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DepositGreen Dreams, Toxic Legacies: Toward a Digital Political Ecology of Silicon Valley

This article examines the ways that geohumanities approaches historical research aids in the study of environmental and urban history in one of the twentieth century’s fastest growing American urban centers. It explores how San Jose typified the challenges of Silicon Valley’s rapid urbanization and desire to chart a new form of industrialisation predicated on the ‘greenness’ of high-tech manufacturing and development. These issues are examined through a variety of mapping and GIS projects that seek to understand areas of cities threatened by natural hazards, to unveil the growth of cities over time, and how polluted areas introduced environmental hazards to social inequality. The article concludes that studies of urban areas cannot be separated from questions about the environment and its role in social justice, urban planning, and politics.

DepositMotivation behind Bicycling Habit in Sylhet City of Bangladesh

The study was conducted in the Sylhet City of Bangladesh. The purpose of the study is to explore the motivational factors behind bicycling habit in Sylhet. Analysis of secondary data and a focus group session with pioneer cyclists contributed in obtaining variables for the study. A sample of 100 respondents of Sylhet participated in this study. Judgemental sampling technique has been used to obtain data from self-administered structured questionnaire. Statistical analyses used in the survey are Exploratory Factor Analysis to identify factors and Frequencies for analysing demographic variables. The result of the study explains four factors. Findings show that the favorable factors towards cycling are Factor 1, Health and Factor 2, Convenience. Factor 3, Weather and Factor 4 Security are deterrent factors in cycling.The research findings provide wider scope for urban planning and catering of promotional strategies by bicycle marketers. In an overly populated country like Bangladesh, bicycling can give us a congestion free road and the plociy makers can grab this opportunity to make a better strategy for urban planning.

MemberNikos Pegioudis

Nikos Pegioudis is an art historian. He has received his PhD from the Department of History of Art at University College London (UCL) in 2015 with a dissertation titled ‘Artists and Radicalism in Germany, 1890-1933: Reform, Politics and the Paradoxes of the Avant-Garde’. In 2017-2018 he obtained a DAAD fellowship for a postodoctoral research project at the Freie Universität Berlin which was titled ‘Cultural Transfer in Architecture and Urban Planning: German Architecture and the Making of the Architect’s Profession in Greece, 1930-1950’. He has written various articles on the history of art, design and architecture in peer-reviewed academic journals and volumes. His main research interests are in German and Greek visual culture, architecture, the sociology of the avant-garde, politics of artistic professions, artistic labor and economic precarity.

MemberDebora Domingo-Calabuig

Débora Domingo-Calabuig graduated in architecture after studies in the School of Architecture of Valencia (Spain) and l’École d’Architecture de Paris-La Défense (France). With a specialized degree in Building Construction, she has practised architecture for many years, as an assistant architect, first and then founding her own office. During that time, her work has achieved critical recognition and has been published, both for its built projects and awarded competitions. In 2005 she obtained her doctorate at Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV). She joined the Department of Architectural Design at UPV as an assistant professor in 2000, where currently she is a full professor. She has taught design studio at all undergraduate and postgraduate year levels, also been responsible for seminars and specialized workshops. She supervises assiduously PhD research theses and other research dissertations. She is fluent in Spanish, Catalan, French, and English. She held the position of Assistant Director for Research from 2012 to 2016 and was Editor in Chief of the “VLC arquitectura” Research Journal its launch to 2018. She is also a Research Academy member of the European Association for Architectural Education. Dr Domingo-Calabuig research focuses on social consideration in architecture and urban planning design, particularly in West-European post-war contexts of the 60s and 70s and with regard to changes in higher education and new campus planning.

Deposit“Taxi Pirates”: A comparative history of informal transport in Nairobi and Kinshasa, 1960s –2000s

The chapter presents a comparative history of two African cities notorious for the way their informal transport systems are regulated by different actors. It looks at how small private (often unlicensed) transport operators took over public transport in the 1950s and 1960s, their efforts at self-regulating and the efforts of informal workers to organise. It traces problems plaguing the industry – and often attributed to the (mostly) young men working in the sector – back to colonial urban planning, which provided few avenues for Africans to move around in the city. The further development of the industry, it argues, has been hampered by government interference, often for political reasons and/or to participate in skimming off profits from the sector. The chapter is based on documents from unions, NGO and government reports, newspaper articles and interviews with informal transport workers from Nairobi and Kinshasa. A focus on historical processuality highlights the dynamics of the sector’s development, which lie in the interactions between city administrations, workers’ organisations and workers themselves. Tracing the history of the industry and workers’ struggles through the last half-century thus provides us with new perspectives on the history of neoliberalism, the African city and labour.

DepositMusic, theatre and the nation :the entertainment market in Lisbon (1865-1908)

The development of the Portuguese entertainment market and the rise of several types of musical theatre are inextricably bound to the complex symbolic and material process through which Portugal was established, presented, developed, and commodified as a modern nation-state between 1865 and 1908. During this period, several fundamental transformations that merged urban planning, everyday life, and modernity took place in Lisbon. In this process, leisure activities began to include new forms of music theatre (such as operetta and the revue theatre) that became an important site for the display of modernity, representing and commodifying the nation. Despite its colonial possessions, Portugal was a peripheral European country where modernity developed in a specific way. The commodification of music associated with both music publishing and mechanical music fostered the creation of a transnational market for goods in a period when most of the trade was conducted with or within national economies. In this context, the Portuguese entertainment market reflected a particular form of negotiation between the local, the national and the global levels, in which gender, class, ethnicity, and technology intertwined with theatrical repertoires, street sounds and domestic music making.

MemberFrans Prasetyo

 Frans Ari Prasetyo (fransariprasetyo@gmail.com) is an independent researcher and photographer. His interests are the evolution of urban politics, culture and sub-cultures, artists and underground activists, using a methodology that is strongly community-research based and relies on urban culture/planning, visual anthropology/ethnography. He join in Ethnography Lab – University of Toronto

DepositSHINING CITIES. Gender and Other Issues in Urban Development for the Twenty-First Century

In the twenty-first century, the majority of people are living in cities—at least this is the credo communicated frequently. This statement has been strengthened by the “urban renaissance” that dawned at the beginning of the twenty-first century and by a globally evident increase in capital investment in urban-development projects. Such planning endeavors are conveyed to the public, the political sphere, and the media with the help of Internet platforms. The visualizations and descriptions found on such project websites are associated with promises of modernization, appeal, and economic growth—in short, with a better life. In this publication, images and texts from 12 projects planned for Europe, Africa, and Asia are surveyed critically: What do they “tell” about future life in these new urban districts? Who will live and work in these cities? Which forms of living and lifestyles are propagated? And most importantly: How do these designs relate to actual urban reality, including that of the inhabitants to whom the projects are addressed? Written in a comprehensible way, supplemented by illustrations and photographs, this in-depth analysis sensitizes the reader to the interconnections between urban-space production and societal (gender) relations.