Friday, August 28, 2015

CfP: Digital-Cultural Ecology and the Medium-Sized City

Digital-Cultural Ecology and the Medium-Sized City
Conference: 01-03 April 2016
Place: Bristol, UK
Organisers: Architecture_MPS, CMIR, UWE
Venue: Arnolfini Centre for Contemporary Arts

Key Dates:
01st Nov 2015: Abstract deadline
01-03 April 2016: CONFERENCE
01st July 2016: Begin Publication of Full Papers
Conference proceedings online; Book publications in print; Special Issues of the Architecture_MPS journal.

Publisher: Intellect Books

In every country in the world medium-sized cities out number capital cities in both quantity and gross population. They are however, historically overlooked. In a digital and interconnected age these cities have the potential to by-pass capitals and challenge the hegemony of central economic and political organisations. They can form networks vastly more complex, intricate and numerous than the now standard group of connected ‘global cities’; can become self-sustained economically and culturally; and forge forward with new ideas in their specialist fields.

In this context, the present conference focuses on how the medium sized cities from across the world are adapting to the economies, practices and infrastructures of the digital age; how the interaction and communication of the digital message is reframing life in these cities, whether new or old; and how the digitization of the urban arena is changing the reality of the representation of city life.
In short, it asks what are the implications of the digital times in which we live, on the civic, cultural, economic and urban forum of medium-sized city.
It welcomes the participation of architects, planners, activists, artists, technologists, animators, filmmakers, cultural studies experts, programmers, gamers and more.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Friday, July 31, 2015

We Tact! Urban Imagineering and the Construction of Cool Cities workshop in Budapest!

CEU Workshop, September 30 - October 1, 2015

Image is everything. The way people, companies, causes and places are presented is increasingly deemed to be a key to success. City and neighborhood branding has become an urban policy tool; culture, history, aesthetics are consciously and creatively deployed in urban redevelopment projects. Many activities and places which had been considered uninteresting and better to hide have become ‘cool’ and sell well (street food, street art, slum tourism, red-light and entertainment districts, ruin pubs, lofts).
Image is everything. Or, perhaps not?

The Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology* in cooperation with the TACT network (International Research on Art and the City) is running a one-day workshop to critically engage with the discussion of urban imagineering—the process through which professional and non-professional urban actors actively generate specific images, narratives and symbols of the city and strategically use them in redevelopment,—the role of urban imagination in the construction of ‘cool’ cities, and its relationship with politics and economy.

* supported by the CEU Event Fund

Thursday, July 30, 2015

CFP : The City as Commons: Reconceiving Urban Space, Common Goods and Urban Governance

6-7 November, Bologna, Italy
Deadline: 10 August 2015 

This conference will introduce participants to the rapidly growing field of study on the urban commons, stressing the importance of an 'urban narrative for the commons' for urban assets or resources such as urban infrastructure, urban services and urban real estate. The conference also aims to bridge the gap between research and practice as it will bring together thought leaders who study or work on cities from different perspectives and disciplines (urban design, service design, law, urban economics, political studies, commons studies) to build a common language and cultivate a community for the study and practice of urban commons. The conference is organised by LabGov - LABoratory for the GOVernance of commons, a joint partnership between LUISS Guido Carli ICEED and Fordham University Urban Law Center, with the support of the City of Bologna and Fondazione del Monte di Ravenna en Bologna. 

PhD Studentship

The University of Manchester Department of Geography is pleased to announce a PhD studentship on the ESRC-DFID Poverty Alleviation project: "Turning Livelihoods to Rubbish? Assessing the impacts of formalisation and technologisation of waste management on the urban poor" (Empirical work in South Africa). The supervisor s Dr Erik Swyngedouw, known for his work in urban political ecology and analysis of the post-political condition. The deadline for applications is 20 August 2015. 
For full details and the application process, please email


Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Symposium - Urban Activism: A dialogue - East and West, North and South

The Symposium

We would like to bring in researchers from different disciplines and locality of origin who shared a common belief “in the potential for radical change of non-institutionalised urban political action” (Pickvance, 2003:104). We have also relaxed the term “urban (social) movement” and prefer the term “activism” to incorporate actions that are seemingly unconnected or be politically too sensitive to call themselves “movement”. Yet the actions we are interested should be symbolically or materially embedded in the political process but are not associated explicitly with established political processes or institutions.

There are also no limitations to the theoretical premises or type of empirical 

cases. What we intend to examine are:
  • New cultural meaning that enables local movements to increase the capacity to intervene in civic society.
  • The specific social, economic and political context that help to advance our understanding of urban activism
  • New issues, new perspectives to activism that has the potential in bringing social change
The symposium will be held on 20-21 March 2016 in City University of Hong Kong. Support on travelling and lodging for invited participants from outside Hong Kong will be provided. Yet participants who are able to fund their journey to Hong Kong are also welcome and lodging will be offered.

Submission of Abstracts

Abstracts are invited for the symposium. Such abstracts should be around 300 words and be sent via the following link before 30 September 2015. Notification of acceptance will be sent out before 1 November 2015. We are expecting an advanced version of the draft paper, at around 5000 words, be sent out for discussion on the symposium before 1 March 2016.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

If you are in Berlin ....Gütermarkt

3 May - 11 Oct 2015
Sundays from 12 until 19
Gütermarkt, a hybrid between craftsmen, DIY and flea market, looks for the imaginary and newly possible socio-economical models on the local scale. It involves diverse site-specific services, providing space for various ways of exchange and allow experimentation, social critic and productive discussions about current ‘urban development’ and transformation of Moabit. 
Beyond trading with ‘goods’, Gütermarkt promotes alternative ways of knowledge exchange, with an aim to serve as a local platform for critical urban pedagogy and community development. 
In this season, 2015 the Gütermarkt is build on 6 different conceptual islands to blur the official borders between the ZK/U Center for Arts and Urbanistic and the city park in order to create an inclusive space for unexpected social relationships. Additionally is the Gütermarkt inspired by a variety of different topics namely “holidays”, “education” or “communication”.
This is what you can do:
• Rent a market stand and sell your favourit things
• Craftsman offer their specific skills to repair and up-cycle
• Hello Kids! Bring your blankets, exchange and finally trade your Pokémon-Cards and Lilifee-Horses!
• Ideas, yes please! You want to offer a workshop or present your skills … Call us!
• Learn secret-skills of the local Boule-master and become Güterchampion in the Boulodrom!
No passion for forced - participation! Then your right here. Simply enjoy becoming a happy consumer of live music, culinary specialities from the neigh bourhood or let your pants, toaster and bike get fixed on spot.