A city by any other name…

What is a city? A densely populated area? A sign at the end of a street announcing a beginning and an end of a small section of the Earth? Various definitions for what constitutes a city tie in aspects of population size, employment possibilities, landmarks, and resources to the banner of permanent urban settlement.

Founding myths about cities abound such as El Dorado – the dream of Spanish conquistadors, Atlantis – Plato’s lost city island, Athens – protected and partially founded by the goddess Athena, and Rome – derived from the fratricide perpetrated by Romulus.

We have analyzed and quantified what it means to be an urban inhabitant since humanity has started building defensive walls around a large non-kin communal living space in ancient times. TEDxVienna’s City 2.0 offers us another look at what cities mean to us and their effect on our lives.

Activate & Involve – Two Part Talk

Daniela Patti is an architect and planner. She has been working as a researcher in the CEIT Alanova research centre since 2010 where she is responsible for project development and management of European research projects within the Smart Cities strand and as a guest lecturer at the University of Roma Tre, Tor Vergata and Universad de Buenos Aires. As a board member of the Wonderland Platform for European Architecture she organizes workshops for the development of urban strategies.


Levente Polyák is an urbanist, researcher and critic. Having worked on urban projects for the New York, Paris, Budapest and Pécs municipalities and as founding member of the KÉK – Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre, he has organized events and exhibitions dealing with various contemporary urban and architectural phenomena. Since 2012 he is a board member of the Wonderland Platform for European Architecture where he organizes workshops for the development of urban strategies.

Urban Change

Nathan de Groot is a Dutch urbanist, journalist, optimist and recent graduate from the Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture & Design in Moscow. He studied in South Africa, Estonia, UK, Belgium, and The Netherlands. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Cultural Studies and a Master’s in Urban Cultures. He has worked as an independent researcher, journalist and all-round moderator in the field of urban planning, creative industries, literature and media.

Planning Isn’t Enough

Gregor Wiltschko studied Urban and Regional Planning at University of Technology Vienna and KTH Stockholm. After completing an ISoCaRP (International Society of City and Regional Planners) Urban Task Force in Guadalajara, Mexico he finished his diploma thesis at the IOC Olympic Studies Centre in Lausanne. His work focuses on cooperative urban planning processes and consulting in the field of “new urban mobility”.


Michael Badics is currently the senior director of AE Solutions, a new division of Ars Electronica. He was the founder and managing director of Memetics GmbH and has studied computer sciences at the Linzer Johannes Kepler University. He has 15 years working experience as a software engineer and manager in the multinational software company Fabasoft AG and 8 years experience managing the Ars Electronica Futurelab.

Bicycle Urbanism

Florian Lorenz is an ecological designer in the field of landscape, architecture, and urbanism. He has a strong personal and professional interest in active transportation with a prime focus on urban cycling. Since 2010, Florian has been head of research at Smarter Than Car (STC) and frequently discusses STC’s ideas via international conferences, workshops, and professional publications. As associate of the planning and communications consultancy PlanSinn, Florian worked to bring about Velo-City 2013, the Cycling Visionaries Awards, and various projects to further urban cycling in Vienna. He studied ecology as well as landscape architecture in Vienna and Copenhagen and has worked extensively in Europe, Asia, and North America.

TEDxVienna and City 2.0 would like to thank Weltmuseum, Sound Production and Trial and Happiness for making this event possible.

Join us on the 20th of September at Weltmuseum Wien, Neue Burg, for an inspiring evening with live speakers and ideas worth spreading about our common living room: the city!

Header Image(s) from Pixabay & Gratisography

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