Special Issue "Nature-Based Solutions and their Relation to Urban Resilience"

A special issue of Buildings (ISSN 2075-5309).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2017

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Steffen Lehmann

Cluster for Sustainable Cities, The University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth PO1 2DJ, UK
Interests: green urbanism; climate change impact; high-performance architecture; energy-efficient cities
Guest Editor
Dr. Silvio Caputo

Cluster for Sustainable Cities, The University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth PO1 2DJ, UK
Guest Editor
Dr. Alessandro Melis

Cluster for Sustainable Cities, The University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth PO1 2DJ, UK

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Urbanisation is a major driver of land use change and environmental decline. Urbanisation affects cities’ resilience in complex ways. The increase in urban areas has been linked to the impact of profoundly altering the urban habitat and relationship between the natural and built environments. There is also growing recognition of the need for daily contact with green spaces and nature in order to live happy, productive and meaningful lives.

Over the last decade, nature-based solutions and urban resilience have become key concepts aimed at better understanding how existing urban scenarios can be transformed and enhanced to counteract environmental decline. The benefits of nature in urban environments have been long recognised, both from the perspective of a changing climate and a transition towards healthier cities. Yet, the recently coined term “re-naturing” seems to suggest that new types of solutions are required that (in ambition, scale and innovation) go beyond the conventional benefits that urban green areas can yield. At the same time, new conceptualisations of urban models, buildings and infrastructure are emerging that can support new approaches to fuse the urban environment with nature in productive (environmental, social and economic) ways. We ask for contributions that explore a new understanding of nature within the city, discussing these kinds of emerging urban models.

Unpacking resilience and nature within cities, this Special Issue of Buildings will bring together a collection of original scholarly articles that reflect on environmentally-conscious urban and architectural design in three different domains:

  • Firstly, in the wider debate on urban resilience and metabolism,
  • Secondly, connected to the theme of systemic nature-based solutions in cities and city regions;
  • Finally, in regard to the current debate on the circular economy, circular systems and resource-intensive producer-consumer relationships.

Reflecting on the implementation of nature-based solutions to address and soften climatic impacts on cities, this Special Issue aims to disseminate new context-specific knowledge on the factors enhancing urban resilience while re-establishing the relationship between the urban dweller and nature.

This Special Issue will offer timely, interdisciplinary perspectives on the theory and practice of designing resilient and healthy urban space and neighbourhoods. It will not only explore the age-old problem of urbanisation in light of current challenges with growing impacts from climate change, such as cities heating up in summer and the need for more resource-efficiency, it will also present novel strategies for addressing those challenges holistically through research, practice and policy making. Submitted articles might present best practices in engaging communities in practical solutions to transform their surroundings, while empowering their own capacities as active citizens.

Prof. Steffen Lehmann
Dr. Silvio Caputo
Dr. Alessandro Melis
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Buildings is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 350 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Systemic nature-based solutions
  • Urban climate resilience: framework for resilient cities
  • Biophilic cities: well-being in cities
  • Circular economy and systemic change
  • Inclusive urban regeneration
  • Resource efficiency
  • Low-carbon neighbourhoods
  • Urban metabolism: the energy-water-food Nexus
  • Cooling cities
  • Urban food production and consumption

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.

Journal Contact

Buildings Editorial Office
St. Alban-Anlage 66, 4052 Basel, Switzerland
Tel. +41 61 683 77 34
Fax: +41 61 302 89 18
Editorial Board
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