Engineering drawing.

How can we reimagine food production to connect city residents with their food?

Research Project Name

Designing Food-Resilient Cities

What We Did

In countries across the globe, city residents are increasingly disconnected from their food. They have more choices and access than ever when it comes to eating — from dining out, to ordering takeout using mobile apps, to cooking with ingredients purchased at food centers or supermarkets. But they are not adequately informed about their food’s nutritional value or meaningfully engaged with its production.

The supply chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic revealed the fragility that has crept into urban food systems. This situation inspired us to consider how design can reimagine cities as places that have the capacity to supply urban residents with nutritious food grown within city lines.

The disconnection between food production and consumption in cities stems from the fact that urban areas must import most food from remote locations. This puts food supply chains at risk for disruptions from large-scale crises, which can result in price fluctuations, limited access to nutritious food, and over-reliance on a limited, and not particularly diverse, set of suppliers.

In light of this problem, we wondered: How can designers reintroduce food production in cities, better connect residents with their food, and foster a food-resilient future?

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Nayan Parekh, Jin Xi Ng, Gabriela Molina, Lauren Horner, Bernice Ho, Silvia Gomez, Lee Jia Lin, Seah Jia Neng, Rachel Lee, Santiago de la Cuesta, Franchesca Sciamarelli

Year Completed