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Bishwapriya Sanyal

Bishwapriya Sanyal is Ford International Professor of Urban Development and Planning at MIT.

Titles by This Editor

Livability, Territoriality, Governance, and Reflective Practice

Over the past hundred years of urbanization and suburbanization, four key themes have shaped urban and regional planning in both theory and practice: livability, territoriality, governance, and reflective professional practice. Planning Ideas That Matter charts the trajectories of these powerful planning ideas in an increasingly interconnected world.

The contributors, leading theorists and practitioners, discuss livability in terms of such issues as urban density, land use, and the relationship between the built environment and natural systems; examine levels of territorial organization, drawing on literature on regionalism, metropolitanism, and territorial competition; describe the ways planning connects to policy making and implementation in a variety of political contexts; and consider how planners conceive of their work and learn from practice.

Throughout, the emphasis is on how individuals and institutions--including government, business, professional organizations, and universities--have framed planning problems and ideas. The focus is less on techniques and programs than on the underlying concepts that have animated professional discourse over the years. The book is recommended for classroom use, as a reference for scholars and practitioners, and as a history of planning for those interested in the development of the field.

Prospects for the Positive Use of Advanced Information Technology

How will low-income communities be affected by the waves of social, economic, political, and cultural change that surround the new information technologies? How can we influence the outcome? This action-oriented book identifies the key issues, explores the evidence, and suggests some answers. Avoiding both utopianism and despair, the book presents the voices of technology enthusiasts and skeptics, as well as social activists.

The book is organized into three parts. Part I examines the issues in their socio-technical, economic, and historical contexts. Part II—the core of the book—proposes five initiatives for using computers and electronic communications to benefit low-income urban communities:

- to provide access to the new technologies in ways that enable low-income people to become active producers rather than passive users;

- to use the new technologies to improve the dialogue between public agencies and low-income neighborhoods;

- to help low-income youth to exploit the entrepreneurial potential of information technologies;

- to develop approaches to education that take advantage of the educational capabilities of the computer;

- to promote the community computer: applications of computers and communications technology that foster community development.

Part III presents a synthesis of the various topics. Its main questions are, What are the prospects and problems of initiatives to enable the poor to benefit from the new technologies? and What federal, state, and municipal policies would enhance the prospects for success?

Contributors: Alice Amsden, Jeanne Bamberger, Anne Beamish, Manuel Castells, Joseph Ferreira, Peter Hall, Leo Marx, William J. Mitchell, Mitchel Resnick, Bish Sanyal, Donald A. Schön, Alan and Michelle Shaw, Michael Shiffer, Bruno Tardieu, Sherry Turkle, Julian Wolpert