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Socrates

Socrates

NEW PERSDPECTIVES ON THE PROBLEM OF THE PUBLIC

A two day conference hosted by the Centre for the Study of Democracy, Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster.

Dates: Thursday 15 and Friday 16 May 2014
Venue: Board Room, 309 Regent Street, London

This inter-disciplinary conference brings together researchers from media, technology studies, law, sociology, planning, geography and political theory to discuss the implications of the rise of new strands of pragmatist, complexity and new materialist approaches to democracy and the public sphere. We have five keynote presentations – from Clive Barnett, Andrew Barry, Jon Coaffee, John Law and Sarah Whatmore – and four panels, discussing new perspectives on the conceptualisation of public space, the construction and emergence of publics, and the relevance of post-human, actor-network and new materialist approaches to how we might rethink the spaces and practices of the public today.

Attendance is free and refreshments will be provided. If you wish to attend please register with Eventbrite here: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/new-perspectives-on-the-problem-of-the-public-tickets-10448111583?aff=eorg

Provisional Programme:

THURSDAY 15 MAY

9.00 REGISTRATION

9.30-10.45 – KEYNOTE

John Law (Professor of Sociology, Open University)
title to be confirmed

10.45-11.00 COFFEE

11.00-12.30 – PANEL 1 – PUBLIC SPACE

Regan Koch (Department of Geography, University College, London)
Justifications of public and private: Notes from the not-quite-public spaces of underground restaurants
Manuela Kölke (independent researcher)
Ontological registers as the medium of convergence between political theory and spatial disciplines
Antonia Layard (University of Bristol Law School)
The Legal Production of Public Space (or not)
Nikolai Roskamm (Institut für Stadt- und Regionalplanung, TU Berlin, Germany)
The in-between of public space: Sitting on the fence with Hannah Arendt

12.30-1.30 – LUNCH

1.30-2.45 – KEYNOTE

Clive Barnett (Professor of Geography and Social Theory, University of Exeter)
Emergent Publics

COFFEE

3.00-4.30 – PANEL 2 – CONSTRUCTED AND EMERGENT PUBLICS

Nick Mahony and Hilde C. Stephansen (Centre for Citizenship, Identities and Governance, The Open University)
What’s at stake in Participation Now? Exploring emergent configurations of ‘the public’ in contemporary public participation
Helen Pallett (Science, Society & Sustainability group, University of East Anglia)  Producing the publics of UK science policy: public dialogue as a technology for representing, knowing and constructing publics
Yvonne Rydin and Lucy Natarajan (Bartlett School of Planning, University College, London)
Materialising public participation: community consultation within spatial planning for North Northamptonshire, England
Peer Schouten (School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden)
The infrastructural construction of publics: the Janus face of representation by international actors in Congo

4.30-4.45 BREAK

4.45-6.00 – KEYNOTE

Sarah Whatmore (Professor of Environment and Public Policy, University of Oxford)
Experimental Publics: Science, Democracy and the Redistribution of Expertise

RECEPTION & SPEAKERS DINNER

FRIDAY 16 MAY

10.00-11.15 KEYNOTE

Andrew Barry (Professor of Human Geography, University College, London)
Material Politics and the Reinvention of the Public

11.15-11.30 COFFEE

11.30-1.00 PANEL 3 – BEYOND THE SUBJECT

Andreas Birkbak (Department of Learning and Philosophy, Aalborg University, Denmark)
Facebook pages as ’demo versions’ of issue publics
Gwendolyn Blue (Department of Geography, University of Calgary, Canada)
Animal publics: Political subjectivity after the human subject
Ferenc Hammer (Institute for Art Theory and Media Studies, Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary)
The Hungarian Roundabout and Further Settings for the Authoritarian Subject: Technologies of Self-Governance in Everyday Practices
Jonathan Metzger (Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden)
Moose re:public – traversing the human/non-human divide in the politics of  transport infrastructure development

1.00-1.45 LUNCH

1.45-3.15 PANEL 4 – MATERIAL PUBLICS

Lindsay Bremner (Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, University of Westminster) The Political Life of Rising Acid Mine Water
Ana Delgado and Blanca Callén (Centre for the Study of the Sciences and the Humanities, University of Bergen, Norway)
The making of obsolescence: how things become public in the age of precariousness
Michael Guggenheim, Joe Deville, Zuzana Hrdlickova (Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths, University of London)
The Megaphone and the Map: Assembling and Representing the Public in Disaster Exercises
Owain Jones (Environmental Humanities, Bath Spa University)
Is My Flesh Not Public? Thinking of bodies and ‘the public’ through water

3.15-3.30 COFFEE

3.30-4.45 KEYNOTE

Jon Coaffee (Professor in Urban Geography, University of Warwick)
Citizenship and Democracy in the City 2.0: Balancing the Quest for Resilience and the Public Interest in Urban Development

4.45-5.00 BREAK

5.00-6.00 CONCLUDING DISCUSSION
David Chandler, Professor of International Relations, Director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy, Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster, 32-38 Wells Street, London, W1T 3UW. Tel: ++44 (0)776 525 3073.
Journal Editor, Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/resi20
Book series Editor, Routledge Studies in Intervention and Statebuilding: http://208.254.74.79/books/series/RSIS/

Book series Editor, Routledge Advances in Democratic Theory: http://www.routledge.com/books/series/RADT/
Amazon books page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/David-Chandler/e/B001HCXV7Y/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Personal website: http://www.davidchandler.org/

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

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Utopia

WORLD COMMUNAL HERITAGE MANIFESTO

Since the so called victory of western neo-liberal capitalism, communal services and public space are being predatory privatized. It’s our task to stop the destructive appropriation of communal heritage by the tycoons! Before the words public and communal fade away from our vocabulary we want to remind of one great achievement of the 20th century: equally accessible public space. Here we are not referring to the public space as the place of representation for the state and its elites, such as public squares or state cultural institutions.
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We think of the non-proprietary communal space created around the Modernist apartment-blocks often – though not always – built at the periphery of urban centers.
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From France to the Soviet Union, Modernist town planning and public housing was driven by the idea of securing equal access to urban infrastructure, to light, air and green space. The solution were high-rise apartment-blocks that left a lot of open space for communal facilities such as schools, kindergartens, community houses with playgrounds, sports fields, pathways, and meadows in between the developments. These park-like spaces, immediately outside the dwelling, are available to all in equal measure and open for everybody’s use.

Let us constitute those open spaces as political space! There are no safeguards or fences that could slow down your pace! You can gather together without paying a fortune for the gentrified lifestyle in the inner-city! The openness, porosity and communicability of Modernist social architecture and landscaping that takes shape in a wealth of free space, pedestrian pathways, bridges, passages, niches, little woods and bushes is giving possibility of direct action, so let’s take it:
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Between the blocks, social movements are born! Obviously some part of society perceives this potential as a security risk that is hard to control. In former welfare-states, Modernist multi-storey apartment-blocks are being violently condemned and – like the Heygate Estate in London – are being torn down to make room for new buildings for wealthier clients. According to the same profit-driven logics, the city authorities in former socialist states sell open communal spaces to private investors that use them for the purposes of individual exploitation.
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The World Communal Heritage campaign supports communities and individuals that want to organize and take action to prevent the destruction of communal space in their neighbourhoods.
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We affirm the idea of common goods that are managed by the community and we acknowledge the communal as heritage that must be further developed by the community – and not by individualistic interests.
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Therefore we call to organize and to take over the future of the communal spaces in our hands!

Join in the World Communal Heritage Campaign!
Any communal, open space can be nominated by citizens, individuals, groups or communities as World Communal Heritage.

We initially present several spaces that bear the attributes of World Communal Heritage. These are communal spaces in the following micro-raions, housing estates or satellite towns: Botanica, Rîºcani and Buiucani in Chiºinãu (Moldavia), Heygate Estate in London (United Kingdom), Block 70 and Block 63 in New Belgrade (Serbia), Gropiusstadt in Berlin and Langwasser in Nürnberg (Germany).

We invite everyone interested to nominate and affirm their additional suggestions!

You can use the stickers, the logo and material for the initiation of a new campaign anywhere in the world.

You are invited to self-organize and to install a panel indicating that a space is acknowledged as World Communal Heritage Site as shown on the pictures from New Belgrade and Chiºinãu.

World Communal Heritage is an initiative by Rena Rädle & Vladan Jeremiæ to affirm the open spaces of Modernist urbanism as non-proprietary communal heritage.

WCH: http://communalheritage.wordpress.com/

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Just Space

SPACES OF ALTERITY

Conference: Call for Papers

Spaces of Alterity: Conceptualising Counter-Hegemonic Sites, Practices and Narratives

University of Nottingham, UK
28th-29th April 2011

Confirmed Plenary Speakers:

China Miéville and Dr. Alberto Toscano

This two day international conference for postgraduate and early career researchers explores interdisciplinary conceptions and representations of radical, counter-hegemonic space.

As concerns grow over such issues as spatial privatisation, commodification and homogenisation, surveillance, extra-legal spaces, social and political ‘non-spaces’, and the loss of common or public spaces, so too a plethora of interventions—across genre and disciplinary boundaries—have been launched in opposition to these trends. Examples are diverse, and can be found, for example, in literary studies of estranging narratives in contemporary fiction; spatial representations in film, TV and new media; the creation of critical spaces of alterity in political activism (such as semi-autonomous zones); psychogeographical spatial strategies, and philosophical and theoretical conceptions of counter-hegemonic space.

We invite proposals for papers of 20 minutes from candidates across the arts and humanities, welcoming individual papers as well as group panels that respond to these and other conceptions of counter-hegemonic “Spaces of Alterity”. Possible research questions include, but are not limited to:

    • What estranging utopian, dystopian, post-apocalyptic and science fiction spaces of alterity are being utilised in contemporary aesthetic and cultural productions, e.g. film, literature, TV, art, computer games?
    • How do these narratives travel across media and what changes occur when they are adapted, reworked and transformed? What research questions are raised by such collaborations, transmissions and intermedial dialogues?
    • How can we approach traditionally-understood print and audio-visual texts in relation to virtual spaces of alterity, such as fan-based communities, social networking sites and other sites developed through user-generated content (UGC)?
    • What are the relationships between textual spaces of alterity and non-textual forums, communities and dialogues?
    • What physical spaces of alterity are being constructed in contemporary urban environments?
    • How are such spaces critical, oppositional or subversive and how do they draw on the contributions of local communities and organisations?
    • How do spaces of alterity which are informed by traditionally-understood “texts” function on the Internet and how can they inform our understanding of filmic, visual and literary textual methodologies and approaches?
    • What forms can counter-hegemonic, avant-garde, or ‘subtractive’ spaces—which can be spatial, but also temporal or conceptual—take?
    • What political, artistic, or scientific practices can such spaces foster? How does distance from institutions help form alternative political, literary and artistic practices?

Abstracts of 250-300 words should be sent by email as a Word attachment to spacesofalterity@gmail.com by Wednesday 3rd November 2010 and should include name, affiliation, e-mail address, title of paper and 4 keywords.

Conference website: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/cultural-studies/research/conferences.aspx

Speakers:

China Miéville is a distinguished “Weird Fiction” novelist, activist, and lecturer in creative writing at the University of Warwick. His publications include King Rat (1998), Perido Street Station (2000), and Iron Council (2004). In 2010 he won the Arthur C. Clarke Award for an unprecedented second time with his latest novel, The City and the City (2009).

Alberto Toscano is senior lecturer in Philosophy at Goldsmiths, University of London. He has published extensively on social and political subjectivity, biopolitics, and the philosophy of Alain Badiou. His most recent work is Fanaticism (2010, Verso)

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Privatization

THE PRIVATIZATION OF PUBLIC SPACE? RESISTING ENCLOSURE

Neoliberalism continues to transform public space in geographically uneven and variegated ways, with far reaching and profound consequences.  On the first day, the conference will provide context for various means of privatization and elaborate on language and visions for discussing this issue.  On the second day, workshops will bring together students, activists, artists, and organizations engaged in imagining and practicing new and creative means of resistance to the new round of enclosures taking place on a global scale.

Day 1 Conference: Wednesday, April 21, 2010 Elebash Recital Hall, CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue, New York City

9:00 a.m. Introduction and Welcome – Setha Low, President; William P. Kelly; and Provost Chase F. Robinson of CUNY Graduate Center

9:30 – 11:00 a.m.
Privatization of Public Space: Historical and Contemporary New York City – with Sharon Zukin, Gregory Smithsimon, Andrew Newman

Break

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Reconsidering Privatization: Neoliberal Strategies, Securitization and Privacy – with Kevin Ward, Setha Low, Kurt Iveson

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Lunch

2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Beyond Public and Private: Privatization and the Global Fiscal Crisis – with Neil Smith, Katherine Verdery, Bill McKinney

Break

4-5:30 Visions of the Future: Race, Class and Gender – with Mindy Fullilove, David Harvey, Cindi Katz

5:30-6:00 p.m.

Wrap up and further discussion

6:00-7:00 p.m. Reception

Day 2 Workshops: Thursday, April 22, 2010 Rooms 5414 and 5409 (5th Floor) CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue, New York City

To RSVP for Day 2, find us on Facebook (search “resisting enclosure”) or RSVP by sending an email to resistingenclosure@riseup.net! RSVP is not require d for entrance but helps us make sure we accommodate everyone! (Please include any special needs information.)

9:00 a.m.  Registration

9:30 a.m. Opening discussion, with David Harvey

10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Workshop 1:  Anti-Gentrification and Community Self-Determination, with CAAAV’s Chinatown Tenants Union and Picture the Homeless Workshop 2:  Artistic Interruptions in Everyday Life, with Dara Greenwald, Manu Sachdeva, Jeff Stark and Jordan Seiler

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Lunch (on site)

1:15 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Workshop 3:  Neoliberalism, Securitization and Enclosures in South Asia, with Ahilan Kadirgamar, Biju Mathew, Preeti Sampat and Saadia Toor

Workshop 4: The University and the Commons, with Silvia Federici, Malav Kanuga, Mary Taylor and the Coalition to Preserve Community

3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
“Asking We Walk”: Collective Theorizations/Mapping Emancipations?

5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Recept ion

Free and Open.  Food and refreshments will be provided.

Sponsors:
Public Space Research Group at the Center for Human Environments, Center for Place, Culture, and Politics, Ph.D. Programs in Earth and Environmental Sciences and Sociology, Doctoral Students’ Council, SpaceTime Research Collective (STRC) and the South Asia Solidarity Initiative (SASI)

Organized by:
Setha Low, The Graduate Center, CUNY; Kevin Ward, University of Manchester; Lalit Batra, Doctoral Student in Earth and Environmental Sciences; Fiona Jeffries, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Center for Place, Culture and Politics; Erin Siodmak, Doctoral Student in Sociology; Laurel Mei Turbin, Doctoral Student in Earth and Environmental Sciences

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The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Privatization

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