David Carlson, publisher of David Report, will make a presentation at the International Conference on Culture and Creativity Development 2010 in Tapei, Taiwan this week. The theme for the presentation is – A wiser urban life. Below is the abstract for the presentation:

How do we best develop a city’s built-in capacity to offer lasting quality of life seen in a holistic perspective? How shall we make it live long and well? Our lifestyle is constantly changing and what was a truth yesterday is a lie today. Unfortunately poverty is growing and our unhealthy consumerism is the root cause of environmental unsustainability – just look at the rapid discarding of products. Greed is all around – shortsighted economic planning ends up in recessions. Globalisation is erasing regional specialness with the speed of a bullet – wherever you go, you find look-a-like airports, hotels, fast-food-chains or superbrand flagship stores.

We need new players in the urban planning scene. With design we can shape our surrounding world and the society of tomorrow. Through integrating social, ecologic and cultural elements we can create more sustainable and thus humanistic cities. The designers of tomorrow will need a design thinking based on a open-minded view of the world; as pioneers, dieticians, catalysts and spin doctors – reflecting the principle that design is multidisciplinary reaching way beyond the obvious. It’s crucial to question, reach awareness and think in new paths when it comes to creating better lives for lots of people. It’s also necessary to improve cooperation and knowledge sharing among politicians, companies, institutions and practitioners of design in its broadest context. Only then can we improve diversity, justice and integration and provide for better and more culturally connected design solutions – long time value instead of short term profit.

A city where individuals prosper, cultural and economic life develops well. Wellbeing generally emanates from the environment we call our home. It’s a fact that people only care for their environment if they feel it is adapted to them and their needs. It could be a place in the sun with clean air, less pollution and a good infrastructure or in the middle of a bubbling metropolis. This also concerns our mental space – unfortunately our inner environment is affected by mental pollution in a way similar to the way our outer environment is polluted by different poisons. In urban life you are exposed for thousand of brand messages every day all year round.

To create the city of the future, we have to understand the citizen of the future. Up to today we have seen two major contrary directions – people that just continue having fun before everything falls apart while others focus on doing “the right thing”. Who is the citizen of the future? Will we see completely new dwellers that can combine “good kharma” with hedonism?

There are three billion urban dwellers in the world. It is not an exaggeration that to regain control of how cities develop is critical for the future of the world.

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