Ted Radio Hour

For centuries, cities have been bringing people together. Now, for the first time in history, more than half the world's population lives in cities. What draws people to them? What changes when we live closer together? And how can cities offer humanity its best hope for a sustainable future? A number of TED speakers investigate the future of our urban zones.

HOST: Alison Stewart

Stewart Brand says that history has been defined by what happens in cities such as London and Paris and New York. But now that the largest cities are in the developing world, what does that mean for the present?

Robert Neuwirth, author of "Shadow Cities," finds the world's squatter communities-- where a billion people now make their homes -- to be thriving centers of ingenuity and innovation. He takes us on a tour.

Architect Ellen Dunham-Jones fires the starting shot for the next 50 years' big sustainable design project: retrofitting suburbia. And theoretical physicist Geoffrey West shows how a deeper look at the world's urban environments yields surprising finds in the search for a sustainable future.


Stewart Brand, Robert Neuwirth and Ellen Dunham-Jones

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