Strategies of Ecosystem Development

Source i09: Photos of Shanghai's cityscape, with a 26 year gap. Read more about it here. Truly remarkable.

Source i09: Photos of Shanghai’s cityscape, with a 26 year gap. Read more about it here. Truly remarkable.

The amazing image above shows how much can happen in a city over 26 years. We know cities are growing at amazing rates, but these images are poor at capturing any tensions of over stretched infrastructure that struggles to keep pace. Slow development is never desirable in urban growth, but it is hard not to see dystopic visuals of urban decay as the cities struggle to pay their own environmental bills.

Conversations about ecosystem development as a strategy for solving human environmental crises are clearly not new. In a paper from 1969 recently sent to me by Bruce Hinds there is a rich account of the previous thinking and inspiration that has as of yet translated into human innovation. Some of the language and concepts in the paper are clearly out of date, as most of the resilience theory work and C.S. Hollings was not yet integrated, but at the core there are some really key concepts.

Core Trends of Ecosystem Succession

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An Evolving Understanding of Urban Ecology

Presentation for the Urban Ecologies Conference in Toronto

Presentation for the Urban Ecologies Conference in Toronto

At the Urban Ecologies conference in Toronto on June 20 – 21, I presented with Bruce Hinds and Ian Clarke on Information and Complexity in Urban Ecology.

Sponsored by Autodesk, our research has focussed on biology and ecology as sources of inspiration for building science. As software becomes increasingly sophisticated in gathering and processing data, there is tension on how this will influence the design and management of buildings. If any information can be collected, what should be collected, and what is the purpose?

In our short review presentation we outlined our own evolution of inspiration and how we see it impacting the built environment.

Learning from specific organisms has been the base line for most of the practices of sustainability and biomimicry.

Learning from specific organisms has been the base line for most of the practices of sustainability and biomimicry.

Organism – Barrel Cactus

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Urban Ecosystem Succession

Urban Ecology Workshop Presentation - Carl Bruce Jamie 2013

Link to the presentation for Urban Ecology Workshop at OCAD University, June 21 2013

For today’s workshop at the Urban Ecologies Conference at OCAD University, we are running a workshop on Ecosystem Succession and Urban Ecology. More information will be coming, but here is the presentation as a resource for the participants of the workshop:

Urban Ecosystem Succession