Pandemic Urbanism

A virtual symposium on COVID-19 and cities | May 29, 2020

What does COVID-19 mean for city life? What are the implications of this pandemic for urban mobility, sociability, politics, and density?

Featuring an opening plenary with:

ANN FORSYTH

Harvard University Graduate School of Design

ERIC KLINENBERG

New York University Dept. of Sociology

RÍO OXAS

Co-founder, RAHOK

Join the conversation on our emerging state of pandemic urbanism in this virtual symposium.

The novel coronavirus pandemic has transformed cities around the world virtually overnight. Much of the cultural vibrance, economic strength, and social innovation that characterizes cities can be credited to their concentration of people and activity.  Put simply, cities bring people together, and togetherness allows for complex and fruitful exchange, resilient social structures, efficient use of pooled resources, and so on. But togetherness also brings risks, notably from infectious disease. A pandemic feeds on propinquity.  “Social distance,” while a short-term public health imperative, is antithetical to the very idea of the urban. Long-term responses have also, historically, tended to be anti-urban, in that the risk of infection has been used as justification for slum clearance and suburban sprawl. At the same time, the current pandemic is revealing the resilience of cities, and provoking radical reimaginings of what the city could be.

This one-day event creates a forum for a wide range of voices to share early thoughts on COVID-19 and cities.

Organized by current and recent University of Washington doctoral students, with support from the College of Built Environments, the PhD Program in the Built Environment and the Interdisciplinary PhD Program in Urban Design and Planning.

Register

Full schedule to be announced soon.


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Header image: Flickr user Nickolay Romensky