About the Center


The last centuries and decades have witnessed unprecedented population and urbanization growth with the implication that today, for the first time in human history, more than half of world population lives in cities. In traditionally rural societies such as Indian and China the proportions today are 50% (India) and 75% (China), in Western countries the proportions are much higher (97% Netherlands, close to 90% USA, UK and France, 83% Germany), while in Israel 93% of the population lives in towns and cities. The consequences: most if not all social, cultural, political, environmental, security and military problems are essentially urban problems. Furthermore, the last decades have also witnessed unprecedented development of ICT (information-communication technologies), individually-based social networks and geo-referenced high-resolution spatial data, which are becoming the major tools of the smart cities suggested to deal with the complexity of cities and urban life.



There is an urgent need to, on the one hand, understand the multiple aspects of cities and urbanism, while on the other, to develop state-of-the-art theories, methodologies and technologies to deal with the complexity of the new urban era.



TAU City Center – Tel Aviv University’s Research Center for Cities and Urbanism is a unique interdisciplinary center that brings together the many TAU researchers – faculty members, graduate and postgraduate researchers – who study various aspects of cities and urbanism. The Center’s interests include urban theory and its application in city planning, urban design, management and policy formulation. Among the Center’s goals are:

  • Research. Advance basic and applied research on the various aspects of cities and urbanism in Israel and the world.
  • Global connections. Develop links with similar research centers around the world.
  • Local cooperations. Develop links with the various municipalities and other urban market and civil society institutions, especially within the metropolitan area of Tel Aviv.
  • Accessible knowledge. Make the many aspects of cities and urbanism accessible to the general public.
  • Teaching. Develop interdisciplinary courses and seminars on the various aspects of cities and urbanism to research students in TAU.


Expected outcome

The major expected outcome is that City Center – TAU Research Center for Cities and Urbanism – will become a world-leading center in all aspects of cities and urbanism ranging from urban theory to its application in city planning, urban design, management and policy formulation.



Research events:

Smart Cities Summer Course (in collaboration with International TAU): 

TAU Forum for Smart Cities: 

International academic events: 


For more information: About TAU City Center – ppt >>

Events page and the Publications page



TAU urban researchers: https://en-urban.tau.ac.il/researchers

Head of City Center: Prof. Juval Portugali

Steering Committee: Prof. Itzhak Benenson, Dr. Vered Blass, Dr. Efrat Blumenfeld-Lieberthal, Dr. Ilit Oppenheim, Mr. Ophir Pines-Paz

City Center's Team: Yael Bulis & Adva Sahar

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