Connected sustainable cities, which will evolve over the next decade, employ ubiquitous, networked intelligence to ensure the efficient and responsible use of the scarce resources – particularly energy and water – that are required for a city’s operation, together with the effective management of waste products that a city produces, such as carbon emissions to the atmosphere. Through a series of prospective scenarios, Connected sustainable cities illustrates some of the ways in which inhabitants may use and manage their living spaces, move around the city, work, shop, pursue their educational, cultural, and recreational interests, and make well informed, responsible personal choices. These scenarios are accompanied by brief sketches of the existing and emerging technologies, products, and systems that will support new, intelligently sustainable urban living patterns. In addition, there are short discussions of some of the theoretical, policy, and design issues that these scenarios raise.
Connected sustainable cities is starting point for the investigation and debates that will be necessary as citizens, technologists, designers, policy experts, and political and business leaders begin to shape the new urban areas we urgently need to create in the near future.
William J. Mitchell is Alexander Dreyfoos Professor of Architecture and Media Arts and Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), director of the Smart Cities research group at the MIT Media Laboratory, and director of the MIT Design Laboratory. He was formerly dean of the School of Architecture and Planning at MIT. He has played a leading role in the ArchNet, FACADE, and Palladio Virtual Museum projects. His latest books are Imagining MIT: Designing a Campus for the Twenty-First Century and World’s Greatest Architect, both from MIT Press.
Federico Casalegno is the director of the MIT Mobile Experience Lab and associate director of MIT Design Laboratory. A social scientist with an interest in the impact of networked digital technologies on human behavior and society, he both teaches and leads research at MIT, focusing especially on the area of rethinking and designing interactive media to foster connections between people, information, and physical places using cutting-edge information technology. Most recently, he is leading a new strategic alliance with the Fondazione Bruno Kessler in Trento, Italy, to build a pioneering sustainable connected home. He has published several scientific paper, books and articles. He was awarded Best Concept prize for the Living Memory, connected community project, by the American Leading Industrial Designers I.D. Magazine, 2001 and the Silver Prize Design Concept awarded by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA).