Synergetic Cities: Information, Steady State and Phase Transition. Implications to urban scaling, smart cities and planning

Hermann Haken, Juval Portugali

Four concepts make the title of this book: Synergetic cities which is a view on cites as complex systems from the perspective of Haken’s theory of synergetics; information, which is a view on cities as complex systems commencing from the perspective of information theory. Next come steady state and phase transition which are two central aspects of complex systems in general and of cities as complex systems. Our aim is to introduce and develop the above four notions and then to discuss their implication to three issues that stand at the core of current discourse on cities as complex systems: urban allometery (or scaling) and smart cities—both attract special attention in the discourse on cities of the last two decades, as part of the attempt to transform the study of cities into a science. The third issue, city planning, attempts to adapt the process of planning to the understanding, and reality, of cities as complex, adaptive self-organizing systems.

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