recursive entreprise, as user experience can be advantageously coded into all aspects and at all scales of system design, evaluation and optimisation.


Albrechts, L. (2013). “Reframing strategic spatial planning by using a coproduction perspective.” Planning Theory 12(1): 46-63.

Attoh, K. A. (2011). “What kind of right is the right to the city?” Progress in Human Geography 35(5): 669-685.

Hassenzahl, M. (2004). “The interplay of beauty, goodness, and usability in interactive products.” Hum.-Comput. Interact. 19(4): 319-349.

Hassenzahl, M. and N. Tractinsky (2006). “User experience – a research agenda.” Behaviour & Information Technology 25(2): 91-97.

Healey, P. (2012). “Re-enchanting democracy as a mode of governance.”

McCarthy, J. and P. Wright (2004). “Technology as experience.” interactions 11(5): 42-43.

Meerow, S. and J. P. Newell (2016). “Urban resilience for whom, what, when, where, and why?” Urban Geography: 1-21.

Rigolon, A. (2016). “A complex landscape of inequity in access to urban parks: A literature review.” Landscape and Urban Planning 153: 160-169.

Rittel, H. W. J. and M. M. Webber (1973). “Dilemmas in a general theory of planning.” Policy Sciences 4(2): 155-169.

Wright, P. and J. C. McCarthy (2010). Experience-centered design: designers, users, and communities in dialogue. San Rafael, Calif., Morgan & Claypool.

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