Webinar: Biophilic Cities – Design for Planetary Health and Human Flourishing

On October 22, 2021, we held a webinar about biophilic cities featuring Professor Tim Beatley from the University of Virginia. Check out the recording below!

PEC works toward building better communities by encouraging investment in attractive, livable urban centers. We invited Professor Tim Beatley to present on maintaining nature in our urban environments and the Biophilic Cities designation.

Few things have been as important or as reassuring during the global pandemic as nature. We are gradually appreciating that contact with nature–birds, trees, biodiversity–is not optional in the cities where we live but absolutely essential to a flourishing life. Equally true, green and nature-filled cities will be an essential part of the response to climate change, cooling urban neighborhoods, mitigating urban flooding, sequestering carbon, and generally helping to make cities more resilient. Consequently, a new vision of cities is emerging for the 21st century: Biophilic Cities.

Building on the essential insight of biophilia, that we are hardwired as a species to want and need contact with nature, this new vision is gaining traction in cities around the world, through a network of cities and organizations advocating for and working to implement this new approach. Beatley will discuss the prospects of this new vision, the success to date, including the work of the Biophilic Cities Network, and the obstacles we still face and must overcome in implementing this hopeful urban future.

Timothy Beatley is the Teresa Heinz Professor of Sustainable Communities, in the Department of Urban and Environmental Planning, School of Architecture at the University of Virginia, where he has taught for more than thirty years. He also helped to found the global Biophilic Cities Network.