January 2019

Better Cities by Design

The 49th World Economic Forum annual meeting closed on 25 January 2019 with an agenda of global initiatives and commitments to address some of the world’s most pressing environmental, social and political problems - and while the problems are increasingly evident and easy to enumerate, the solutions are not. One thing’s for certain, a continued call for integrated global action is required.
A few key themes extracted this year include protecting the natural world, eliminating electronic waste, reducing deforestation, tackling plastic pollution, reusable packaging and disability inclusion. For industrial designers, these open up opportunities and new market challenges for innovation. 
In this edition, as we reference SDG 11, we highlight design’s role in the betterment of cities and the aspiration to make all communities and human settlements more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.


Tanya Müller “Cities have to design public spaces for people”

Tanya Müller, former Secretary of Environment in Mexico (2013-2018) is an Agronomist Engineer and founding director of World Urban Parks. Indeed, the design community has a key role to play in providing universal access to safe, inclusive and accessible, green and public spaces (UN SDG 11.7). Tanya Müller shared with WDO her opinion on the role of public spaces in making Mexico City a more sustainable city.
Read it here

See how these and other cities are setting the bar by making their communities more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable through design

Copenhagen: Creating the World's First Carbon Neutral Capital
Copenhagen has announced ambitious plans to become the world’s first carbon-neutral capital by 2025. Watch how they plan to achieve their goal

São Paulo: building better cities
Brazil’s business capital has reinvented its city centre through clever urbanism. Watch to find out more and meet the architects, gallery owners and transport visionaries powering this change
Four smart local design ideas leading the way to make Australia’s cities more amenable places to live
Harvesting and reusing stormwater on the South Bank of Brisbane, innovating garbage management in Maroochydore City through underground vacuum pipes, trialling a smart parking system around Canberra and building vertical gardens in Sydney
Read more
Zenata Eco-City, Africa’s first green city
This innovative urban development project in Morocco aims to present a possible solution to African urbanization issues. Construction is underway and should be finished by 2020
Read more
World Design Capital® Lille Metropole 2020 to transform its territory by design
The Organizing Committee of WDC 2020 calls for POCs (Proofs of Concept) which are design-led projects to accelerate the transformation of the territory by design
Learn more
SDGs and why they matter to Designers
In line with a number of SDGs now more than ever, industrial design prioritizes accessibility, affordability, reliability, sustainability, respect for the user and the environment.
Learn more
Designing Sustainable Cities: Case Studies Wanted
Do you have expertise in urban planning and design? Were you part of a World Design Capital (bid or programme) with a success story you’d like to share with other cities and communities? We'd like to hear from you! Contact us to contribute to our series of essays and case studies on the power of design to make cities and communities more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (SDG 11).
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