Urbanization & Transition of Cities

With their (ecological) footprint cities have a huge effect on the entire ecology of the planet. Their scale creates new dynamics, new complexity and new simultaneity of events and processes – physical, social and economic. With this website I would like to contribute my ideas about complex adaptive urban systems, ecologic sustainable urbanisme and social, cultural and economic urban development. Today there’s still time to share knowledge and ideas. Tomorrow it’s time to act.

Background

Arie Voorburg, consultant and (guest) lecturer & researcher at several universities. Traveled and gained life experience as an officer in the (merchant) navy. Once ashore, he immersed himself in studies of system ecology (co-evolutionary  complex systems, quantum biology), biophysics and philosophy and became fascinated by the urban phenomenon; the city in all its facets. Active for 30 years in the fields of ecology, biodiversity, sustainable development and complex –urban- systems.
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As cities expand in a transnational economy driven by interrelated dynamics (social, economic, financial, formal and informal, cultural, etc.) and through a continuous exchange of materials, energy, knowledge and abilities, they reconstruct ecological systems. Their scale creates new dynamics, new complexity and new simultaneity of events and processes – physical, social and economic. They host intense and complex interactions between different demographic, social, political, economic and ecological processes.
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Lectures & Research

Bio-ecologic inspired design principles (Biomimicry and bioclimatic design), Evolving Economy (Biobased, Circular, Inclusive Economy), Talent development (education and 21st century skills), Disruptive Technologies and new finance models.
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Drive

Globalization 4.0 has only just begun, but we are already vastly underprepared for it. Clinging to an outdated mindset and tinkering with our existing processes and institutions will not do. Rather, we need to redesign them from the ground up, so that we can capitalize on the new opportunities that await us, while avoiding the kind of disruptions that we are witnessing today.
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WHO DECIDES?

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There are no longer any places left on Earth untouched by humans. In the newly designated ‘human age’, our species’ impact on the oceans, the land and the atmosphere has become an inescapable feature of the Earth. This idea that humanity has forced a geological transition is capturing people’s attention not just because changes in epochs are rare. It is attracting notice because our species is gripped by the idea that we possess planetary powers. The significance of this goes beyond statistics documenting melting glaciers and shrinking species counts. It signals a new geological epoch, The Anthropocene. One of the…

Attention to our oceans please. Should we be worried?

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The ocean is constantly exchanging with the atmosphere. It stores and distributes large amounts of heat around the globe via ocean currents. The ocean plays a key role for the global climate. It controls how heat, carbon, nutrients and dissolved gases are exchanged between the upper and lower layers of the ocean. However, this regulatory mechanism is presently disturbed by global warming, consequence of the greenhouse effect. It is important to raise awareness of tipping points in the Earth system under human-induced climate change. Ocean heatwaves have led to mass coral bleaching and to the loss of half of the…

There is no pixie dust!

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The Earth System is an emcompassing planetary system that comprises the biosphere, i.e., the sum of all living biota and their interactions and feedbacks with the geosphere, including the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and upper lithosphere. Over its evolution, the earth system has been driven predominantly by astronomical and geophysical forces. However, in the last six decades or so, there is a large increase in the rate of growth of the anthropological causes. This recent trend is further highlighted when put against the remarkable stability of last ten millennia, the epoch that start with the end of the last glacial period,…

What’s after, what’s next

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We have difficulty accepting that society, economy, technology, and nature are deeply intertwined and co-evolving. This is leading to declining biosphere integrity, disrupting biophysical flows, climate change and the disruption of social foundations, frustrating an economic transformation, just to name a few. Another neglected item is the ongoing convergence between infotech, nanotech, biotech and cognitive sciences that could restructure not just economies and societies but our very bodies and minds. These aforementioned challenges are enormous in scale and complexity, and we will need to take equally enormous leaps in our imagination to meet them successfully. It cannot be stressed enough…