Pandemic Urbanism


What does COVID-19 mean for city life? What are the implications of this pandemic for urban form, mobility, sociability, and politics?

In recent months, life in our cities has been radically transformed. The novel coronavirus pandemic has demanded cities’ urgent responses to the acute pains brought about by this crisis. Yet at the same time, the pandemic has merely revealed and intensified cities’ preexisting conditions of inequality, neglect, and discrimination — and so too their capacities for mutuality, resilience, and care. While the urban experience of COVID-19 is necessarily occupied with basic survival in the present tense, it also invites critical reflection on what our cities are and more hopeful reimaginings of what they could be.

In this spirit, this one-day online symposium brought together more than 50 academics, researchers, practitioners, and activists to share their thoughts on the emerging state of pandemic urbanism.


This virtual symposium is organized by current and recent University of Washington doctoral students:


This event is sponsored by the College of Built Environments, the PhD Program in the Built Environment and the Interdisciplinary PhD Program in Urban Design and Planning at the University of Washington. Additional support is provided by PacTrans.

Special thanks to Jenn Engelke, Cole Kopca, Joshua Polansky, Brian Vogt, Erika Harris, Neile Graham, Julia Feyk, Yiyuan Wang, Boyang Sa, Jennifer Davidson, Carrie Sturts Dossick, Vikram Prakash, and Renee Cheng for their work to make this symposium possible.

Or contact any of the organizers listed above individually.