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Does Our Planet Need A Stroke of Insight?

Does Our Planet Need A Stroke of Insight? | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
The issues of mental health and global health are closely linked -- if not one and the same.
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Sustainable Futures
Things to do, consider and act on to create a sustainable future for people and planet
Curated by Flora Moon
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Nobot wants to put people to work ... in robot form

Nobot wants to put people to work ... in robot form | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
We hear plenty of discussion about robots taking over our jobs, so it's a refreshing change to hear about a robot designed to create them instead. Its name is Nobot, and what makes this machine unique is that it's largely controlled remotely by a human being.
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With Compost Program, Keeping Waste From Going to Waste

With Compost Program, Keeping Waste From Going to Waste | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
New York City is joining a garbage revolution, with 100,000 households now required to put their organic waste into designated bins.
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Three Keys to Sustainable Urban Governance | TheCityFix

Three Keys to Sustainable Urban Governance | TheCityFix | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

The official launch of the Environmental Democracy Index (EDI) yesterday marked a major milestone for urban governance worldwide. Developed by the Access Initiative and World Resources Institute, EDI looks at environmental decision making at the national level and evaluates countries based on three factors: transparency, access to justice, and citizen engagement. These elements are important aspects of governance as a whole.


While significant in its depth of analysis and geographic scope, EDI currently focuses at a level that may seem distant from citizens living in cities and towns throughout these countries. The platform highlights essential actions for environmental democracy and governance at a nation level, but also suggests ways for improving governance processes in cities. Linking these national-level procedural rights to realities at the local level is essential for sustainable development. What does governance mean to these citizens? How does governance work at a local level and how can it improve quality of life and make cities more sustainable?


Urban governance is about building cities that are inclusive and accountable to their citizens. Recognizing and strengthening the relationships between various stakeholders—including citizens, civil society organizations, elected officials, and the public and private sectors—is critical to changing how cities are governed. These actors comprise the urban governance community and how they interact plays a vital role in making cities more sustainable. Moving forward, it will take engagement, continuity, and capacity to strengthen this community and ensure that cities are governed equitably and inclusively.

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Dispersion and Concentration in Metropolitan Employment | Newgeography.com

Dispersion and Concentration in Metropolitan Employment | Newgeography.com | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

The just released County Business Patterns indicates a general trend of continued employment dispersion to the newer suburbs (principally the outer suburbs) and exurbs but also greater concentration in the central business districts of the 52 major metropolitan areas in the United States (over 1 million population in 2013). County Business Patterns is a Census Bureau program that provides largely private-sector employment data by geography throughout the nation.


This article examines the most recent data, for 2013, with comparisons to 2007, which was the peak employment year and preceded the Great Recession, the most substantial economic decline in the United States since the Great Depression. There are also comparisons to 2010, the year in which national employment reached its lowest level (trough) before beginning what is, so far, a long and fairly arduous recovery. The analysis uses the City Sector Model (Note)

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Omaha Just Dramatically Improved Its Mass Transit System Without Spending Any Money

Omaha Just Dramatically Improved Its Mass Transit System Without Spending Any Money | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
The FORWARD plan brings frequency and all-week service to the heartland.
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In Defence of Wellbeing

In Defence of Wellbeing | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
William Davies’ new book The Happiness Industry is a fascinating and vivid journey through the history of economics, advertising, psychology, management and more.
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The Case for All-Day Transit Service, in 3 Infographics

The Case for All-Day Transit Service, in 3 Infographics | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Rush-hour commute trips only make up a small share of daily travel.
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Contest Aims to Harness Low-Cost Devices to Help the Poor

Contest Aims to Harness Low-Cost Devices to Help the Poor | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
The chip maker ARM and Unicef are trying to jump-start the development of low-cost wearable sensors for use in emerging nations.
Flora Moon's insight:
Hooray! The Internet of Things leveraged for the benefit of the bottom of the pyramid!
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In Uncertain Times, Design for Community

In Uncertain Times, Design for Community | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
When I think about climate change, I like to look at a photo of my daughter and her two dear friends—not just because of their sweet smiles, but because the photo offers an important clue to how we...
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America's Housing Affordability Crisis Is Long-Term and Pervasive

America's Housing Affordability Crisis Is Long-Term and Pervasive | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
A new analysis finds that what we see today is basically “the current manifestation of a long-run trend.”
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Toxin-absorbing nanosponges could be used to soak up localized infections

Toxin-absorbing nanosponges could be used to soak up localized infections | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
A research team at UC San Diego has added hydrogel to its innovative nanosponge technique, first announced in 2013. The addition allows for the method to be used to tackle localized infections without the need for antibiotics.
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Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems for a Changing Climate

Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems for a Changing Climate | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Resilient Agriculture recognizes the critical role that sustainable agriculture will play in the coming decades and beyond. The latest science on climate risk, resilience and climate change adaptation is blended with the personal experience of farmers
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Building a Hurricane-Ready Microgrid

Building a Hurricane-Ready Microgrid | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
With its shelter-in-place strategy, the City of Hoboken, New Jersey, plans a resilient microgrid to help residents stand their ground in the face of the next big storm.
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Scientists Sample the Ocean and Find Tiny Additions to the Tree of Life

Scientists Sample the Ocean and Find Tiny Additions to the Tree of Life | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Researchers studied plankton from around the globe and uncovered vast genetic diversity and clues to how warming temperatures may affect ocean life.
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Urban Food Forests Make Fruit Free For The Picking

Urban Food Forests Make Fruit Free For The Picking | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Urban orchards are dropping everything from apples to avocados on Seattle, Bloomington, Ind., Boston and several other cities. Advocates say orchards can have longer lasting impact than gardens.
Flora Moon's insight:

We'll be planting a couple of community fruit trees this winter....

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Far fewer black men than black women

Far fewer black men than black women | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Justin Wolfers, David Leonhardt, and Kevin Quealy for the Upshot explore the gender gap between the black male and female populations in the United States. It's wide. They are missing, largely beca...
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The T’ai Chi Sacred Marriage of Being & Doing: Living The Way of Nature

The T’ai Chi Sacred Marriage of Being & Doing: Living The Way of Nature | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
T’ai Chi is an ancient art form, where the artist perfects the art of being and doing while attuning with the Tao. ‘An artist is an instrument through which the Universe reveals itself’ – Goldschne...
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An Alaskan Island Goes 100% Renewable - CleanTechies

An Alaskan Island Goes 100% Renewable - CleanTechies | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

As most Alaskans can attest, energy in The Last Frontier is expensive. The average residential electricity rate of more than 18 cents per kWh is a full 50 percent higher than the national average, ranking among the highest in the country. That’s in part because outside the 50 hydro plants throughout the state, most of

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The Fifth Estate | Looking at ageing from a design perspective gets great results

The Fifth Estate | Looking at ageing from a design perspective gets great results | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

Planning, designing and constructing residential settings for older persons would benefit from a focus on wellbeing, happiness and social inclusion, rather than compliance, a recently completed report has found.

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The Uncelebrated Places Where America's Farm Economy Is Thriving | Newgeography.com

The Uncelebrated Places Where America's Farm Economy Is Thriving | Newgeography.com | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

We consume their products every day but economists give them little attention, and perhaps not enough respect. Yet America’s agriculture sector is not only the country’s oldest economic pillar but still a vital one, accounting for some 3.75 million jobs — not only in the fields, but in factories, laboratories and distribution. That compares to about 4.3 million jobs in the tech sector (which we analyzed last month here). Net farm income totaled $108 billion in 2014, according to preliminary figures from the USDA, up 24% from 2004.

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Why Worms Matter

Why Worms Matter | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
A new study shows that the slimy creatures battle climate change. Here’s how to help.
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The Networks Revolution

The Networks Revolution | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
Those who see networks as a fad likely see them only as a tactic, as opposed to a fundamental way of being. Not long ago, Scientific American published a guest blog looking at the revolution in hum...
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Three Ways Public Spaces Can Make Cities More Vibrant | TheCityFix

Three Ways Public Spaces Can Make Cities More Vibrant | TheCityFix | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it

“Life is the art of encounter even though there might be so much discord in life,” said the Brazilian poet Vinicius de Moraes, commenting on what he took to be the essence of human relations. Building on this, we can say that public spaces are at the essence of urban life. It’s in public spaces that these encounters occur and produce what we can call “the art of city life”.


When talking about public spaces, we need to first understand the important role they play in our concept of the city. Public spaces are where movements, interactions and connections between individuals happen. It is there, in freely accessible spaces, free of barriers or prejudices of any kind, that everyday city activities should occur.

However, the perception of public spaces is often restricted to images of parks and squares. Although streets, for example, count as public spaces, and generally represent the largest share of public space in a city, they are often forgotten as communal places. In large urban centers, roads dedicated to cars occupy on average 70 percent of total public space, leaving people with less than 30 percent.

Flora Moon's insight:

In Houston, where cars have been king, a bayou system has been transformed into a system of linear parks through a public-private partnership.  Opening ceremonies are June 20, 2015

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High costs of underfunding rail and other needs

High costs of underfunding rail and other needs | Sustainable Futures | Scoop.it
With funding in short supply, where should we invest our dollars? Ensuring the health and safety of our infrastructure, for one.
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