IIAS Lunch Lecture

Planetary Urbanization for Human Flourishing - Alternative Concepts of Resilient Cities in Asia

A lecture by: Professor Mike Douglass, Asian Urbanisms Cluster at the Asia Research Institute, and Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore.

Registration required (see below).

Picture: slum area, Ahmenabad, India; By E. Dyan (CC BY 2.0).

Urbanization is now a planetary process incorporating all corners of the world into a global urban matrix of flows and human settlement.  Asia is at the forefront of this process, and the growing magnitude of problems accompanying its accelerated urban transition have led to alternative proposals for making cities more resilient by ameliorating the anthropogenic sources of environmental degradation that are severely diminishing the quality of urban life and the economic prospects of cities.  Smart cities, eco-cities, and sustainable cities are among the formulations that are being applied to urban mega-projects in many countries in Asia.  

A critique of these concepts is presented by, first, unpacking and redefining the concept of resilience from the perspective of environmental disasters, and, second, by developing the concept of human flourishing intertwined with planetary flourishing to assess each of the alternative resilient city models. The corporatization of cities that drives them is contrasted with the rise of progressive cities propelled by grassroots mobilizations and political reform.

Mike Douglass is Professor and Leader of the Asian Urbanisms Cluster at the Asia Research Institute 
and Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, where he teaches and does research on cities in Asia. He is Emeritus Professor of Urban Planning and former Director of the Globalization Research Center, University of Hawaii.  His Ph.D. is in Urban Planning from UCLA.  He has been a consultant on urban policy and planning for major international development and donor agencies as well as national and local governments in Asia.  His current research focuses on three areas: the vernacular city, spaces of hope, and disaster governance in Asia.  Recent books include: Globalization, the Rise of Civil Society and Civic Spaces in Pacific Asia Cities; Connected Cities: Histories, Hinterlands, Hierarchies and Networks; and Building Urban Communities: The Politics of Civic Space in Asia.

Registration (required)
If you would like to attend this lunch lecture, please register via the form provided below. 

About IIAS Lunch Lectures

Every month, an IIAS researcher or visiting scholar will present his or her work-in-progress in an informal setting to colleagues and other interested attendees. IIAS organises these lunch lectures to give the research community the opportunity to freely discuss ongoing research and exchange thoughts and ideas.