On November 15, New Village Press Director Lynne Elizabeth and Director of the Center for the Living City Stephan A. Goldsmith received the 2010 Jane Jacobs Urban Communication Book Award for What We See: Advancing the Observations of Jane Jacobs. Elizabeth co-edited the work, and Goldsmith lead-edited as well as initially conceiving the book to honor the late Jane Jacobs. Urban Communication Foundation, a non-profit that promotes and supports research in urban communication, presented the award at the National Communication Association annual conference in San Francisco. A reception was held at Johnny Foley’s Irish House on 243 O’Farrell Street.
What We See is a collection of original essays by more than thirty respected activists, scholars, economists, planners, and public figures around the globe whose work has been inspired by Jane Jacobs. Jacobs’ work The Life and Death of Great American Cities was a profound rethinking of the way urban planning could affect all aspects of city life – she challenged economic and political-minded city planning which often created isolated areas of urban decay in favor of mixed-used cities in which people would be able to live, work, and play in thriving, organic communities. Jacobs’ unconventional wisdom challenged planners, developers, and policymakers of her time; What We See is the next generation of thinkers who continue her legacy.