Cities are systems of systems, and can be seen as a particular type of socio-ecological system (SES) that is made up of multiple complex systems. Cities are compared to the human body with a metabolic system and a life cycle and cities must be understood as a complex chain of cause and effect. Governance, integrated development, and transitions from agrarian to industrial economies represent some of the challenges of cities. Examples of cities across the world are given. There are many leverage points within a complex system in which a small shift could enable a significant change, as written by Donella Meadows. Socio-ecological transformation must go beyond exiting paradigms.
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