This session is going to be a sort of conversation between people who study the sustainability of cities. Each person comes from a different field, so we will hear from ecologists, physical scientists, planners, and social scientists. They are going to talk about how their field and own work looks at the integration of cities and nature. This integration is often looked at to provide benefits to people (protection from floods, shading the sun, habitat for animals, gardens, parks, etc.). However, this integration is often thought about without considering other aspects of what makes cities work (buildings, infrastructure, people, etc.). The speakers in this session will also bring ideas about how to connect the more ecological perspectives on cities with these more traditionally urban topics. It is our hope that by having this conversation with several different perspectives we will be able to identify new ways to study cities, as well as new ways to plan and manage cities so that they function better for both people and nature.
Mitchell Pavao-Zuckerman, Department of Environmental Science and Technology, University of Maryland, College Park
Marissa Matsler, Cary Institute for Ecosystem Studies
Jack Ahern, Professor of Landscape Architecture, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Zbigniew Grabowski, Portland State University