The international conference ISU Talks #05: FUTURE CITIES hosted by the Institute for Sustainable Urbanism has successfully taken place at TU Braunschweig on November 14.The conference explored the potentials and challenges for urbanism in a digitalizing world and how it will shape our cities.
The ISU Talks 5 Future Cities conference – held at TU Braunschweig, Germany – offered the opportunity to discuss the influence of digitalization, data and technology on urbanism. The well-frequented participation shows that architects, urban designers, researches as well as city administrations are aware of the fundamental changes occurring due the fast spreading of digital technologies into our daily life. The vibrant discussions emphasized the quest for innovative methods, tools and processes in order to enhance the human capacity to analyse, calculate, combine and visualize information. Enabling a broader perspective on urban development, as well as evidence based and knowledge driven design of sustainable cities and spaces for all. We believe that the role of digitalization on urban design must be enlightened, and events such as ISU Talks are offering researchers a space to do so.
In the poster session a variety of mechanisms to understand urban space were presented, such as sensors, GIS, participation platforms, but also the theory behind the digital.
Sven Schneider (Bauhaus-Universität Weimar | DeCodingSpaces) gave us an introductory lecture on the potential of parametric design. He expressed the need of architects and urban designers to think algorithmically and how the application of computational tools into the design is developing. Showing the vast opportunities, Sven Schneider also revealed its limitations and the in depth research which is needed on parameters such as human behaviour to enhance urban analytics and parametrics.
Pablo Martínez and Mar Santamaria Varas (IAAC) talked about strategies to collect/mine and visualise data. Their office (300.000km/s) is working on several projects for the city of Barcelona to understand the city and elaborate decision tools for the authorities as well as citizens. Access to data and its mind sparkling visualization enriches debates and decisions in urban development and beyond.
Dana Behrman (UNStudio) presented several approaches on touch sensitive tools, such as pathways generating energy, and immersive environments. Introducing various projects, she pointed out the need for knowledge driven design and openness towards new technologies all the way from the design process to actual implementation to design Future Cities and Spaces.
The special ISU Talks edition of TU Braunschweig’s lecture series Architekturposistionen brought together more than 170 students, researchers and the wider public to Caroline Bos’ lecture (UNStudio). She presented UNStudio’s fundaments of design approaches compiled in their new book Knowledge Matters which she introduced along the overwhelming portfolio of design projects of pavilions, buildings, city blocks and neighbourhoods and the profound routing in strategical architectural methods.
The organizers were excited to receive students and professionals (including planning authorities) in the Architekturpavillon of TU Braunschweig from all over the Germany and the world, promoting the discussion and networking for future projects and enriching the dialog on the question of Urbanism in a digitalising world. ISU would like to thank the Alfred Herrhausen Society, the TU Braunschweig, the BS|Energy and the Spanish Embassy for the support, and thank all the attendees for the enthusiastic participation.
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