Sabine Barles is a professor and researcher. An engineer in urban planning and development, she graduated from the INSA in Lyon (June 1988), then obtained a DEA in "Urban planning and spatial practices" from the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) and the Université de Paris VIII (June 1989), followed by a PhD in urban planning and development at the ENPC (February 1993). She is now a professor at the University of Paris I.

WEB - Barles Sabine-2 


er research work focuses on urban planning, and its relationship to the flow of energy and matter, in a world of increasing urbanisation (more than half of the world's inhabitants are now urban) where nature is regressing and where it is necessary to prepare for and/or adapt to climate change and ever more frequent and severe extreme weather events. Her field of research is mainly structured around three main themes: (i) urban metabolism and territorial ecology, (ii) the history of technology and the urban environment, and (iii) socio-economic approaches.
Sabine Barles draws on the concepts of territorial ecology, the history of urban techniques (18th - 20th centuries) the history of the urban environment (18th - 20th centuries) and its mobilities (19th - 20th centuries) to study the trajectories, regimes and socio-ecological transitions that occur in urban systems.
Her approach is both retrospective and prospective, it is part of the study of human-nature co-evolution and therefore the field of anthroposystems and the anthropocene.

The method set up and developed by Sabine Barles, for which she is recognised as a precursor in Europe and the world, is now used in a large number of contexts.
Since 2004, she has been an Associate Member of the Centre d'Histoire des Techniques et de l'Environnement of the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers (CNAM) and the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS). She is also (with Olivier Coutard, Nathalie Blanc and Jean-Yves Toussaint) a member of the working group of the Prospective Nationale de Recherche Urbaine initiated by the CNRS (2015-2016).

In awarding this distinction to Sabine Barles, the School of Engineering and Computer Science of the University of Liège and its Urban & Environmental Engineering Research Unit, wish to highlight the central role of cities in the regulation of the flows of energy and matter that characterise our contemporary societies. A profound transformation of the urban metabolism is essential if we are to meet today's climate and environmental challenges, and this requires close collaboration between engineering sciences and other disciplines.

Sa venue à l'Université de Liège sera pour la professeure Sabine Barles l'occasion de donner une conférence intitulé "Le métabolisme urbain entre histoire et prospective", dans le cadre de la journée UEE 2020. Cette conférence aura lieu le vendredi 27 mars de 17h à 18h, à l'exèdre Dick Annegarn (bâtiment B8).

DOCTors HONORIS CAUSA upon proposal by faculties in 2020