TUDLab Research Projects Urbanism and Inclusion

Urbanism and Inclusion: Designing for the Tropics

As recognised in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and UN-Habitat’s New Urban Agenda (NUA), sustainable and inclusive urbanism is critical to future planetary prosperity.

As much as 95% of future urban expansion over the coming decade is expected to take place within the Global South. This rural-urban transition presents both enormous challenges opportunities for poverty alleviation and socio-economic development. Rapid urbanisation is bringing dramatic socio-economic upheaval and new forms of inclusion and exclusion. More than 800 million people worldwide live in slum settlements and this figure is projected to increase in coming years.

In high-income countries, cities town and suburbs also present some of the greatest sustainability challenges of the century. Access to affordable housing, air quality, provision of public spaces including urban green space, transportation, displacement and water management are all pertinent issues. How to create and cultivate sustainable and inclusive urban environments that enhance wellbeing and liveability, while also contributing positively to local, national and global socio-economic systems, is an urgent and decisive challenge.

This research stream employs a multidisciplinary and mixed-methods approach to explore the politics, practices and theories of  urban design, inclusion and sustainability. Through comparative analyses across the Tropical world, it seeks to deliver applied and theoretical insights that will contribute to the realisation of the UN SDGs and NUA. In line with this mission, JCU’s TUDLab was officially launched at the 2018 Ninth Session Of The World Urban Forum in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Research team: Kearrin Sims, Simona Azzali, Colin Macgregor, Lisa Law