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Cities and Regions: The Urban Sustainability, Planning, Pedagogy, and Technology Nexus

By Reza Banai

Two developing strands of a multidisciplinary literature provided an impetus for this paper: 1) the emergence of new regionalism, new urbanism, and smart codes that inform urban planning and design principles and practices for environmental sustainability, and 2) the diffusion of telecommunication and multi-media technologies that facilitate implementation of pedagogic principles in the “classroom.” The emerging urban planning and design paradigms anchor environmental sustainability issues firmly in place and space with an emphasis on the physical form of cities and regions, which, due to induced vehicular travel, is linked to greenhouse gases with consequences for climate change. Innovations that enhance learning in the classroom or the community increasingly embed and diffuse telecommunication and multimedia technologies. The intersections of urban sustainability, planning, pedagogy, and technology are briefly reviewed in this paper. It turns out that urban planning and design paradigms—particularly those with an emphasis on systemic knowledge, holistic views of both the natural and built environments, collaboration, communication, and reflective practice—synergize with environmental sustainability goals. Furthermore, these very features are ingredients for effective education for urban sustainability, particularly in conjunction with advanced telecommunication and multimedia technologies.

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Greening A Digital Media Culture Course: A Field Report

By Antonio Lopez

As a professor of undergraduate media studies, I have attempted to bridge media education and ecoliteracy by developing an experimental media education approach called Ecomedia Literacy. The framework attempts to balance the strengths of media studies with the concerns of education for sustainability. This paper documents a specific case study in which I introduced sustainability themes into an undergraduate digital technology and culture course by using the Ecomedia Literacy framework.

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Who is TED, and Why Can’t I Talk for More Than 18 Minutes at a Time?

By Thatcher Bohrman

The TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) website brings videos of world-class TED conference talks to everyone’s finger-tips. Something about the website gets us hooked, and the daily inspiration for ourselves, and our students, keeps us coming back for more.

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