30 Days to CityLab Paris

Themes from the 2017 convening for urban leaders. Follow along as we count down to October 22 through 24, and visit CityLab.com to watch updates from the event via the live stream. Twitter hashtag: #CityLabParis.

One of the Greatest Threats to Our Lifespans Is Loneliness

What would society be like if health insurers and public bodies invested as much in encouraging social encounters as exercise and good diet?

A man sits on a bench in Bangkok.

In a Lonely City, Volunteer Listeners Are Here to Help

“Often, lonely people long to be noticed by another person who says, ‘I see you.’” That’s where Sidewalk Talk comes in.

A man walks his bicycle beside a train in Paris.

Breaking Down the Many Ways Europe's City-Dwellers Get to Work

One chart shows which cities do best when it comes to biking, walking, or taking public transit to work.

A Bright Idea to Revive a Neighborhood

The financial crisis brought (literally) darker times to parts of Athens. Now one neighborhood is fighting to bring light back to the streets.

Horned Larks from 1904 (top) and 1966 (bottom), The Field Museum.

How Soot-Covered Birds Narrate Pollution's Toxic Legacy

By analyzing collections at natural history museums, researchers revisited 135 years of industry.

This Is How to Do Guerrilla Bike Activism

In the Brazilian city of Fortaleza, the anonymous collective Massa Crítica pressured the government to construct hundreds of kilometers of bike lanes. But it wasn’t easy.

The Great Mobility Divide

Americans are moving less than ever, but that fact masks a deep divide between the affluent and the disadvantaged.

Obesity Thrives in the Suburbs

A U.K. study finds a clear connection between density and obesity—and even rural areas fare better than suburban ones.

The U.S. Metros Most at Risk from Automation

In Dalton, Georgia, more than two-thirds of jobs are at risk for automation, according to a new analysis.

Cities Want Super-Fast Wireless Internet, But on Their Terms

Mayors, state lawmakers, and carriers can’t agree on who gets to regulate the deployment of next-gen wireless technology—and it’s crucial for the future of smart cities.

A resident pushes wheelbarrow across a flooded street in the aftermath of Hurricane Gustav in New Orleans.

The Case for the Flood-Proof Lawn

New Orleans’ water infrastructure needs a lot of work. In the meantime, some residents are taking a new street-level approach to dealing with a deluge.

The Heterogeneous Future of Urban Mobility

The authors of Faster, Smarter, Greener talk about the technologies that will revolutionize how we get around cities.

Haze covering Big Ben

Wood-Burning Stoves Are Fouling London's Air

In nearly every corner of the city, particulate matter levels far exceed the limits set by the World Health Organization.

Building Community Through Better Street Lights

A new film highlights a pioneering lighting project in historic Cartagena.

Venture Capital Remains Highly Concentrated in Just a Few Cities

For all the talk of the “rise of the rest,” investment in high-tech startups is clustered in the Bay Area, and the New York- Boston-Washington Corridor.

The leaves on trees frame a woman who stands at the fence around the reservoir in Central Park in New York City.

How Should We Pay for Street Trees?

A new report argues that the urban canopy should be considered—and funded—as a part of a city’s public health infrastructure.

An illustration of a thumbprint.

The Safe Way to Build a Smart City

Any city with data initiatives faces the same questions: How much information should the government release, and in what form? Seattle’s proactive but cautious approach could provide the answer.

No, Urban Tech Startups Aren't Transforming All American Cities

If you live in a mid-sized city like Akron, the battles over Airbnb and Uber have likely had little impact on your life.

What Will Come of the Competition to Reinvent Paris?

Jean‑Louis Missika, deputy mayor of Paris, talks about his passion project—a design competition for underutilized spaces—and why he believes shared spaces are the future of the city.

A Master of Public Housing Gets His Due

The architect Neave Brown has won the RIBA Royal Gold Medal for the extraordinary public housing he designed in London in the 1960s and ’70s, setting a standard not matched since.  

For a Strong Economy, Focus on Inclusive Growth

In our increasingly unequal cities, inclusion is good for growth, and growth is good for inclusion. Two new reports show how it can be done.