Actionable Research

Should city research be led by cities?

In this urban century, the ability to meet global sustainable development goals is even more compounded in our growing cities. Many argue that investment in innovation is key to solving the challenges of accommodating more people, in an equitable manner, in a climate change impacted world. Yet the outcomes sought by urban research and innovation are often not defined by those setting the policy direction or making decisions in cities.

There is a missing link between the knowledge generated by urban academia and the decisions being made on the ground. In an effort to drive more informed cities, and evidence-based decisions to meet the urgent needs of our growing cities, the Connected Cities Lab is conducting research with a range of partners in cities, city networks, academia and industry to understand how we better connect urban research and innovation with decisions being made in and about cities – at all levels of government.

As part of this program of works, the Connected Cities Lab is leading or is involved in a series of workshops with multidisciplinary and multi-institutional global partners investigating this interface of policy, practice and research. Questions include how could the methods in which city data is generated be designed to allow far greater transfer of knowledge between and to cities? And would a co-designed data collection process enable city research to be more actionable and impactful?

    Project contact

    • Cathy Oke
      Cathy Oke, Enterprise Senior Fellow in Informed Cities