Towards Green(er) Cities: Contextualizing Green Benefits for Urban Spaces and Contemporary Societies

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-7635

Editorial | Open Access

Towards Green(er) Cities: Contextualizing Green Benefits for Urban Spaces and Contemporary Societies

  • Juaneé Cilliers School of Built Environment, Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building, University of Technology Sydney, Australia

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There is an expanding understanding of the value and critical need for green(er) cities. It comes at a time when green spaces are depleting on a global scale, in order for cities to host the majority of the world’s population. The contest between diverse land-uses is inflating the pressure on already strained resources, intensifying the growing carbon footprint and impairing water quality, and compromising health and overall quality of life. Soon our cities will be far removed from the safe, clean, and liveable environments, as envisioned in planning theory, if we continue with business-as-usual. There is an increasing scientific appreciation of the interrelated role of green land-uses, the value of our environment and its related ecosystem services, which acts as catalyst to realise the objectives of broader sustainability. Although literature is clear on the importance, role, benefits, and impact of green(er) cities, the realisation of the greening initiatives in practice is still limited, and more should be done to embed green(er) thinking as part of mainstream urban planning. Urban spatial transformation is needed to reclaim nature for cities and to enhance the direct and indirect benefits that nature provides to contemporary societies. This thematic issue considered various trans-disciplinary approaches to provide a way forward in the quest of prioritising the notion of green(er) cities, while drawing on a range of evidence-led initiatives.

Keywords:  contemporary societies; future cities; green benefits; sustainability; urban spaces

Published:   14 October 2021


© Juaneé Cilliers. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.