About Us
Contact Us
EC Brochure
Urban Watershed Research
The Humane Metropolis
The Humane Metropolis

William H. "Holly" Whyte (1917-1999) was one of America's most influential and respected commentators on cities, people, and open spaces. Through his writings - particularly The Organization Man (1956), The Last Landscape (1968), and City: Rediscovering the Center (1988) - he taught a generation of urban designers to view cities as habitats for people, rather than simply as economic machines, transportation nodes, or grandiose architectural stagesets.

As the United States approaches 300 million residents, of whom four-fifths live in cities or suburbs, Holly Whyte's vision of people-centered urban communities has never been more needed. And it seems safe to assume that this vision would today also incorporate recent insights on urban ecology and sustainability (e.g., Daily, ed. 1997), in short a symbiosis of people and nature.

On June 6 and 7, 2002, about 300 urban design practitioners, writers, ecologists, grassroots activists, and students gathered in New York City for The Humane Metropolis: People and Nature in the 21st Century - A Symposium to Celebrate and Continue the Work of William H. Whyte. The event was organized by the Ecological Cities Project at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, with a grant from the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. Additional support was provided by the Wyomissing Foundation, the National Park Service, the U. S. Forest Service, and Mr. Laurance S. Rockefeller, a longtime friend of the Whyte Family and supporter of Holly's work.

For more information on the symposium, read the conference summary or view the agenda (.pdf) and speaker bios.

Return to Top


© 2006 The Ecological Cities Project
All Rights Reserved
Last Updated: January 20, 2006