Shanghai Forum Explored Cities Through Varied Lenses
by Clare Jacobson
Are cities collections of problems that need to be solved or sites of innovation that offer opportunities? Are they best managed by top-down planning and policies or bottom-up entrepreneurialism? These themes and many more were the focus of the inaugural Princeton-Fung Global Forum, “The Future of the City,” held January 30–February 1 in Shanghai. The papers presented during the event were as diverse as its 48 speakers, a collection of international academics—20 from Princeton University—in architecture, engineering, ethics, history, meteorology, and other fields, as well as a handful of nonacademics. The multitude of voices did not offer a cohesive picture of the city, but attempted to present its variety through cross-disciplinary lenses.
C. Susan Grimmond, King’s College London, and I discuss the potential of reflective adaptive shading modules to reduce the Urban Heat Island phenomenon.