In 2015 academic staff from The Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment visited several universities in China to discuss the potential for closer co-operation around research and other forms of collaboration. Arising from this visit, the Centre has developed close links with two universities: College of Architecture and Urban Planning at Tongji University in Shanghai and College of Urban and Environmental Sciences at Peking University in Beijing. As a result two seminars were organised at the University of Westminster in April and December 2016.

Sustainable urban infrastructure and social inclusion – improving choice and wellbeing in UK and Chinese cities

In December 2016 the Centre for Urban Infrastructure organised a seminar for invited participants from Tongji, Westminster and a number of other planning practitioners from London. Each participant made a short presentation about a topic relating to the seminar topic drawing on personal research interests and their knowledge of urban infrastructure and issues around social inclusion.

The workshop investigated how cities and urban infrastructures provide choice and wellbeing. In cities, wellbeing is often limited for economically vulnerable groups following, for example, poor accessibility and arrangements for citizen involvement. The workshop addressed issues of social sustainability in cities and specifically how a variety of infrastructures in cities offer choice. The focus overall was on cities and urban life in China and the UK and included an investigation of cases and policies.