Toward the Future City: An Ethical Design Philosophy for Urban Habitats

Jared Gilbert
Director of Communications
COOKFOX Architects, New York City

Ever taller skyscrapers, increased density, and global interconnectivity are creating new pressures and complexities in both the urban environment and the public space. Contemporary attitudes toward shared environmental and social resources are shifting in response to the challenges of rising inequality, technological connectivity, and global security. Architects are beginning to respond with a heightened sense of ethical obligation to challenge these pressures in pursuit of a design that contributes to the health and well-being of the city, its inhabitants, and its ecology. This presentation discussed global trends in design and planning through the lens of building and project case studies – historic, contemporary, and future – and proposed solutions for how the living spaces, work places, and shared urban habitats of the future may be designed more ethically by restoring both the foundational ecological systems upon which cities are built and urban connections to nature, creating designs that foster social connectivity and equality.

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