Talks & Writing

Video of recent presentations and selected articles and essays.


For speaking engagements, I am exclusively represented by Bits & Atoms • (646) 780-0570 •

At Code for America 2012 Summit, on smart cities.


At PopTech: The City Resilient, on mesh networks and urban resilience.


At the Cambridge Phenomenon 50th Anniversary, on technology-led economic development.

future knowledge ecosystems: the next 20 years of technology-led economic development from Anthony Townsend on Vimeo.



World Affairs Council of Northern California

“Smart Cities”, interview with Allison Arieff, October 22, 2013.

New America Foundation

“A New Civics for Smart Cities”, October 8, 2013, Washington, DC.

City Age

Panel: Big Data: Innovations and Ideas for A Smarter City, October 7, 2013, New York, NY.

Architectural Record Annual Innovation Conference

Panel: Cities and Data Mining, October 3, 2013, New York, NY.

MIT Forum on Future Cities

This was one of the most amazing gatherings of researchers and designers working on smart cities, orgainzed by Carlo Ratti and Assaf Biederman of the SENSEable City Lab. Here’s the link to MIT TV video, my talk starts around 33:00.

“What Is A Smart City?” IESE Interview

A short video interview where I explain smart cities to a professor from the IESE, one of the world’s leading business schools based in Barcelona.


Selected research articles, essays and reports I’ve authored.

Townsend, A. “The Shame of Boston’s Wireless Woes“, The Atlantic Cities, April 17, 2013.

Townsend, A.M., 2013, “Smart Cities: Promise and Peril for Urban Policy and Planning in the Atlantic Basin”. In Urban Futures: An Atlantic Perspective,  German Marshall Fund of the United States: Washington, DC.

Ratti C. and Townsend A., “The Social Nexus“, Scientific American, August 16, 2011.

Townsend, A., “How New York can become a genius magnet: The art of engineering a 21st century science center“, New York Daily News, July 31, 2011.

Townsend, A., et. al., 2010, A Planet of Civic Laboratories: The Future of Cities, Information and Inclusion, Institute for the Future: Palo Alto, Calif.

Townsend, A., Pang, A. and Weddle R., 2009, Future Knowledge Ecosystems: The Next Twenty Years of Technology-Led Economic Development, Institute for the Future: Palo Alto, Calif.