According to the United Nations, nearly two-thirds of the world's population will live in urban areas by 2045. Today estimated at 4.2 billion, urban dwellers are expected to number 5 billion in 2030 and 6.7 billion in 2050.
At the heart of global financial and migration flows, metropolises are shaping societal values and global ways of life. They are windows onto the changing world, creating economic wealth and technological innovations.
Since the beginning of the third millennium, their centres have been regenerating and becoming more dense, while their peripheries spread out. But their long-term development model is in question. Victims of their own successes, will metropolises eventually become unlivable? What will be the social and environmental sustainability of these urban complexes? How can we articulate attractiveness and quality of life for all?
From New York to Paris Ile-de-France, Tokyo to Copenhagen, Singapore to Medellin, metropolises are inventing, at all scales, new development paths to combine economic competitiveness, urban regeneration, social inclusion, energy frugality and climate resilience. And in doing so, they are changing the world.
This issue of Papers highlights particularly inspiring strategies and initiatives to address the fundamental challenges of (Very) Greater Paris.