Simple ideas for healthy, livable cities

Above is a short video presenting one of the concepts for urban improvement that have been selected as finalists for the Philips Livable Cities Award.

It has been very interesting over the last couple of years to watch international technology companies start to get ahead of the curve on sustainability, developing programs, initiatives, and advertising designed to position themselves as leaders.  Siemens, Cisco, IBM and now Philips have all come into my recent view on the “making cities better” radar screen, and I’m sure there are others.

In the case of Netherlands-based electronics giant Philips, the company’s web site explains the rationale:

“As a global health and well-being company, we firmly believe that the challenges around the health and well-being of our planet offer substantial business opportunities, creating value for our company as well as society at large. Through sustainable products and services, we contribute to a better and higher quality of life for everyone on the planet.”

Under the banner “because better cities make better lives,” the company last year established the Philips Livable Cities Award to generate practical, achievable ideas “for improving the health and well-being of people living in cities.”  Individuals, NGOs and businesses were invited to submit ideas for simple solutions that would improve urban dwellers’ health and well-being.