Humanity Might Have Been Born to Live in Cities

Paleo-Style Sensibilities Aside, Earth's Future Hinges on the Success of Our Urban Spaces

Sometimes it feels like we made a wrong turn a long way back.

Perhaps it was the shift to fossil fuels and scientific medicine that led us to this place, a population of nearly 8 billion crowded onto a warming planet, a terrestrial species melting the ice caps so there is less and less land to inhabit or to grow food.

Or maybe it happened further back, with our jump down the food chain to become growers and eaters of grass (and maize, and rice, and sorghum). Agriculture started the …