Global conversations are much more like symphonies than dialogues. Rather than exchanges between two players, they are a complex and dynamic blend of voices, layers, volumes, and interactions.
For the past two years, the BMW Guggenheim Lab has had the privilege of sitting in the orchestra pit among some of the world’s most brilliant and exciting thinkers and doers in urbanism. Over the course of two years and three cities, the Lab took part in a conversation that is more vibrant and lively today than it has ever been about the future of our cities. Sometimes the Lab took the lead in that conversation. Sometimes it followed it. Sometimes it challenged it, dug in, and got its hands dirty in it, or sometimes it simply stayed quiet and listened carefully. But as the Lab project concludes this fall with a final exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, there is one thing that is clear: that symphony of conversation is continuing around the world, getting louder and richer by the day, and we all need to be a part of it.
That’s why, here on Lab | Log, we are dedicating a series of posts called “TBC” (To Be Continued) to uncovering the score to those conversations—to where, why, how, and with whom they are continuing around the world, and how we can best follow, listen in, engage, and be a part of them going forward.
To do so, we’ve broken things down into ten large, overarching themes that encompass the majority of topics dealt with throughout the course of the Lab. Among them are Population Distribution: Density, Urban Migration, and Suburbanization; Participation and Collaboration; Public Space and Ownership; Digital Technology; Urban Esthetics and Perception; Privacy; Hacking the City; Emotional Cityness: Happiness, Well-Being, Trust, and Altruism; Gentrification and Affordability; and Bridging the Formal and Informal Divide.
We’ll talk to new and old friends embedded in these issues to get their thoughts on what’s coming next in the global conversation, where it needs to head, and how we can be a part of it. We’ll throw out our own ideas and resources, and ask you, our wonderful readers, to help us collect more with your own suggestions. We hope you’ll stay tuned, read along, and share your thoughts with us.