Opportunity – Call for paper on the “City as political space”

3 May


New call for paper from the Journal of Architecture and Urbanism on “City as Political Space”.

Contribution will include:

  • Consequences of 2008 financial crisis for Western cities
  • Contemporary architecture and political ideologies
  • Architects and urbanists as technocrats or social and political activists
  • Beyond TINA (There is No Alternative): cities and socio-political experimentation

Deadline for submissions 15 November 2013. The guest editor is Krzysztof Nawratek. Submission can be done through the Journal website.


In recent years mainstream architecture and urbanism has drifted away from any kind of political engagement, because of the logic of TINA (There Is No Alternative) architects were forced to became just ‘cogs’ in the neoliberal socio-economic machine. They were expected to produce colourful effects to please consumers, lend clients an image and in turn secure capital investment. However, the financial crisis of 2008 created cracks in this logic and opened up possibilities to re-introduce the political and socio-political agenda for architecture and urbanism. Architecture is a creative discipline, but for some years now the architects ‘use’ of creativity was often limited to new technology. Yet, the financial crisis has opened up a much wider spectrum of possibilities and architects can now (again!) engage with socio-political and economic issues. Several projects presented at the Venice Biennale 2012 (for example the USA pavilion and “Working with the 99%” project by ateliermob) and also several recent books (for example “Spatial Agency. Other ways of doing architecture” by Nishat Awan, Jeremy Till and Tatjana Schneider or “The Possibility of an Absolute Architecture” by Pier Vittorio Aureli) show, in very different ways, new paths for the future – the architecture of engagement – social, political and economic. The “CITY AS POLITICAL SPACE” issue of the Journal of Architecture and Urbanism is looking for papers that focus on aspects of architecture and urbanism that critically and creatively experiment with new socio-political and economic models.


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