New book on children and sustainable urbanism

A new book, Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments, published this month by Routledge, takes an interdisciplinary approach to the study of how sustainable urban developments affect children and young people.

Routledge this month publishes Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments – New Urbanisms, New Citizens by Pia Christensen, Sophie Hadfield-Hill, John Horton and Peter Kraftl*. Recognising, that ‘urban living has dramatically changed over the past generation, refashioning children’s relationships with the towns and cities in which they live’, the publisher describes the book as follows:

‘Focusing on the global shift in urban planning towards sustainable urbanism – from master planned ‘sustainable communities’, to the green retrofitting of existing urban environments – Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments offers a critical analysis of the challenges, tensions and opportunities for children and young people living in these environments.

Crucial role of children

‘Drawing upon original data, Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments demonstrates how the needs, interests and participation of children and young people often remain inferior to the design, planning and local politics of new urban communities. Considering children from their crucial role as residents engaging and contributing to the vitalities of their community, to their role as consumers using and understanding sustainable design features, the book critically discusses the prospects of future inclusion of children and young people as a social group in sustainable urbanism.

The needs, interests and participation of children and young people often remain inferior to the design, planning and local politics of new urban communities

‘Truly interdisciplinary, Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments forms an original theoretical and empirical contribution to the understanding of the everyday lives of children and young people and will appeal to academics and students in the fields of education, childhood studies, sociology, anthropology, human geography and urban studies, as well as policy-makers, architects, urban planners and other professionals working on sustainable urban designs’.

Adrian Voce

Photo: Dave n Laura

*Peter Kraftl was a plenary speaker at the Child in the City international seminar on Children’s Play in the Urban Environment in London last month. 



Children Living in Sustainable Built Environments – New Urbanisms, New Citizens by Pia Christensen, Sophie Hadfield-Hill, John Horton and Peter Kraftl is published by Routledge.

Author: Adrian Voce

President of the European Network for Child Friendly Cities

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