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June 30, 2014  |  permalink

Aspen Ideas: Future Megacities and the Fate of Millions

I’m in Aspen this weekend for the tenth annual installment of the Aspen Ideas Festival, where I’m moderating several sessions on a new track named “The Metropolis.” The first, “Future Megacities and the Fate of Millions” brought together Shining Hope For Communities’ Kennedy Odede, McKinsey’s Shirish Sankhe, and the Sante Fe Institute’s Luis Bettancourt for a lively and wide-ranging conversation on cities, slums, and how to build better versions of each.

Video of the session is above; the official description is below:

A generation ago, New York and Tokyo were the world’s only megacities. By 2025, the UN predicts there will be 37. All but a handful will be in the developing world. The fate of millions, then, rests on the question: what will life in these megacities look like? While density is an almost universally celebrated urban characteristic, rapid population growth can also result in poorly planned, congested, and unsafe settlements, leading many to ask: Are slums the inevitable urban form of the future? How might big data and progressive planning ensure that even the fastest growing cities are places of opportunity for the billions that will live in them?

 

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Greg Lindsay is a journalist, urbanist, futurist, and speaker. He is the director of applied research at NewCities and director of strategy at its mobility offshoot CoMotion.  He is also a partner at FutureMap, a geo-strategic advisory firm based in Singapore, a non-resident senior fellow of The Atlantic Council’s Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative, and co-author of Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next.

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