This initiative investigates advances in the sciences, engineering, business, architecture, design, and law to ensure smart, equitable, sustainable, and healthy cities. Topics include hard and soft infrastructure; digital technologies; transportation systems; clean, sustainable, and secure energy storage and distribution; climate change resilience; efficient and reliable water systems; landscapes and ecology; urban agriculture; financial systems; and security. The complexity of these issues requires multidisciplinary efforts that address the human factors, social issues, and public policy and management, with the goal of achieving positive social impacts.
A pair of Illinois Tech professors are aiming to develop an artificial leaf-based façade cladding for use in urban buildings that can act as a sponge to absorb carbon dioxide in the air, and cut carbon emissions in cities.
“We can make the future power grid more stable and more sustainable by operating power electronic converters, which interface renewables, storage systems, and flexible loads with the grid as virtual synchronous machines."
“What this research shows is that we can’t just say that in order to save the planet and reduce our carbon emissions we need to eat less beef. We have to be more nuanced and understand who’s eating more beef and why.”
“We want to know how we can share design with communities and work with communities using design practices and methods. Developing cooperative approaches like this will advance design as a whole.”
Illinois Tech faculty members discuss their own work and look at the role that buildings and cities play in climate change during this episode of the university's podcast, Curiosity Unplugged.
Professor Ron Henderson, director of the Landscape Architecture and Urbanism program, is leading a team of botanical experts in a project to restore some of the oldest cherry trees—estimated at 70 to 80 years in age—at the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, D.C.