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Posted June 18, 2010
Ecological Urbanism is a must-read book. Mohsen Mostafavi and Gareth Doherty weave together a comprehensive agenda of urban interventions, ideas, policies, and strategies from different geographic settings in order to build a powerful model and vision for a more ecological future. Drawing on this massive, solid effort and on well-grounded research, the editors provide a series of detailed key lessons from all corners of the world for building a future that is less dependent on diminishing resources and is more socially, economically, and ecologically sensitive. Based on the integration between different disciplines and fields-including architecture, planning, urban design, landscape architecture, and engineering-Ecological Urbanism explores different approaches and solutions that contribute to a more ecological and just world. As Sir Peter Medawar said, "If politics is the art of the possible, research is surely the art of the soluble."
Scaling up is a significant aspect of this book since the vast majority of previous research and studies have focused on architectural and building scales. Only a handful of studies have focused on city and regional scales. Therefore, Ecological Urbanism addresses this gap, providing a collection of theories and practices that aim to articulate and advance design strategies, real solutions, and tactics that craft the foundation of the post-carbon city.
Human beings need a revolution in urban problem solving. The fate of the entire earth is one of the most urgent matters confronting humankind today. It will affect each of us, as well as our children and our children's children. Faced with the pressures of global warming, rapid growth, congestion, water shortage, drought, population explosion, urban sprawl, and pollution, cities today need to use land, water, energy, and resources with ever-increasing efficiency. The ultimate role of Ecological Urbanism is, in fact, to be a revolutionary and compelling guidebook that provides a knowledge base for a more livable and sustainable future for current and future generations. As a reference book Ecological Urbanism is a must read for academics, practitioners, students, policymakers, officials, economists, socialists, environmentalists, and anyone else concerned with the health and well-being of our cities.