The Institute for Future Cities

The Institute for Future Cities is a multidisciplinary research unit based within the international, award winning University of Strathclyde. We work with commercial, civic and academic partners across the world to understand better the challenges faced by cities as places to live and work, and to help unlock the potential of cities to provide innovative ways of enhancing their quality of life. Our strength lies in our ability to respond quickly and agilely to the changing needs of cities and to help promote socially progressive and inclusive urban development.

Our vision

To improve the quality of life of citizens by making cities healthier, more sustainable and more resilient, leading research and innovation to help:

  • Reduce economic inequalities in cities
  • Produce sustainable and resilient urban systems
  • Improve wellbeing and health of citizen
  • Encourage citizen participation

Our approach

We seek to help tackle the major economic, environmental and social challenges faced by cities through collaboration and co-design, working with academics, commercial partners, civic leadership, voluntary sector and citizens. Our approach seeks to make a difference to people’s live by:

  • initiating inclusive conversations to identify local challenges
  • build coalitions of partners to help address the challenges
  • drive forward research to enhance understanding of the issue and identity possible solutions
  • collaborate with local partners to deliver benefits

Where we work

As part of an international University, we engage with partners in cities across the world, sharing learning and insights as part of international networks, and collaborate with other future city research centres.

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Where are we working?

  • In Glasgow, our home city, which has an international reputation for its leading ambition to be a sustainable city, working with the City Council, the Chamber of Commerce, and with local communities
  • In Scottish cities where we engage with the Scottish Government, national NGOs and voluntary organisations
  • In the UK and Europe, collaborating with SMEs, technology companies and city leaders to support sustainable city planning
  • Globally, including a focus on the future of the city centre, improving quality of life in informal settlements, enhancing citizen participation in policy making, and using technology to improve air quality.

Our base

We operate from the heart of Glasgow, the UK’s future city demonstrator, where we are located in the state-of-the-art Technology & Innovation Centre; itself designed to facilitate greater collaboration between academic researchers and other partners.  Our custom-built City Observatory facility allows our partners to help identify approaches to address urban challenges, to visualise solutions, and to use data analytics to understand cities and city systems in new ways.

Our Team

Led by Richard Bellingham and Robert Rogerson, the Institute extends beyond its core team  drawing together expertise across Strathclyde University (and other Universities across the world) from a wide range of disciplines and backgrounds in order to apply key expertise, diverse perspectives, and a powerful network of external partnerships to tackle complex city issues.