Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Urban studies (Planning and development)

Publication Details

Futures Academy, Technological University Dublin. 2006.


This paper argues that urban planners and policy-makers lack an effective future-oriented approach enabling them to comprehend current complexity, anticipate impending change and shape a preferred future condition. In doing so it: - reviews the performance of contemporary city planning; - examines the need to chart and navigate the city technosphere by reference to city capital; - explores ways in which planning can benefit from a futures studies approach; - describes generally how futures-oriented thinking can produce effective city prospective; and, - poses specifically a number of questions regarding the concept of the intelligent city’. The paper concludes by calling for the formulation of a Unified Theory for Sustainable Cities by reference to Gaia and the application of futures-oriented technology assessment.