A historical view on the development of the sustainable city. Strategies of sustainability in Europe
Cities play a definitive crucial role in the on-going discourse on sustainability, due to the fact that more than half of the world’s population is living in urban agglomerations, causing a concomitant concentration of energy use and refuse production. However, in spite of its current urgency, the ideal of a sustainable city is not a new concept; it has a long history built on a variety of ideas on the improvement of the urban environment, which have been rethought and revised over the course of the last century.
In fact, many of the considerations on the improvement of the urban environment that mark today’s ideas on sustainable urban design can already be found in the urban development tracts and political, philosophical and social reform texts in medical, economic or political treatises of past centuries. The arguments of today’s sustainability debate, namely, the permanence of structure, stability of the substance, and social balance, as well as providing construction material, ground sealing, water supply, drainage, ventilation, hygiene, garbage removal, traffic, greening, and land and energy needs will be the focuses of this session. The section is intended to be of interest to researchers from the historical and cultural disciplines, sociology, the political sciences as well as the natural and technical sciences.

11th International Conference on Urban History. Cities & Societies in Comparative Perspective
Dr. Katia Frey, ETH Zurich, Institute for History and Theory of Architecture (gta)
Dr. Eliana Perotti, ETH Zurich, Institute for History and Theory of Architecture (gta)
Dr. Ruth Hanisch, Technische Universität Dortmund

All abstracts (maximum 500 words) should be submitted by October 1, 2011 per online paper proposal form at:

For more information, please visit the website of the conference on
Dr. Katia Frey, Dr. Eliana Perotti
ETH Zurich, Geschichte des Städtebaus
Wolfgang Pauli Strasse 15, CH-8093 Zurich, Switzerland
Phone +41 44 633 29 34
Visit the website at
Date: 2011-07-05