"On Daylight" Housing and Urban Planning: A Daylight Talk by Jan Gehl

Jan Gehl (DK)

21 May 2024


The 2024 Daylight Talk series continues with Jan Gehl, architect, professor, and consultant on urban design. Jan Gehl will give the Daylight Talk titled ‘”On Daylight” Housing and Urban Planning’ in collaboration with The Royal Danish Academy. 

Natalie Mossin, Head of Institute at the Royal Danish Academy – Institute of Architecture and Technology, will present the talk and moderate the Q&A session. 

The talk will be available to watch on the D/A website on 21 May 2024. 

‘Daylight Talks’ is organised by the VELUX Group in collaboration with individual schools of architecture and they are endorsed by the International Union of Architects (UIA) and the European Association for Architectural Education (EAAE).


Daylight Talk #20:
“On Daylight” Housing and Urban Planning: A Daylight Talk by Jan Gehl 

Around 1960 the paradigms for city planning were radically changed. Modernism became dominant, focus moved from a city of  Spaces to the city of Buildings surrounded by left over space. At about the same time the invasion of motor cars really took off.  In this process the care for the people using cities - looked after for centuries by tradition and experience – was completely left behind. Cities for People became an overlooked and forgotten dimension.  This is the story told by Jan Gehl in his book “Cities for People”(available in 39 languages) which goes on to describe why looking after people is crucial for livability, sustainability and health in the cities of  the 21st century.  


About Jan Gehl

Jan Gehl, (Denmark, 1936), architect, professor, and consultant on urban design, has focused his career on improving the quality of urban life, by reorienting the design of the city towards the people in the cities: public life, pedestrians, and cyclists. His books include the by now “classics” “Life between Buildings” and “Cities for People”. Published in more than 40 languages. Major City improvement projects with Gehl Architects include Copenhagen, Melbourne, Sydney, London and New York. Jan Gehl has been awarded the ”Sir Patrick Abercrombie Prize for exemplary contributions to Town Planning”, The key to the City of Sydney, honorary  doctor degrees in Edinburgh, Toronto, Varna and Halifax and is honorary fellow of the Architectural Institutes in Denmark, UK (RIBA), USA, Canada, Scotland, Ireland as well as the Planning Institutes in Australia and Ireland.  

About Natalie Mossin

Natalie Mossin is a Danish architect, curator, and writer. She is Head of Institute at the Royal Danish Academy – Institute of Architecture and Technology, specializing in sustainable development in the built environment. She has extensive experience with capacity building, innovation initiatives as well as operational and strategic leadership. Her books include the “An Architecture Guide to the UN 17 Sustainable Development Goals” series, and most recently “Innovation of Nothing – the capabilities needed to lead sustainable change in the built environment”. 

About The Royal Danish Academy 

The Royal Danish Academy – Architecture, Design, Conservation orients itself towards the outside world and aims to take great social responsibility. We strive to be an active, creative and leading player in relation to the major national and global agendas that is shaping our time.

The Academy is a research and educational institution that is and always has been in continuous transformation. But one thing is certain: We draw on a historical foundation of practice, art and science. And we believe that this is exactly what qualifies us to take the lead in innovative creativity, technological solutions, ground-breaking research and noticeable social impact.

The Royal Danish Academy – Architecture, Design, Conservation unites three fields of knowledge: academic research, artistic research and professional practice as three different ways to discover, invent and create.

These three fields are closely interlinked in the education, enabling us to develop graduates and knowledge, which match the needs of the profession, while contributing world-class research, ground-breaking artistic design and new experimental understanding. Our knowledge base gives the Royal Danish Academy – Architecture, Design, Conservation a unique position among educational and research institutions both in Denmark and abroad.