New podcast episodes dive under the skin of smart and sustainable city life

​​​New podcast episodes dive under the skin of smart and sustainable city life

Have you ever wondered what the cities of tomorrow will look like and how they will strike a balance between growth and sustainability? Or what steps are being taken to ensure we'll be able to get around the cities quickly, safely, and sustainably? The second season of the Flow of Urban Life podcast explores the evolving challenges and opportunities of urban living.

It sometimes feels as if our cities have a life of their own, as they grow, evolve, and adapt to the ever-changing needs of the inhabitants.

In reality, cities are a fusion of their natural environment, human creativity, and technological innovation. With more and more people adopting urban life and the density of our cities only set to increase, there has never been a better time to look at the forces that mould modern metropolises. How can we ensure their vitality and resilience?

This was the inspiration and premise behind the second season of The Flow of Urban Life, KONE’s new five-part podcast series exploring ​​cities from every angle. The Flow of Urban Life takes a closer look at how we can innovate to improve urban flow and create smarter, more sustainable cities of tomorrow.

The new season features five exciting and influential guests who share their perspectives from diverse corners of the world, giving us an exclusive peek behind the scenes of crafting the future of our cities. The episodes cover inclusive urban living, cities’ climate resilience, and some examples of harnessing cutting-edge technology within urban spaces – to name just a few topics.

From metro stations to virtual workspaces

How to design a metro in a city that never sleeps? In the first episode of the Flow of ​​Urban Life podcast, additional commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, Ashwini Bhide takes us behind the scenes at Mumbai's ambitious new metro system, where engineers have to create a new rail network in the middle of one of the world's busiest cities with as little disruption to residents as possible.

In ​the second episode, climate-resilient urban development specialist Dr. Aditya Bahadur puts forward the idea that a major international film star could inspire climate action more effectively than politicians and think tanks. He provides a thought-provoking analysis of the many millions of low-income city dwellers whose lives will be most dramatically affected by climate change. The clock is ticking – but is it too late?

Washington DC-based urbanist Kristen Jeffers joins us in the third episode to discuss what truly makes urban life worth living. She sets out her template for inclusive modern cities that work for everyone. ”I want our cities to be more people-focused,” she says.

In our fourth episode, the gripping interview with leading workplace strategist Leeson Medhurst reveals an eye-opening future for our office environment, where flexibility, life-enhancing experiences and virtual reality will reign. He leads us through a fascinating deep-dive into the future of office spaces, offering a tantalizing glimpse into virtual workspaces and the arrival of the much-anticipated 'metaverse'. ”Spaces will be interchangeable, depending on your mood,” Medhurst predicts.

And finally, in the fifth episode, acclaimed architect Fernando Romero explores the question “How will our future cities change architecture?” The answer lies in a blend of the old, the new, and the sustainable. ”We are in a point in time that is super exciting, but also probably one of the most risky moments in our civilization,” he says.

Stepping into the shoes of global citizens

Co-hosted by former journalist Denise Wall, a well-known podcast host and content creator, the second series of The Flow of Urban Life follows on from the first season that launched in 2021.

“We wanted to focus on the real issues faced by urban populations,” she says, “because around 56 per cent of us live in an urban environment. We were looking for people who could speak about quality of life, the climate issue, and what cities might look like in the future – not just to live in, but to work in, too.”

“Truly listening to the different kinds of challenges urban citizens worldwide are facing on a daily basis, is very important to us. As people flow experts, KONE has a unique vantage point in the sense that we can help resolve most of these issues,” says Jenita Cresswell, head of Content & Dialogue at KONE.

“With this new season of the Flow of Urban Life, we want to spark conversation and get people thinking about the sustainable future of cities and urban living. It was great to have such a diverse group of guests joining our podcast and hear their inspiring stories from around the world,” Cresswell concludes.

A podcast with something for everyone

From the outset, the second series of The Flow of Urban Life was created with listeners of all kinds in mind – not just those with a professional interest in city life.

Each episode is a thought-provoker while you're loading the dishwasher, or to inspire debate around the dinner table.

“It's relevant for any one of us who lives in a city or plans to,” says Denise Wall, “because all the issues we discuss are relevant to us on a daily basis – or they will be in the future.”

The Flow of Urban Life podcast season 2 is available now on Spotify and other platforms.

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