In the RESEARCH ESSAY component of the FUTURE CITY COMPETITION students research the
year's topic and write an essay (maximum of 1000 words) on how that topic influenced or shaped the design of their city.
THIS YEAR'S RESEARCH THEME
Design Clean Solutions to Manage Stormwater Pollution"
What happens when rain falls in cities?
Hard surfaces—like roofs, sidewalks, and parking lots—prevent rain from soaking into
Instead, rainwater turns into runoff. It flows quickly over surfaces, which can lead
to flooding. As it moves, runoff carries pollutants into storm drains which empty
directly into the waterways we use for swimming, fishing, and drinking water. In a
matter of minutes, rain becomes stormwater runoff—a serious source of water pollution. Since
a clean water supply is important to every city, it’s time to rethink runoff.
Instead of a nuisance to channel away, runoff can be a valuable resource. Engineers
are designing new ways to manage stormwater that make city landscapes act more like
natural landscapes. These help reduce runoff, increase the amount of water that soaks
into the ground, and improve water quality. Whether your future city receives lots
of precipitation or a little, you’ll need to think creatively about managing stormwater.
THIS YEAR'S RESEARCH ESSAY CHALLENGE:
Identify a stormwater runoff problem that is important for your city to manage and
design a solution.
STORMWATER RUNOFF WEBINAR
LETS GET STARTED!
The national website has a step-by-step guide for moving through the RESEARCH ESSAY
component of the Future City Competition. You can visit that site or follow along
with the links below.
The video below is available on the national website and hosted on YouTube. It addresses
the importance of good communication skills and has tips for writing a successful
SAMPLE RESEARCH ESSAYS
Did you know you can read examples of past winning essays on-line. Looking at past
winners is a great way to understand what the judges look for and how to be competitive.
Sample essays can be found on the National website under the SHOWCASE section. Just
click on RESEARCH ESSAY in the FILTERBY section and update the results. Then click on
an image and click again to read the essay. You can also click on the link below:
The RESEARCH ESSAY RUBRIC explains the scoring of this important component of the
competition. You should review it prior to getting started and cross check with it
when your essay outline is fleshed out.
You will need to submit a RESEARCH ESSAY FORM as part of the paper work for the Competition.
This form can be found under Competition Forms in the column to the left or you can
download it by clicking on the link below: