Magazine article Foreign Policy

16 Global Cities to Watch

Magazine article Foreign Policy

16 Global Cities to Watch

Article excerpt


1. Singapore. Surely the world's best-managed city, if a little too orderly for my own taste. It's always worth watching what they are up to, because they provide a clear model for much of the world.

2. Gurgaon. The growing IT center on the edge of New Delhi, which provides a vision of a considerably more middle-class India housed in tall structures that are less constricted by India's often awful land-use restrictions.

3. Cairo. The world watched as an urban uprising centered in Tahrir Square overthrew Hosni Mubarak's regime, but Egypt's course is far from certain. This city may end up determining the future of democracy in the region.

4. Hong Kong/Shenzhen. This matched pair of cities will reflect China's ability to ride out ongoing economic storms.

5. Athens. The urban heart of Western civilization and the center of the current chaos that buffets the European Union. What happens in Greece once again affects us all.

6. Vancouver. This beautiful Canadian city continues to show how immigration and good architecture can combine to make cities vibrant and fun.

7. New York. This great city still matters. Protests on Wall Street. A new science campus on Roosevelt island. There is plenty worth watching.

8. Sao Paulo. The Brazilian megacity has a mayoral election in 2012 that will provide a chance to re-examine both that city and the political future of Brazil.

9. Christchurch. A massive rebuilding effort following this year's New Zealand earthquake is a unique opportunity to rethink urban form.

10. London. …

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