IEMA Book Club – Happy City by Charles Montgomery

29th May 2020


This session discusses the book Happy City by Charles Montgomery and how cab leaving in highly populated cities can actually make us healthier, saner and happier people.


Over the last few weeks, we have seen life in cities change beyond all recognition. Less noise, less congestion, less pollution and even dolphins back in Venice. Despite social distancing measures, there are hundreds of examples of communities working together more closely to provide food, medicine and support for those in need. However, a global pandemic is far too high a price to pay to reduce environmental impacts and improve social cohesion. What if it was possible to design a city to make the residents happier – pandemic or not?

Journeying around the world from Copenhagen to Bogota, Charles Montgomery shows that leaving in highly populated cities can actually make us healthier, saner and happier people. We recognise that we should only be purchasing essential deliveries at this time so we would like to encourage you to purchase digital copies of this book where possible for you to use with e-readers or on phones or laptops.

In this book club webinar we were discussing such questions as:

  • Are large cities good or bad for sustainability?
  • Which city would you most like to live in, and why?
  • How can new technology make cities more sustainable?
  • What will the long term effect of Coronovirus be on city life?

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