2010 iLAB Resident, Philip Silva, writes ‘Cyborgs, Sewers and the Sensing City’

2010 iLAB Resident, Philip Silva, is now a contributing writer for a new blog called The Nature of Cities

Today, Phil published an article titled Cyborgs, Sewers and the Sensing City.

Check out the first paragraph below or click HERE for the full article.

“Cities have long been seen as the antithesis – or, at least, the absence – of nature. Yet in recent years, environmentalists started rethinking their long-held prejudices against urban areas. The rise of neighborhood-based environmental justice movements, beginning in the 1980’s, forced us to confront the human side of pollution and its relationship to urban poverty. The evolution of green building standards and advances in sustainable design helped us imagine an environmentally enlightened future for our offices and homes. The growing number of city-dwellers across the planet may have played the biggest role in our shifting perceptions of cities and nature. Moving “back to the land” and “living off the grid” could never be a tenable option for three and a half billion people. The result would end up closer to an explosion in suburban sprawl than a no-impact return to simpler times. Like it or not, we’ve realized that cities will have to figure into our schemes for a sustainable planet.”


The Nature of Cities is a new blog, started by David Maddox, that states:

Cities are fundamentally ecological spaces. They are ecosystems packed with trees and vegetation that comprise an urban forest. They house birds, insects, small mammals, diverse ecological habitats, and more. People live in them. They are connected to suburban and rural areas along ecological gradients. Human well being, social justice and effective urban design is intimately connected to the health of urban ecosystems.

We believe that nature in cities — by which we mean ecosystems, ecosystem function, biodiversity, communities, and the habitats of species — needs more voices, more perspectives and expanded conversation about its critical importance and how it can be promoted, conserved, and managed for the good of all.

We are a collaborative of 30 writers from many disciplines and from many places around the world. New pieces are published every Tuesday and rotate among our roster.


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