Radical Urbanism

Three interesting conferences have taken place in the US with regards to the pressing question of Henri Lefebvre’s idea of ‘the right to the city’. All three raise the question of ‘whose city is it anyway?’ and how to implement a radical urban programme.

The concluding remarks of the ‘Radical Urbanism Conference’, December 12, 2008, at CUNY, featuring Peter Marcuse, Margit Mayer, Susan Fainstein and David Harvey are viewable on YouTube.

A year later, the City University of New York (CUNY) Institute for Urban Design also hosted a Radical Urbanism conference.

More recently, the University of California Santa Cruz hosted ‘Whose City? Labor and the Right to the City Movements’ (Feb 26, 2011), again featuring the fabulous geographer David Harvey.

It’s great to see so many conferences dealing with this issue — and I’m sure there have been more. Their focus on urbanism and capital is important. The Barcelona DHS conference will, I think, open up questions of design and history that offer further layers to Lefebvre’s maxim and enrich the debate.

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