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New research shines light on future directions for cities on sustainability and climate action

What’s in a word?  ‘Smart’, ‘eco’ or ‘future’ cities? Around the world, numerous city initiatives have sprung up in recent years to signal their engagement with sustainable development and global climate change action. But what is the difference between these and other city labels? Are some more important than others? And how will they develop in the coming 50 years? Scottish and Dutch academics have carried out a global study across 35 different city labels revealing that the term ‘sustainable city’ has been the most popular and overarching one in policy and academic research until five years ago.

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