The speed and scale of contemporary urbanization is unprecedented, and it brings along tremendous social, environmental, economic and politics problems – while also generating enormous opportunities for livelihood improvement. With a new Future Cities Lab Global, ETH Zürich seeks to integrate and strategically advance its natural science competencies in the domain of urban science. The ambition of FCL Global, on whose research plans and governance scheme I currently counsel, and which brings together about 25 professorships and senior scientists, and 50 post-docs and PhD students, is to produce inter-disciplinary and transformative research, teaching and public outreach. Focussing on the challenges of digitization, inclusive planning, blue/green/bright infrastructure development and public health-oriented design, among other things, it seeks to promote more sustainable forms of urbanization in European and Asian settlements, through science, by design, and in place.
Grêt-Regamey, Adrienne; Cairns, Stephen; Erath, Alex; Hagmann, Jonas; Stokols, Andrew (2018). Future Cities Lab Global: Outline Proposal. Singapore/Zürich: ETH Zürich and FCL Singapore, 88p. noPDF
During the year 2017, I am counselling another Pro Helvetia Förderprojekt in visual arts. The project is developed by photographer Giacomo Bianchetti. It addresses the power of global corporations, the collusion of public and private stakeholders, as well as the exclusionary dispositives by which annual Bilderberg meetings are accompanied. Having followed the latter conferences for many years and through different European countries, Giacomo’s Bilderberg 2017 project develops a new technological and visual rendering of this high-level get-together, while also contrasting it with his previous works and exhibitions.
For more information visit Giacomo Bianchetti’s website or download his publication on Bilderberg 2015 in Telfs-Buchen (Austria) here.
Since winter 2015, I am counselling a Pro Helvetia Förderprojekt in visual arts. The project is developed by photographer Salvatore Vitale, and seeks to capture practices of contemporary national security management in Switzerland. Under the title How to secure a country, he visualises standard operating procedures of national danger management broadly defined – the control of borders, people, goods, urban spaces, mobility and so on. By focusing on manuals for professional security production, and their practical implementation in the field, he lends attention to – and displays in new ways – the difficult and bureaucratic rationalisation of the fluid thing termed ‘(in-)security’.
For more information and early results of this project, visit Salvatore Vitale’s website or read his interview for American Suburb X.