Alan Berger is Professor of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design at Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he teaches courses open to the entire student body. He is founding director of P-REX lab, at MIT, a research lab focused on environmental problems caused by urbanization, including the design, remediation, and reuse of waste landscapes worldwide. He is also Co-Director of CAU, MIT Center for Advanced Urbanism. All of his research and work emphasizes the link between our consumption of natural resources, and the waste and destruction of landscape, to help us better understand how to proceed with redesigning around our wasteful lifestyles for more intelligent design and development outcomes. Unlike conventional practice, there are no scalar limits in his outlook or pedagogy: projects are defined by the extent of the urban and environmental problems being addressed. He coined the term “Systemic Design” to describe the reintegration of disvalued landscapes into our urbanized territories and regional ecologies. In addition to his award winning books Drosscape: Wasting Land in Urban America, and Reclaiming the American West, his other books include Designing the Reclaimed Landscape, Nansha Coastal City: Landscape and Urbanism in the Pearl River Delta (with Margaret Crawford). His most recently published books are Systemic Design Can Change the World and Landscape + Urbanism Around the Bay of Mumbai (with Rahul Mehrotra). He also edited CAU's 2013 Report on the State of Health + Urbanism. He has established, (in collaboration with USEPA Superfund Region 8 and Tiffany & Company Foundation) the world's first web portal for community-based reclamation design advocacy at waste2place.mit.edu. Prior to MIT he was Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at Harvard-GSD, 2002-2008. He is a Prince Charitable Trusts Fellow of The American Academy in Rome.
Alan Berger from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) talks about the holistic city. He says we need to start thinking differently about urban growth, and design innovative cities that use ecological processes to clean and reuse waste water, so we can grow more food for the future. [credit: World Economic Forum]