Here is a brief list of books and articles I have been dealing with to complete the first stage of the PhD project on the technological imaginary in the discursive regime of the smart city. I am more than happy that these last few weeks have meant a substantial progress and the core framework is ready to go for deeper details. I will share here the basic structure I am working with, as an improved version of the six concepts underlying the smart cty discourse that served as a first step some months ago. Now this conceptual dissection is getting more solid with a better structured analysis on the implictions of this imaginary. In the meantime, this is a selected compilation of some of the readings that have been more helpful so far.
The Responsive City: Engaging Communities Through Data-Smart Governance, by Susan Crawford and Stephen Goldsmith.
Edited by Matt Ratto and Megan Boler
by Justin McGuirk
A colorful journey through Latin America—a crucible of architectural and urban innovation
What makes the city of the future? How do you heal a divided city?
Urban acupuncture, by Jaime Lerner (forthcoming book)
During his three terms as mayor of Curitiba, Brazil in the 1970s and ‘80s, architect and urbanist Jaime Lerner transformed his city into a global model of the sustainable and livable community. From the pioneering Bus Rapid Transit system to parks designed to catch runoff and reduce flooding and the creation of pedestrian-only zones, Lerner has been the driving force behind of a host of innovative urban projects. In more than forty years of work in cities around the globe, Lerner has found that changes to a community don’t need to be large-scale and expensive to have a transformative impact—in fact, one block, park, or a single person can have an outsized effect on life in the surrounding city.
In Urban Acupuncture, Lerner celebrates these “pinpricks” of urbanism—projects, people, and initiatives from around the world that ripple through their communities to uplift city life. With meditative and descriptive prose, Lerner brings readers around the world to streets and neighborhoods where urban acupuncture has been practiced best, from the bustling La Boqueria market in Barcelona to the revitalization of the Cheonggyecheon River in Seoul, South Korea. Through this journey, Lerner invites us to re-examine the true building blocks of vibrant communities—the tree-lined avenues, night vendors, and songs and traditions that connect us to our cities and to one another.
Urban Acupuncture is the first of Jaime Lerner’s visionary work to be published in English. It is a love letter to the elements that make a street hum with life or a neighborhood feel like home, penned by one of the world’s most successful advocates for sustainable and livable urbanism.
Based on 6 years of blogging on popupcity.net for an audience of millions, Pop-Up City: City-Making in a Fluid World tells an inspiring story about the rise of pop-up culture and its impact on cities across the globe by showcasing eye-opening ideas, concepts and trends that make a difference in the city of today and tomorrow, ranging from urban hacks to modular hotels, and from parasite cinemas to pop-up retail.
This book is an effort to explore the newly emerging field of urban interaction design that addresses these issues. In the first part of the book, ‘Foundations’, we look into its origins. Where do its practitioners come from? How are they working together? What methodologies do they bring to the table? What are the key concepts they are addressing in their work? In the second part of the book named ‘Trends’, we go into current developments in the networked city and how urban interaction design as a field addresses these. Taken together, these sections will not give the definite definition or overview of this field. But hopefully there’s enough in here to convincingly claim that the further development of the field matters.
Hackable Cities: A Toolkit for Re-Imagining Your Neighborhood
A new forthcoming book by the great Rob Kitchin, another book I will read this year for sure.