Dr Cindy Frewen, FAIA, APF, urban futurist and architect, teaches the Design Futures Workshop and Social Change at the University of Houston graduate program in Strategic Foresight. In addition, she consults, speaks, and writes on the future of cities and design futures, specializing in the intersection of people, technology, and complexity. Clients include UNESCO, US AID, Hallmark Cards, IBM, and Innovaro. Plus she is Chairperson of the Board of the Association of Professional Futurists with 350 members in 27 countries, writes a column for The Kansas City Star newspaper, and serves on the boards of the Kansas City Design Center and the University of Kansas School of Architecture and Urban Design. A business owner for three decades focused on sustainability, community development, and public work, Dr Frewen was the chief architect for planning and design of the Kansas City downtown civic center and Ilus W. Davis Park. She has designed courthouses, schools, city halls, police facilities, fire stations, zoos, and parks. She was recognized by the American Institute of Architects as a Fellow and featured in a traveling exhibit “That Exceptional One”, the National Association of Women Business Owners as a Business Owner of the Year, and others for excellence in design and business. She holds an undergraduate degree in architecture and a doctorate in communications from the University of Kansas where she was recognized as a Distinguished Alumna and an MS in futures studies from the University of Houston.
Since the coronavirus is largely an urban disaster, cities are central to the conversation. What makes some cities spring forward and others be overwhelmed? There are some patterns. Dr Frewen will consider historic examples of winners and losers, what this pandemic has uniquely exposed and exploited, and how future disasters and pandemics might look. She will explain historic examples, some current differences, and key parameters of readiness for massive change, whether sudden or slow.