How to Build Inclusive Cities


How do we build cities in which everyone—regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, age, or ability—can live and thrive?

Unfortunately, no silver-bullet answers or cookie-cutter solutions exist. But there are some imitable strategies that cities and citizens around the world are employing, and some of these were discussed at the Brookings Institution on Thursday.

Universal Design (UD) is an approach to design that increases the potential for developing a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals. It is a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012). It creates products, systems, and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.