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Organising committee: A team from Wageningen University, Delft University and the AMS-institute: Iulian Barba-Lata (AMS Institute/WUR), Marleen Buizer, Marlies Brinkhuijsen, Frank Wortelboer (Landscape Architecture and Spatial Planning), Clemens Driessen, Martijn Duineveld (Cultural Geography), Tamara Metze (Public Administration and Policy), Virpi Heybroek (the AMS Institute and Delft University).
AESOP thematic group representatives: Burcu Yigit Turan (SLU, Sweden), Sara Santos Cruz (University of Porto).
Committee of Advisors: Ceren Sezer (Delft University of Technology, Urbanism, also of the AESOP thematic working group on Public Space and Urban Cultures), Evert Verhagen, Arnold van der Valk.
AESOP Thematic Working Group Public Space and Urban Cultures Public Spaces and Urban Cultures (PSUC) is a thematic group established in April 2010 with the initiative of Sabine Knierbein (Associate Professor, TU Vienna, Austria), Ceren Sezer (Architect and
urban planner, TU Delft, Urban 4, Netherlands) and Chiara Tornaghi (Reader, Coventry University, United Kingdom). The main aim of the group is to generate an international and interdisciplinary exchange between the research and practices on public spaces and urban cultures. By doing so, it aims to support research, planning and a design agenda within the AESOP community, and beyond. Professor Ali Madanipour (University of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK) and Professor Sophie Watson (Open University, UK), generously contribute to the group’s activities with their wide expertise in the fields of public spaces and urban cultures.
From 2010, the Group continued its endeavors to involve practitioners, academics, governmental and non-governmental professionals, and further interest groups into the TG’s activities and exchange of knowledge across disciplines and domains of action through meetings, workshops, conferences, and roundtables. The group’s membership rose includes over 80 professionals working with public space, practitioners and researchers, from both Europe and beyond. The first umbrella topic was “Conviviality” (2011-2013) aimed at investigating the conditions in which public spaces accommodate or limit the initiatives organized on the streets as jovial and merry moments among local communities and other interest groups (events organized in Vienna, Ljubljana, Naples, Brussels, Belgium, Ankara, Lisbon); the second one was “Becoming local” (2013-2015), in which public spaces are intended as the arenas of conflict, negotiation and consensus that should allow vulnerable and marginalized groups to take a part in making of the city through individual and collective strategies (events organized in Istanbul, Medellin, Bucharest, Vienna, Paris, Rome, Glasgow, Prague, Oporto). Currently, the umbrella topic is “Unstable Geographies – Dislocated Publics” (2015-2018) and aims to explore the cities facing austerity, crisis, and a variety of migration patterns, and the civic responses to these situations in the form of self-organized practices, social innovation, and professional planning practices in building solidarity, hope, and trust (events organized in Lebanon, Vienna Ljubljana, Lisbon, Rome, Nicosia, Amsterdam, Gothenburg).