Collaboration, Networks, and Partnerships

The Case of the South Park Bridge: Infrastructure Concerns and Community Resilience in Seattle

On a Tuesday evening in April 2010, South Park residents and local business owners gathered at the local Machinists Union Hall to hear King County representatives make a surprising and disheartening announcement: the South Park Bridge would close. The bridge was the main link between the largely low-income and industrial neighborhood of South Park and downtown Seattle, and supported traffic flow onto the main retail corridor in South Park. This traffic provided much of the customer base on which the small businesses depended almost entirely.

Another Cheating Scandal—But This Time It's Not The Students

In March 2015, Newpoint High School, one of the high-performing charter schools in Escambia County, Florida, suddenly found itself at the heart of a real scandal when the School District announced publically that it appeared there was a possibility that school administrators had pressured teachers to falsify attendance records, delete overdue assignments, give answers to tests, and change grades in order to ensure that Newpoint seniors would advance to graduation. And the suggestion was that this was only the tip of the iceberg.

Defining Sustainability in the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy

Chief Minister Taib has set in place a massive sustainable dam project (SCORE) to increase energy production throughout Malaysia and develop Sarawak’s economy by bringing foreign industrial investment to the area. The SCORE project dams have been qualified as sustainable by the International Hydropower Association’s (IHA) Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Forum, and construction on the Murum Dam, the third of a potential 12 dams, was completed in 2013.

Kigali, Rwanda: Urban Agriculture for Food Security?

This case evaluates the premade decision of the Kigali City Council (KCC) to incorporate urban agriculture into the city’s long-term development agenda, as the key tool to address the problem of food security. A land-scarce country characterized by a predominantly rural population, Rwanda has a history of unsustainable approaches to food security, exacerbated by the collapse of the coffee industry in the 1980s and the genocide in the 1990s. After the genocide, international donors swept in to rebuild the war-torn country, which included projects designed to combat food insecurity.

Cities in Flux: Urban Redensification in Detroit and Guangzhou

A shrinking Detroit and an expanding Guangzhou shape this case, which aims to introduce readers to the nuances of population density and the importance of redensification in sustainable urban planning. Redensification policies in these cities offer a novel way of thinking about how to distribute populations and jobs to optimize public services and a city’s quality of life.

Unconventional Growth: Addressing Urban Development Challenges in a 21st Century Boomtown

Creating an environment for sustainable growth in a boomtown has been unsuccessful throughout history. Oil companies—big and small—dedicate a tremendous amount of resources to the extraction process and are beholden to shareholders that want to see returns on their investment. As a result, though unemployment is much lower temporarily, only meager investments are made in the local community, which could be left with nothing when the oil runs out or global energy prices drop.

Public Transit in Abidjan: SOTRA’s Post-Conflict Crisis

SOTRA was created at the request of the Ivorian government on December 16, 1960 with a public-private concession agreement shortly after Côte d'Ivoire’s independence from France. It is the only organized and formal public transport company serving Cote d’Ivoire’s industrial center, Abidjan, with its network of large buses and water buses which primarily provide ‘urban service’ and cross-lagoon transit.

Baltimore: A Case Study in Sustainable Economic Development

Baltimore has suffered significant amounts of economic damage since the end of World War II and de-industrialization: high unemployment, an exodus of residents to the suburbs, alarming homicide and drug addiction rates, and plummeting educational achievement by residents. To reverse the decline, city leaders have pursued an aggressive policy of redeveloping waterfront real estate for high-end commercial and residential use.

The Regional Environmental Center: A Case Study in Regional Solutions to Cross-Boundary Water Issues

In the aftermath of the conflict in the Balkans in the 1990s, waterways such as the Drina River became natural boundaries between newly formed countries. In other cases, like the Timok River between Bulgaria and Serbia, newly formed states inherited existing bilateral agreements. This presented new challenges with regards to management of shared resources, especially given the recent violent history and lack of trust between populations. Dozens of cities rely on shared rivers for drinking water and sanitation.

City From Scratch, Gujarat International Finance Tech-City: A Public-Private Partnership

GIFT, the Gujarat International Finance Tec-City, is a planned smart-city being designed and built in public-private partnership in the state of Gujarat, India. GIFT was conceived at the Vibrant Gujarat Global Investor Summit of 2007, and is spearheaded by Gujarat’s Chief Minister Narendra Modi. GIFT’s primary goals are to serve as the heart of the financial services sector in India and a to be a global financial hub. In order to attract businesses, workers, and residents, GIFT is designed as a “next class city” in terms of quality of life, infrastructure, and ambience.