The cities of tomorrow: the European cities today? an analysis to Qiu Baoxing's June 27 presentation

In his June 27th "self-organized city and micr-circulation", the vice minister of MoHURD Qiu Baoxing citied many European cases as examples for the Chinese cities in self-transforming, to name it: on page 37, the "European style major's authority in town and cities" is cited as example for governance reform; on page 36, 'booming urban agriculture in Europe" is cited; on page 35 the kind of "Micro--urban medical system" Qiu discribed is very much like then French system; on page 30, micro-transportation part, the public bicyle system illustrated is very much like the Paris and Lyon velib sysem; the page 29 cited European cities as outstanding example for "micro-renewing"; on page 27 to illustrate Micro-eco-impact, the Swedish "City of Tomorrow" in Malmo is illustrated.

In the first part philosophical argument part, Qiu highlighted five different core features of self-organization and imposed-organization: organic/unorganic, discontinous evolution/failed continous plan, uncertainty/egoist certainty, unforeeable/unrealistic strict forseeable.

Thought these arguments around "city as a self-organization" sounds revolutionary for some Chinese minds, but it is found as core philosophy in some European strategic planning documents. For example, the <Randstad 2040> a strategic spatial structure planning documents for the Randstad conurbation published by Dutch Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment in 2008.

Let's look into an abstract from this Randstad 2040 document which strongly echoes the "self-organization" philosophy in Qiu's context.

"The future will always be uncertain. It is impossible for the government to give an exhaustive prediction of what the Randstad will look like in 2040, and it has no intention of doing so. Instead, robust and flexible choices have been made. The choices are robust in the sense that they can be expected to add value even in the event of unforeseen circumstances and
trends, and flexible in that between now and 2040 there must always be scope for applying new insights and innovations in interpreting them."

Qiu's "self-organized city and micr-circulation" marks a watershed turning point in the grand Chinese urbanization. In the new era, European cities become the new examples for the coming Chinese cities and transformation of the existing Chinese cities.


Posted by fiona liu / 11.4 years ago / 6722 hits