Dan Burden is the Director of Innovation and Inspiration at Blue Zones, as well as cofounder and former Executive Director of the Walkable and Livable Communities (WALC) Institute, a nonprofit organization that works throughout North America and the world to create healthy, connected communities that support active living and advance opportunities for all people through walkable streets, livable cities, and better built environments.
In his work, Dan brings together many disciplines and issues — such as street design, public safety, economic development and land-use planning — to create a holistic vision for healthy communities that are pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly. He is considered an international expert in walkability, bikeability, traffic calming, and road diets.
Burden has spent more than 40 years helping to get the world “back on its feet.” His efforts earned him the first-ever lifetime-achievement award, issued by the New Partners for Smart Growth and the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals. Additionally, in 2001, Burden was named by TIME magazine as “one of the six most important civic innovators in the world.” Also that year, he became Distinguished Lecturer for the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. In 2009, a user poll by Planetizen named him one of the Top 100 Urban Thinkers of all time.