Honours Programme

Elements of productive urban greening

Framed in context of a cooperation with the city of Almere and Floriade 2022, this research project deals with understanding the spatial conditions supporting productive green infrastructures and related green jobs in cities.

Amidst the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the European Commission wants to align the Biodiversity Strategy of the European Green Deal (EGD) with restoring local economies. The EGD points at the widely accepted benefits of green urban spaces, ranging from health, recreation, refuge to nature, and mitigation of climate change. More importantly, it points at how the extensive deployment of green infrastructure in urban and periurban areas has the potential to have a positive economic impact in cities: new related jobs can help tackle inequalities and ensure a just transition to climate neutrality.

In an urban setting, activities linked to rewilding, green infrastructure and nature-based solutions could include: plant production, conservation and management of spaces, biomass production, biochar, development of innovative technologies, urban agricultural and livestock production, and nature-related leisure, among others—each one with specific spatial requirements (including buildings and infrastructure).

Questions to touch upon in your project include: How do green infrastructure strategies in a given type of landscape relate to different kinds of work? What are the exact spatial implications and needs of such productive and care activities? How can those needs be integrated into an urban setting? For that, you will use a mixed methodology (literature review, interviews, fieldwork, analytical drawing) on a Dutch landscape type. Ultimately, the overall aim is to establish links between urban greening strategies, landscape and biotope types, productive activities, and spatial design. Both Urbanism and Landscape Architecture students are welcome to join.

This project consolidates research carried out in the Section of Urban Design around the future of production landscapes in the context of current technological and ecological transitions (e.g. ’Cities of Making’ and ‘Automated Landscapes’).