UCL Minds


UCL Future Cities

In this new series, Future Cities Podcast explores the complexity of urban living. We’ll be examining today’s most crucial topics and how technology, climate change, health and society all interconnect with the urban spaces of tomorrow.

Listen to cutting edge conversations from experts who ask what the future of our cities might be and how new research and applied innovation can help.

Series 1 - London

In this first six-part series, we’re looking at London and what the future holds for the city’s many communities. 

Tune in every Thursday for discussions on gentrification, city planning, and the effects of Brexit and coronavirus on the capital, plus much more.

Episode 6: Live Finale - From New York to Camden The High Line Effect 

For our live finale event, we hosted a fascinating debate with Professor Christoph Lindner, Dean of The Bartlett and editor of Deconstructing the High Line: Postindustrial Urbanism and the Rise of the Elevated Park; Simon Pitkeathley, CEO of Camden Town Unlimited and the Camden Highline; and Jodie Eastwood, CEO of London’s Knowledge Quarter, who explore how the New York ‘High Line effect’ might shape the future of Camden.

Using the learnings from the New York High Line, they discuss the impact this famous park has had on the city and people of New York, and ask whether tourism, gentrification and investment can or will benefit the local community.


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Episode 5: Learning and working in a future London

This week, we’re looking at knowledge, skills and jobs in a future London. How has the pandemic affected education, and what lessons can we take from it in the future? How can we continue to attract and retain talent in an era of virtual working, and how will increasing digitisation augment learning and social justice?

Join special guests Prof Allison Littlejohn (Professor and Director of the UCL Knowledge Lab, IOE), Lalage Clay (Director of Education and Talent at London & Partners) and Diana Beech (CEO at London Higher) as they discuss the opportunities and advantages that London has to offer for students, residents and employers, its history and influence… and its indefinable magic.

Access the transcript for Episode 5 here.

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Episode 4: Memory Maps of London

This episode is all about the capital’s memory maps and why we need to remember and preserve the past as we step into the future. We’ll be taking a look at several memory maps from around London and how these intersect with culture, gender, race and religion.

Tune in to special guests Leah Lovett (Research fellow at UCL’s Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis), Montaz Marche (UCL Alumna, PhD Student and Research Assistant for the City of Women Map), Lettice Kemp (former Head of Content for the visitlondon.com website) to find out more about the City of London Women project, the Memory Map of the Jewish East End and the Newham Youth Map plus much more.

Access the transcript for Episode 4 here.

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Episode 3: Is London truly a Smart City?

This week’s episode is all about Smart Cities – but what does that mean in reality? We are living and working in a city where technology is becoming increasingly embedded into the fabric of London. But is this technological freedom improving our lives or is consumer exploitation enslaving us? Should we be resisting or embracing urban technology?

Join the discussion with special guests Dr Sarah Wise and Prof Duncan Wilson from the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at The Bartlett, UCL's Faculty of the Built Environment, and Kulveer Ranger, UCL alumnus and an expert in digital transformation, and Senior Vice President of Strategy Communications for Atos UK&I.

Access the transcript for Episode 3 here.

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Episode 2: How gentrification has created a city of paradoxes

Gentrification has become synonymous with London. While being a system of development, gentrification has created a city of paradoxes. In this episode, we'll be examining how can a city like London contain such extreme divisions between wealth and poverty? Why do we keep building homes that no one can afford? Is it possible to do gentrification in a better, fairer way?

Listen to special guests Professor Christoph Lindner, Dean of The Bartlett, UCL’s Faculty of the Built Environment, Hannah Sender, Research Fellow at the UCL Institute of Global Prosperity and Thul Khan, Housing Solicitor at the UCL Integrated Legal Advice Clinic discuss this and more.

Access the transcript here

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Episode 1: Post-Pandemic, Post-Brexit London

With Prof Alan Thompson and Dr Jon Reades

What are the challenges facing London as it comes out of the pandemic and into a post-Brexit world?

Join Prof Alan Thompson, Pro-Vice-Provost for London, in conversation with Dr Jon Reades from The Bartlett, UCL’s Faculty of the Built Environment.

Access the transcript here

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Listen on Apple | Spotify 

This podcast is brought to you by UCL with special thanks to the university’s central Communications and Marketing team, the Office of the Vice-Provost Advancement, the Pro-Vice-Provost (London) Office, The Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment and UCL East.

For questions or inquiries, contact Stephanie Limuaco, Campaigns Manager.