Past Program

Sep 26 - Sep 30, 2013

Sustainability and the City: America and the Urban World Salzburg Seminar American Studies Association (SSASA)


By the year 2060, 70% of the world's population will live in cities, cities where goods and ideas are exchanged, where the arts thrive and people from different races, backgrounds, religions and values mix. They are financial, business, political and cultural centers, places of expanding possibilities and the entry point of foreign influences. Yet they are also sites of dereliction, crime and political corruption. Today, while some cities are dynamic, attractive and transitioning, a number of cities are in a state of decay and decline.

This 11th Salzburg Seminar American Studies Association Symposium willfocus on the social, cultural, economic, and political role that cities play in the lives of their inhabitants, their culture and the world. It will draw on a range of disciplines to examine the future of the city in America, but will also target cities around the world. The focus will be on common issues, inter-related relationships and future trends, as participants examine the dynamics that constitute the social and cultural dimensions of the modern global city. Participants will be American Studies academics, urban sociologists, urban planners, architects and others interested in the study of the city.

Questions that participants will explore include:

  • What is the significance of urban living to those in the rapidly growing American, Asian, and other great cities?
  • Are global cities extraterritorial, sharing more with one another than with the country in which they are situated?
  • What role does the city play in shaping the lives, values, attitudes, and well-being of those who live in them?
  • How attuned to human needs and desires are they?
  • What is the role of the architect and planner in the future of cities?
  • How can cities become innovators in sustainability?

The program starts at 16:00 on 26 September. There is no progam on 30 September, so depature is at any time.