La iniciativa Cities are Us, del Centro de Studos Sociais de la Universidade de Coimbra, alcanza su clímax con la celebración del congreso ‘Rethinking Urban Inclusion: Spaces, Mobilisations, Interventions’. El evento presenta un panel de keynote speakers realmente interesante: David Harvey, Boaventura de Sousa Santos, Erik Swyngedouw, Ananya Roy o Álvaro Siza, entre otros. Quedan un par de semanas para remitir propuestas de ponencias. Más información aquí.
RETHINKING URBAN INCLUSION: SPACES, MOBILISATIONS, INTERVENTIONS to be held in Coimbra, Portugal, 28-30 June 2012
With almost half the world’s population living in cities, questioning the urban dimension of social inclusion and exclusion is imperative. Urban inclusion is increasingly influenced and often constrained by intertwined processes of economic globalization, state re-articulation, polarization and diversification of (local) populations and the political practices they add to the city. Educational, health and environmental inequalities, segregation, unemployment, lack of political participation, discrimination and the inability to deal with different forms of participation are all phenomena of exclusion with a local dimension but a multi-scalar nature. At the same time, acting towards social inclusion is developed around ideas, knowledge(s), experiences, resources and capacities which are (dis)located across an array of arenas and distributed among different actors. While traditional concepts and practices of urban inclusion centered on institutions and top-down decision-making seem inadequate to tackle this complexity, new ones are often in their infancy and may be in tension with more established policies. Contesting the centrality of the state and market pervasiveness, a new variety of counter-hegemonic positions and projects, and alternative visions of urban democracy and justice that inform bottom-up and participatory approaches to urban inclusion, have become popular in the Global South, while their transposition to cities in the Global North have met resistance or hardly gone beyond theorization.
The Conference aims to understand and ultimately rethink social inclusion at the urban scale, as the product of broader dynamics and the interaction of different actors and languages. How can we trace, define, and challenge the new subtle forms of social and territorial exclusion, trying to reinvent urban inclusion as a meeting space between local governance efforts and bottom-up initiatives? Is it possible to think a novel approach to understanding these changing cities, using as a ‘lever’ images of ‘the power of powerlessness’ and the struggles against/within established systems?
Within this perspective, the conference welcomes contributions balancing description, explanation, and prescription, with the aim to contribute to an ‘ecology of knowledges’ which could give visibility to new forms of collective action and community experimentation in reshaping cities in different contexts, in order to set the preconditions for a more solid horizon of social and territorial justice at both urban and extra-urban scales.
We invite participants to rethink urban inclusion along three intertwined axes: Space; Mobilizations; Interventions. Paper proposals should be received by 4 February 2012 and consist of: title, abstract (200 words maximum) and brief biography of author(s) (150 words).