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Listen Now! My Perfect City on the BBC World Service

Lab Co-Director Dr Ellie Cosgrave and Honorary Professor Greg Clark discuss “My Perfect City” in new BBC World Service radio series. Episode One asks whether San Francisco's recycling scheme and sustainable public transport a model to follow.

After three series showcasing solutions to global problems from countries around the world, the My Perfect Country team now turn their attention to the achievements of “perfect cities”. With over half of the world’s population living in cities, and with estimate of 6.4 billion people to be living in cities by 2050- getting urban policy right today will determine the wellbeing of the planet over this century.


Over the course of six episodes- presenter Fi Glover returns with Dr Ellie Cosgrave and Professor Greg Clark to analyse and critique the best policies from global cities. The team scour the world looking for the most inspirational cities, from those tackling environmental issues and urban violence, to encouraging political participation and transforming slums. Are they models other cities should follow? Listen here!


Programme One: The Green City, San Francisco, USA

San Francisco’s mandatory recycling scheme and sustainable public transport come under the spotlight. The panel also consider the town of Kamikatsu in Japan, which aims to be 100% zero-waste by 2020.


Programme Two: The Smart City, Seoul, South Korea

How data is being used to help Seoul run smoothly. The team also look at how 20,000 sensors have transformed life in Santander, Spain.


Programme Three: The 24hr City, London, UK

As investment in the night-time economy rises, we look at how this is working in London – is anywhere else doing a better job?


Programme Four: Participatory Budgeting, Paris, France

The team find out how in Paris citizens vote on how to spend part of the city’s budget on a variety of initiatives to improve all aspects of urban life.


Programme Five: Knife Crime, Glasgow, UK

Fi Glover and her team ask if Glasgow’s rapid decline in knife crime offers lessons to other cities trying to tackle the problem


Programme Six: Transforming Slum Cities, Medellin, Colombia

The team investigate the urban transforming of the city of Medellin in Colombia.


A Whistledown Production for BBC World Service. Produced by Anishka Sharma and Eve Streeter.