Understanding the Life Cycles of Cities

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeChapterScientificpeer-review


This chapter focuses on the specificity of Urban Morphology in comparison to other field of research, which shares the same interest on urban form. This specificity is intended as the raison d’être of Urban Morphology itself. Compared to Urban History, which is mostly intended as an ordered sequence of conventional interpretations of urban form, corresponding to distinguishable epochs and consciously related spatial products, Urban Morphology complements the aforementioned aspects with a comparable concern on the experimental processes of transformation, made via trials and errors, which creates the conditions for the possible appearance of the conventional as an objective. Compared to Urban Restoration, interested in preservation of the existing, which is assumed as a value, Urban Morphology also considers the critical reflection on the precedent, which is not necessary considered as a value. Compared to Urban Sociology, mostly focusing on agency and its embodiment in the city form, Urban Morphology considers agency as a phenomenon emerging through the endless interplay with the space of the city, which is symmetrically revealed trough the same relation. Therefore, it appears how the specificity of Urban Morphology relay on its interest on the entire life cycle of the city, encompassing conscious and unconscious aspects which belong to the same process, resulting into an urban anthropology.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTeaching Urban Morphology
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages21
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-76126-8
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameThe Urban Book Series


  • Ruins
  • Reclamation
  • Convention
  • Construction
  • Dissolution


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