The theme of the PSSD Studio 2018 was Urban Resilience. The 100 Resilient Cities project pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation defines urban resilience as “the capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses, and systems within a city to survive, adapt, and grow no matter what kinds of chronic stresses and acute shocks they experience”. In the coming decades, climate change, demographic changes and the growth of cities will put major stress on urban areas.
Cities are therefore starting to prepare with projects and programmes to make citizen, infrastructures, institutions and urban planning ready for unforeseen events and major transformations. Milan, as one of the 100 cities included in the project, has chosen a number of strategic priorities, which match the forecasted transformations of the future of the city. These include addressing issues of increasing heat, congestion, the shortage of affordable housing, security and finding alternative economic models in food system, circular economy and digital manufacturing.

The course had the goal to design services that are relevant for these strategic areas of resilience and to do so by mobilising new technologies such as machine learning/AI, blockchain, internet of things, big data, virtual reality and cryptocurrencies which will inevitably be a significant component of future solutions. Student projects will therefore have the challenge to integrate, at least conceptually, these different technologies in the service design approach.

The course had the privilege of working closely with the office of the Chief Resilience Officer part of the General Directorate of the Municipality of Milan. There have been multiple encounters with stakeholders within the Municipality of Milan who helped the students align their projects with the priorities and context of the city.

The course focused on some of the strategic topics of the project “100 Resilient cities” ( for the city of Milan: COOL MILANO, MILANO CITTA’ D’ACQUA / MILAN CITY OF WATER, MILANO CIRCOLARE / CIRCULAR MILAN, SAFER MILAN, ABITARE MILANO / HOUSING IN MILAN

Professors: Anna MeroniDaniela Selloni, Stefana Broadbent

Tutors: Martina Rossi, Luca Molinari

Partners: Comune di Milano, ThoughtWorks

Guest Experts: Stefano Besana, Federica Brunone, Alessandro Confetti, Andrea Piovani


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