Urban Metabolism Lecture: Clare Lyster, “Learning From Logistics”

Increasingly, the field of logistics is gaining scholarly traction in the design disciplines. Through work on supply chain systems, data networks, mobility landscapes, and new forms of delivery, designers are not only exploring how logistical networks format urban territory, but also projecting how logistical intelligence can be deployed toward the future design of cities. Within this context, Clare Lyster will talk about her recent book, Learning from Logistics: How Networks Change Our Cities (Birkhäuser, 2016). The publication documents a series of communication systems, that since the 1970s, increasingly choreograph the flow of materials, data and people around the world each day (FedEx; Amazon; Ryan Air; Uber etc.). Focus is on how these time-space networks shape space, and more significantly, on their implications for the city and for design thinking and practice. The book deliberates the agency of logistics as a spatial apparatus, by presenting logistics as a framework for urban production in an era when flow has emerged as the primary expression of urbanity. By extension, it ponders how designers might embrace logistics, either by critically integrating these systems into the built environment; by hijacking logistical models for other more ethical ends, or, by envisioning the logisticalization of space more radically to generate new configurations of space. The talk will be followed by remarks and a Q+A.

A limited number of books will be available for signing.

This is an event organized by the Urban Metabolism student group at the GSD.

Anyone requiring accessibility accommodations should contact the events office at (617) 496-2414 or events@gsd.harvard.edu.