Kathrin Golda-Pongratz advocates a more sustainable urban planning model in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

The UIC Barcelona School of Architecture lecturer recently participated in the annual debate held by the Academia Europaea-Barcelona Knowledge Hub

Cities play a vital role in the fight against climate change and in the prevention and control of pandemics such as the one we are currently experiencing, caused by the COVID-19 virus. This is the main premise defended by UIC Barcelona School of Architecture lecturer, Kathrin Golda Pongratz, who on 19 January took part in the “Disputatio of Barcelona 2020. Cities, Climate and Pandemics: Reflections from Urban Studies and Environmental Economics”. This event is organised by Academia Europaea-Barcelona Knowledge Hub

The event, held online this year, was organised by professor Alexander Fidora, a full professor in the Department of Ancient and Medieval Studies at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Environmental economist Jeroen van den Bergh, who is an ICREA researcher at the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA) at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, also participated in this debate alongside lecturer Kathrin Golda-Pongratz.  

The session focused on the key role cities play in climate change mitigation and the control of pandemics such as the current one, which has altered the daily lives of the world’s population beyond recognition. The need for a paradigm shift at all levels of society, based on the principles of resilience and sustainability, has therefore become absolutely clear. The aim behind this initiative was to place the debate on urban planning, climate change and pandemics at the heart of the national public agenda, in order to “begin looking for the tools necessary to address the challenges these issues create for citizens at both a local and a global level”, according to the organisation. 

Picture by: Herr Bohn

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