Programme on Urban Environmental Sustainability

Programme Lead: Dr Harvey Neo (LKYCIC, SUTD)

Cities require immense resources to be viable. Accelerated urbanisation often leads to urban environmental problems that worsen the quality of life of urban residents. The Urban Environmental Sustainability (UES) programme of LKYCIC aims to map out the urban environmental challenges confronting ever-expanding cities and explore ways to mitigate these challenges. The UES programme is multi-disciplinary but oriented towards the social sciences and policy frameworks.

The programme is particularly interested in two interrelated questions. First, how are natural resources (such as energy) “consumed” in cities and how can consumers adopt sustainable practices through technological/design, policy and behavioural interventions. Second, besides looking at discrete resources, it will adopt a system-wide perspective by evaluating how large-scale infrastructural planning and design (such as ecological cities) can strengthen urban sustainability.

The UES research programme is currently developing the following research projects:

  1. Ecological cities and urban sustainability in China
  2. Thermal comfort in Singapore: policy and behavioural interventions
  3. The Singapore water story: transnationalism, urban sustainability and the making of a hydraulic nation