Opening Remarks by Sarah Whiting, Dean, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Loreta Castro Reguera, Professor, UNAM Mexico; Design Director, Taller Capital, Mexico; Visiting Scholar in Landscape Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design
John Fernandez, Professor, MIT; Director, MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative; Director, Urban Metabolism Group
Jim Matheson, Founder and principal, Flybridge Ventures; Chairman and CEO, Oasys Water; Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship, Harvard Business School
Joyce Coffee Founder and President, Climate Resilience Consulting
Efosa Ojomo, Global Prosperity Lead, Clayton Christen Institute for Disruptive Innovation
Moderated by John Macomber, Senior Lecturer in Finance, Harvard Business School; Faculty Chair, HBS Africa Research Center
The future of cities is impacted by water in two main manifestations: too much water (notably flooding and sea rise) or not enough water (leading to drought, extreme heat, and increased fire risk). Mature cities in developed economies cope with these stressors one way, while fast growing cities in emerging economies have quite different tools to anticipate and deal with perils. For example, sea rise issues in Jakarta and Lagos are considered differently than in Miami or Amsterdam; drought and heat is experienced one way in Beijing or Mexico City than in Los Angeles, subject to terrifying wildfires.
All of these world cities, home to hundreds of millions of people, face water issues in the next decades. The world is seeing increasing migration as people move to cities for economic, political, or climate reasons. Will there also be necessary migration away from the coastal cities that, paradoxically, also provide so much economic opportunity? How will the research of Harvard scientists, the education of students, and the career and location choices of graduates be impacted? Join us to learn the foundational issues and to discuss the path forward.
Presented as part of Harvard Worldwide Week in collaboration with the Vice Provost for International Affairs, HBS Global Initiative, and Graduate School of Design