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The University of Southampton
Geography and Environmental Science

The Urbanisation of Responsibility Seminar

26 November 2014
Lecture Theatre B Shackleton Building 44. Chair: Dr Nick Clarke

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Dr Nathaniel O'Grady at N.O' .

Event details


Both nationally and internationally, ideas such as ‘the urban age’, of ‘future cities’, ‘the urban century’ and ‘planetary urbanization’ are increasingly widespread across many fields of policy, practice and activism. This project investigates the contemporary framing of the twin challenge of changing cities: the idea that cities and urban processes are rapidly changing, and in turn the idea that this creates new imperatives to transform urban processes in more efficient, just, or resilient directions. The framing of this challenge marks a shift in the intellectual focus for academic research on urban processes. ‘The city’ is now investigated and theorised by a range of interdisciplinary and often non-academic fields that exceed the conventional homes of urban research. The proliferation of urban concern has generated distinctive styles of urban knowledge, including: critical urban theory, which seeks to conceptualise ‘the city’ or ‘the urban’ as a coherent object of analysis in debates on ‘planetary urbanization’, the ‘new urban question’, ‘comparative urbanism’, and ‘urban assemblage’; discrete literatures on topics such as cities and climate change, ‘smart cities’, the right to the city, cities and innovation, or ‘conflict cities’; specialised practice-oriented concerned with developing design-based, behavioural, or engineering solutions to varied urban challenges; and specialised fields of scientific research on topics such as urban water management or urban life and mental health.

Speaker information

Professor Clive Barnett, University of Exeter. Department of Geography

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