4. October 2023 | Press releases:

How will people live in the city of the future? Conference #SdZ23": Research and actions for positive change

The city of the future will look different. The effects of climate change are already being felt with rising temperatures, droughts, heavy rainfall, forest fires and floods. But how can cities and metropolitan regions meet these challenges, play a pioneering role in climate and resource protection, and remain liveable at the same time? Researchers at Technische Universität Braunschweig are investigating these questions in the research focus “Future City” (“Stadt der Zukunft” (SdZ)) and invite all those interested to take part in research and action at the public conference #SdZ23 on 11 and 12 October. In addition to the scientific discourse, there will be a varied programme with exhibitions, information stands, lectures, a stage programme, sustainable food from the region and live music.

“The transformation of the city is the key to shaping a world that remains worth living in: adapting to what can no longer be changed and doing quickly what needs to be changed now. Science must build even stronger bridges to people’s everyday lives, culture and society. We still have a lot of translating to do, so that scientific knowledge also leads to people being able to imagine the different futures that are still possible, and wanting to participate in them – so that sustainable change can succeed,” say the co-spokespersons of the research priority, Professor Vanessa Carlow and Professor Eckart Voigts. “During these days here in Braunschweig, we want to explain, develop and test the city of the future with its problems, but also its immense potential.

From urban visions for Braunschweig, to sustainable agriculture, to the Smart City

That is why eight science-driven sessions from “Good Ways” to “Living with Water” and a closing discussion with renowned climate researcher Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research will encourage interdisciplinary dialogue on both days. In addition, conference visitors can experience “actions for positive change” on 11 October – from liveable and productive cities to urban mobility, food rescue, plant exchanges and Smart Cities to sustainable agriculture. The event will start at 9 a.m. at the Architekturhochhaus on Mühlenpfordtstraße with an open-air breakfast based on the principle of “everyone bringing something”.

Well fortified, the various “actions” then begin, such as the exhibition by “spaces4future”. The initiative presents some of its realutopias for NewBrunswick, such as the innovative green tangent leading from the harbour to the Bahnstadt, or ideas for the conversion of the empty department stores. In a performative lecture, Juliana Hutai will show the connection between social and ecological housing issues. She wants the audience to think together: How do we want to use urban spaces and how do we want to live together in the future?

Bringing science to life

In the foyer of the Mühlenpfordt-Hochhaus, the Institute for Sustainable Urbanism shows how cities are preparing for the future and becoming more sustainable with the exhibition “Lebenswerte Stadt – 28 x Stadtentwicklung in Dänemark” (“Livable City – 28 x Urban Development in Denmark”) by the Royal Danish Embassy, Berlin. The exhibition presents examples of successful and forward-looking urban development. The focus is on projects in small and medium-sized cities.

Insights into the design of Braunschweig’s largest inner-city potential area, “Bahnstadt Braunschweig”, will be provided in a lecture on stage. In addition, TU Braunschweig’s Institute for Urban Design will present the Co_Living Campus, the science quarter to be built on the North Campus. Other researchers at TU Braunschweig will bring their science to life in a very tangible way: in front of the high-rise building on Mühlenpfordtstraße, visitors can take a look at the ground themselves using the geo-radar equipment of the geophysicists. At another stand, visitors can find out how alive our urban waters are. And Professor Jan Büchsenschuss from the Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences will explain why the city of the future begins on the sofa in the evening.

Live music at the end of the day

The Landvolk Braunschweig and the initiative “Eure Landwirte – Echt grün” (Your Farmers – Really Green) are discussing modern agriculture and possible solutions for a sustainable, environmentally friendly use of natural resources. A vertical exhibition in the high-rise building encourages all visitors to immerse themselves in the landscape and urban patterns left behind by urbanisation and to guess which cities might be involved in the selection. The climb to the twelfth floor is not without its rewards.

The conference will also offer a number of opportunities to exchange ideas and talk to researchers from TU Braunschweig.

The first day of the conference will end as it began: together in the open air in the city. From 17:00, thanks to the support of the Institute for Music and Music Education, the stage will offer a varied programme of different musical styles and bands: with the Niklas Wohlt Trio, Esra Salcan, Post-Line and New SoulGeneration Braunschweig.

Conference #SdZ23

11 October, 09.00 – 22.00
12 October, 09:00 to 15:30 (scientific sessions only)
Mühlenpfordtstr. 23, 381016 Braunschweig

The conference is free of charge. Registration is not required for the supporting programme of activities, project presentations, lectures and live music.

Programme: https://sdz-konferenz.de/

About the research focus “Future City”

The conference #SdZ23 is organised by the research focus “Future City” of TU Braunschweig. As one of four thematic focuses, “Future City” has been investigating since 2015 how cities can continue to meet the needs of their inhabitants in the face of the far-reaching challenges of a globalised world, advancing urbanisation, dwindling resources and climate change. Researchers are looking beyond physical aspects and city boundaries, integrating historical, literary, philosophical, social and environmental themes.