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.
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.
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)
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.
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
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
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.
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.
“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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