Pictet Report

Communal spaces for greater sustainability

Photographic artist Simon Roberts says that cities have gradually opened up more of their private land for public use, driven by the noblesse oblige of sovereigns, then philanthropic industrialists, and now city-dwellers demanding more sustainable cities. Until the 17th century, urban parks in Europe were private land – exclusively owned and used by royalty, the […]

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    Diverse opportunities for investors

    Investment in the transition to clean energy is being driven by innovation, the improved economics of renewables and energy storage, health concerns about rising air pollution, and government regulation to reduce energy consumption and emission. It was in 2007 that Pictet launched a strategy that focused on renewable energy which was then fashionable but not […]

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      Sustainable offices for the cities of the future

      An office building in Amsterdam has been designed as a zero-carbonbuilding that occasionally generates more power than it consumes and uses a host of smart technologies to create adaptable and intelligent workspaces. Just under a third of the world’s energy is consumed by buildings that are responsible for about a fifth of global greenhouse gas […]

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        Freeing agriculture from climate slavery

        Research at MIT’s Media Lab is analysing the climates and environmental conditions that produce the most tasty and nutritious foodstuffs, with the aim of replicating them anywhere in the world – including in fast-growing cities. The Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is not an obvious place to launch a revolution in agriculture. […]

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          Interview with Peter Frankopan

          The eminent Oxford historian says that there is nothing new about globalisation, which began as much as 3,000 years ago. A key moment was when Alexander the Great’s conquests connected three continents and opened trading routes between the great cities of antiquity. What was the role of Alexander the Great in globalisation? His conquests between […]

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            Building a smart and equitable city

            When Bill de Blasio was elected New York’s mayor in 2013, he launched the Mayor’s Office of Technology and Innovation to raise the quality of the city’s infrastructure, education system and workforce for the digital era. The Office’s mission statement was to deploy digital technologies to improve the city’s services, but also to use them […]

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              Singapore grows sky-high greens

              An engineer has devised a vertical farming system to grow green vegetables for the densely populated city-state, using very little water or energy and producing ten times the output per hectare of traditional cultivation methods. As the world’s population continues to grow and move into urban areas, feeding people in cities is recognised as a […]

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                The future of cities

                The digital revolution has launched a wave of innovation in the world’s cities, says MIT’s Carlo Ratti, providing opportunities to improve urban mobility and create better workspaces for the changing nature of work. These are exciting times for cities, according to Carlo Ratti, Director of MIT’s Senseable City Lab and co-founder of Carlo Ratti Associati […]

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                  Endless power for cities from the oceans

                  Two entrepreneurs have developed a simple technology that can generate renewable energy from ocean waves at a price that is competitive with solar power – attracting interest from cities all over the world. More than a billion people live without electricity, mostly in developing countries. Their cities often have access to electricity, but emissions from […]

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                    The role of cities in the global economy

                    The former Executive Director of the UN Human Settlements Programme describes the reasons why more than half the world’s population has moved into cities and the challenges that need to be confronted to reap the benefits. For almost all of human history, people have lived in small towns, villages or the countryside. But the proportion […]

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