Conference Agenda

RN37_08: Spatial segregation in cities
Thursday, 22/Aug/2019:
6:00pm - 7:30pm

Session Chair: M. Victoria Gómez, University Carlos III Madrid
Location: BS.G.33
Manchester Metropolitan University Building: Business School, Ground Floor Oxford Road


Methodological Considerations for Exploring Marginalized Urban Experiences: A Qualitative Geospatial Approach

Natalia Martini

Jagiellonian University, Poland

Inspired by Nishat Awan’s critical remark on the task of imagining cities that has for too long been the preserve of the privileged and the powerful, this presentation addresses the question of how to make the conditions necessary for editing back the neglected spatialities of the city into our accounts of urban space. Through reflections from an on-going study on the homeless city, that focuses on portraying the city as it manifests itself in the practical course of everyday life of its homeless dwellers, this presentation considers methodological possibilities for exploring and presenting marginalized urban experiences opened up by incorporation of geospatial technologies into qualitative urban inquiry. It discusses the potential of a methodological practice of walking supplemented with location-aware technology, i.e. Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) software, for facilitating better understanding of how marginalized urbanites navigate their ways through the city, how they negotiate social boundaries and address material barriers, and how these practices mark spatial patterns of their (non)belonging in the city. This presentation demonstrates how narrative, visual and spatial data generated whilst walking may be brought together within GIS, and how its analytic and representational power may be taken advantage of for better understanding of how the lack of privilege in paced out through the city. It suggest that the combination of the walk-along method with geospatial technologies offers new ways of approaching spatial forms of inequality in the city.

“That thing they call a ghetto”: Distinctions in a Stigmatized Neighborhood in Copenhagen

Christian Sandbjerg Hansen

Aarhus University, Denmark

In this paper, I investigate the social divisions and stigma management in a tainted area in Copenhagen, known as the Northwestern, currently transforming as the “new” gentrified area in the city. On the backcloth of the political economy of place in the contemporary capital of the Danish welfare state, I draw on an interview sample to analyze the residents lived experience, sense of belonging and everyday place-making in a publicly blemished territory. I highlight four main principles of vision and division that structure the resident’s perception and appreciation of their place: The golden past versus the stigmatized present, the immigrants versus the Danes, the welfare clients versus the ordinary citizens, and the future hipsters and creatives versus the old residents. I argue that the management of the territorial stigma must be seen in light of these structuring principles and in relation to the trajectories of the residents.

Profits of Trans/locality? Spatial Segregation and Practices of Organizing Resources in Times of Translocal Mobility and Communication

Daniela Krüger, Robert George Vief, Henrik Schultze, Talja Blokland

Humboldt-University Berlin, Germany

Increasing mobility changes how and where people access goods and services. These practices of organizing resources still are an expression of social inequality, but translocal mobility and communication challenges the way scholars have imagined urban inequalities to date. Studies conclude that social and spatial inequality coalesce and find expression in an unequal spatial distribution of resources, goods and services – that are said to lack in marginalized neighborhoods.

Pierre Bourdieu (2018 [1991]) introduced the concept of spatial profit to refer to the interrelation of space and social position. Profits result: (1) as the proximity to desired infrastructures, (2) as position through the symbolically beneficial address and (3) the profit of occupying space to keep undesirable goods or people at bay.

In our presentation we scrutinize and broaden the idea of spatial profit as a profit of bounded localization. We assume that the concentration of desirable goods and services occur in specific neighborhoods, but investigate whether people also profit from the ways they use social relations and organize resources, goods and services considerably independent of locality. Thus, we suggest overcoming the spatial determinist thinking that people are restricted to the goods and contacts they are spatially surrounded by. We show for whom different spatial scales can be effectively used by presenting first results from a representative quantitative survey in four Berlin neighborhoods. The survey was conducted in the ongoing research project “'The World Down My Street: Resources and Networks Used by City Dwellers” (DFG-funded interdisciplinary Collaborative Research Centre 1265 ‘Re-Figuration of Spaces’).

The Politics Of Territorial Stigmatization

Troels Schultz Larsen1, Kristian Nagel Delica2

1Roskilde University, Denmark; 2Roskilde University, Denamrk

This paper analyses how social symbolic and material struggles over the city and especially the neglected and stigmatized territories are tightly linked to struggles over the reconfiguration of the state. The object is to draw up a preliminary construction of a field of urban politics – here in the case of Denmark: This construction offer an analysis of how different power and knowledge hierarchies play a pivotal role in the continual transformations, which the different solutions to urban stigmatization have affected – both in terms of professional categorizations and in terms of drawing and redrawing the social and symbolic boundaries in the city but also in terms of new moralities- and forms of local belonging and citizenship. As such focus is neither on the city nor on the state par se but on how the city and the state and their post-crisis transformation are intimately linked. On this backdrop, it is possible to outline a new socio-spatial configuration that reforms Harveys (1989) entrepreneurialism by combining it with new forms of authoritarianism both in the city and at the level of the state. Theoretically and methodological this study is inspired by Bourdieus reflexive sociology highlighting relations of symbolic power and its inscription in the city (Bourdieu 1991; 1999; Wacquant 2008; 2009; 2016). Empirically we combination a macro analysis of policy documents and a microanalysis of structured relational biographic interviews with 47 projectmanagers engaged in territorial de-stigmatization work in practice. Based on this we flesh out the contours of the new authoritarian governance of urban marginality as politics and practice.