Urban Sustainability in Theory

During the first year of the Urban Sustainability Project, consultants from around the nation joined us in writing, in order to portray the theoretical background on key issues of urban sustainability. Each expert wrote a detailed report informed by their specialty as it relates to the goals of the Urban Sustainability Project. This theoretical background has been essential in focusing and centering the project academically as we opened urban labs to test and adjust ideas in real cities with real people during the second stage of the Project (2014). Here you can find the English executive summary of each expert report, a complete summary of the theoretical background stage (stage one of the Project), as well as the full length report in Hebrew below.

What is Urban Sustainability?- Theoretical background summary

Summary of stage one, urban sustainability


Energy,  Dr. Yael Parag

Reducing urban energy consumption is essential to lowering urban carbon emissions. Dr. Parag suggests that to reduce energy consumption we need to increase the agency, or will, of individual actors to consume less as well the capacity of individuals to make those consumptive changes. Rather than focusing on the bottom (such as consumers) or the top (such as the regulators), she is interested in the middle-agents who are in the position to influence both the bottom and top. Abstract.


Local Action, Towards Sustainability: Heschel Center

The Heschel Center analyses the successes and failures of local action towards sustainable policy in Israel. It aims to identify the values and principles a local action group needs to have to promote a wide sense of sustainability. Abstract.


Design, Michal Eitan

Ms. Eitan outlines how design can be used to increase the quality of life in cities and decrease consumptive habits. She focuses on design which enables sustainable lifestyles, constraints consumption, and motivates sustainable behaviors. Abstract.

Communities, Dr. Shay Ben Yosef


To reduce consumption and create more sustainable cities, self-identity needs to be untangled from consumption. Community association decreases consumption because it separates identity from consumption. Dr. Yosef addresses practical ways to promote urban communities. Abstract.


Transportation, Prof. Erel Avineri

Professor Erel Avineri uses applications of behavioral economics to explain how urban governments could encourage people to chose sustainable transport options. Abstract.


Economic point of view, The Macro Center

The Macro Center explains the structure of the Israeli economy and proposes several interventions to promote sustainable lifestyles.Abstract.

 Social Media Nimrod Dwek


Social media is a powerful tool for change. Mr. Dwek addresses the challenges and opportunities of using social media to promote urban sustainability in Israel. He supports his conclusions with results from case studies from around the country.Abstract.

מונופולThe Workplace, The Macro Center

Both in the workplace and in the workforce, urban sustainable policy can have huge implications. The Macro Center outlines how sustainable practices can be applied and encouraged in the workplace and how sustainable policy can encourage job growth. Abstract.

אלעזר ראובני

Measuring Sustainability,  Meidad Kissinger

Dr. Kissinger is working on creating a indicators to measure sustainability. In the report, he explains how urban sustainability can be measured. Abstract.


Transition Initiatives, Yoav Egozi

Mr. Egozi outlines the importance of sustainability action on the grassroots level. He focuses on a bottom up approach for creating sustainable change.


Full expert papers  can be found in Hebrew here.


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