Designing for Future Uncertainties: Comparative Studies of Two Adaptive Strategies in Urban Design in New York and Sweden

Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


The world has always been exposed to stimuli and change. Due to urbanization and globalization these stimuli have an increasing impact on a larger scale. The magnitude and characteristics of these stimuli in the future are, to a large extent, unknown. As a direct result of globalization and urbanization, the contemporary cities are increasingly vulnerable to stimuli such as climate change and socio-economic risks, creating the immediate and constant necessity to design and re-design cities in order to be adaptive to future change. The paper identifies design parameters that can inform contemporary design for an increased adaptive capacity. Through a focused comparison of two adaptive strategies in urban design, located in New York and Sweden, design parameters can be analyzed. The paper will strengthen the argument for developing an alternate and better informed design process to increase adaptiveness; resulting in minimization of the devastating impact of future stimuli, and by doing so increasing the sustainability of cities through architecture and urban design.


Adaptive capacity Architecture Climate change adaptation Design parameter Future uncertainties Public space Social sustainability Transformation Urban design 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.White Arkitekter ABStockholmSweden

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