Georgescu: Energy, cities and the control of complex systems

Earlier this month Matei Georgescu, assistant professor of geography, joined 21 other scientists from around the world to participate in a workshop held at Ettore Majorana Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture, an Italy-based institute that brings research leaders together to exchange ideas.  The objective of the workshop was to explore the applications of complex network theory to infrastructure and social systems, especially as applied to cities and energy, and to identify limitations and priorities for research.  

Each of the 22 invited participants, who included researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Northwestern University, the University of Massachusetts in the US as well as academic institutions and companies in12 other countries, gave a presentation to the group.

Georgescu’s talk advocated for a broad look at sustainable urban expansion, that includes an evaluation of tradeoffs to strategies such as cool and green roofs, and a comprehensive assessment that considers impacts on energy, health and air quality.   His talk was entitled “Shaping the Cities of Tomorrow: Integrating Local Adaptation within an Environmental and Energy Framework.”

The workshop was part of the Majorana Centre’s 47th session of International Seminars on Planetary Emergencies, and took place May 12-14, 2014 at the centre’s site in Erice, Italy.