Laura van Veenendaal, International Social Science Council

In November 2014, 20 early career social scientists from all over the world and from a wide range of academic disciplines met in Taipei, Taiwan, for a seminar on sustainable urbanization. They were there as part of the World Social Science Fellows Programme of the International Social Science Council (ISSC), to push forward the limits of knowledge on sustainable urbanization and make plans to keep doing so after the seminar. This seminar was the third of a series on sustainable urbanization, each bringing together 20 early career social scientists from around the world.

This book of blogs is inspired by discussions in Taipei. It curates over 80 contributions, from Fellows that took part in the seminar, and from others. The contributions showcase comments, reseach results, and thoughts on sustainable urbanization. They are often innovative, provocative, thought-provoking, exciting. We believe that this book shows the richness of the research currently undertaken by an emerging generation of social scientists tackling one of the most pressing challenges of our times, sustainable cities.

The ISSC is proud that this volume started at one of its World Social Science Fellows seminars, and thanks Fellow Jenna Condie for having initiated the project.

Working closely with us on the organization of this series of seminars were the former International Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Programme (IHDP, now part of Future Earth) and the Comparative Research Programme on Poverty (CROP). We also wish to thank our generous hosts, the National Taipei University and the Integrated Research on Disaster Risk Programme’s International Center of Excellence, with the support of Academia Sinica. The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) is the generous supporter of the World Social Science Fellows Programme as a whole.

This book is now out in the world and we hope that it is only the start of something bigger. Please enjoy, reflect, nod your head in agreement or violently disagree with any or all of the contributions it contains and then share. Share (twitter hashtag #ISSCBookofBlogs) and keep this dialogue on sustainable urbanization from a social science perspective moving forward.




Laura van Veenendaal 

World Social Science Fellows Programme manager

IMG_9979 copyLaura manages the ISSC’s World Social Science Fellows programme which aims to help build the next generation of social science leaders. Before joining the ISSC in January 2012, Laura worked as a policy officer and manager at the University of Utrecht and as a policy officer for the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. She lives in Amsterdam and divides her working life between there and Paris.

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