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Co-designing publics: [re]producing the public realm via informal urbanisms in cities of the global south

Inam, Aseem ORCID: 2022. Co-designing publics: [re]producing the public realm via informal urbanisms in cities of the global south. Local Environment 10.1080/13549839.2022.2045481

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The viewpoint introduces the concept of “co-designing publics” by examining what lies at the potent intersection of the public realm and informal urbanisms, within the specific contexts of the cities of the global south. I define the public realm as interconnected spatial networks of public spaces intertwined with political structures that weave a city together, while informal urbanisms are the transactional conditions of ambiguity that exist between what is acceptable and what is unacceptable in cities. At their intersection are publics, who never simply exist because they are always created on an ongoing basis. In fact, publics are co-designed [i.e. co-created in inventive and multifarious ways] around common concerns or desire through volitional inquiry and action. I contextualise these discussions by paying particular attention to the cities of the global south, because place matters in shaping urban thinking and practice. There is an increasing interest in thinking and practicing from cities of the global south rather than just about them. The viewpoint then describes how these ideas were further investigated through grounded examples in different cities and articulated through interactive and collaborative events in the Co- Designing Publics international research network, funded through a grant awarded by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council. I then conclude with some thoughts on the implications of this work for urban theory and practice, which are applicable to cities in the global south as well as in the global north.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Architecture
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1354-9839
Funders: UK Arts and Humanities Research Council
Date of Acceptance: 16 February 2022
Last Modified: 10 Nov 2022 11:07

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