Graz Architecture Magazine GAM.15
GAM.15 will be dedicated to territorial justice. The notion of territorial justice relates to the spatial dimension of social justice; it refers to a system of spatial planning in which everyone is granted the same conditions of access to public goods and services (such as transport infrastructures, social services, health care, education, culture, employment) thus enabling access to the advantages of a societal network. As the gap between the richest and poorest members of society widens, a growing gulf between prosperous and relegated territories is physically manifesting itself; even in Europe. Bernardo Secchi, in his latest manifesto La citta dei ricchi e la citta dei poveri, invited urban researchers to embrace societal responsibilities by striving for territorial justice: “Urbanism,“ writes Secchi, “has to assume a major and clearly defined responsibility when it comes to questions concerning the aggravation of social inequalities.”1 For more than half a century now, the discipline of urbanism has operated on the basis of a growth-dependant paradigm. Its strategies have been based on market-led urban development and have sought to provide community benefits through market profits. The redistribution mechanisms have, however, failed or been eroded over time, leaving us in a state of territorial injustice. Yvonne Rydin, in her 2013 book about the future of planning,2 urges us to consider values beyond the economic which could considerably drive efforts and new methods in planning and urbanism. Along similar lines, Pierre Veltz draws attention to the “centrifugal effect” of the city3 and that in Western Europe, middle and lowincome households are expelled from cities, towards peri-urban areas, due to real estate speculation. Many of them find themselves in rural communes with few collective amenities, far from the job market. The difficulties of everyday life, in particular housing and transport costs, are, amongst other factors, responsible for the rise of protests in Europe. As Rem Koolhaas rightly speculated, negligence of the countryside and its on-going problematic transformation is possibly a reason for the global trend in populism.4 Governments, journalists, and scientists are focusing on the city, unaware of the dissatisfaction that lies outside of it. Many factors are contributing to the drastic transformation of extraurban areas: brain drain, fragile populations (due to disproportionately elderly, poorly educated, new migrant community members), lack of, and distance to, employment, automation of agriculture, or climate change. These current circumstances have resulted in the fact that the countryside, worldwide, is transforming faster than the city.5 And yet, our urban planning and urbanism disciplines often begin their utterances with the same mantra: “50% of the world’s population lives in cities”––as if the socio-spatial realities of the remaining 50% were not worth studying.
Therefore, GAM.15––“Territorial Justice” invites you to look at the territories outside cities through the lens of equality and justice and to explore types of urbanism that encourage the development of well-being, the access to educational, cultural, social and health care infrastructures, as well as energy, water, and green resources. This call invites architects, urbanists, planners, geographers, landscape architects and cultural theorists to provide perspectives that challenge the current system of planning by looking beyond an urbanism that depends on economic growth, thus fostering territorial equality and justice. Abstracts (max. 500 words) on the topic “Territorial Justice” can be submitted, along with a short biography, to firstname.lastname@example.org by May 7, 2018.
The submission deadline for finalized contributions is September 3rd, 2018.
1 “L'urbanistica ha forti, precise responsabilità nell'aggravarsi delle disuguaglianze.“ Bernardo Secchi, La città dei ricchi e la città dei poveri (Bari, 2013), p. VII.
2 Yvonne Rydin, The Future of Planning. Beyond Growth Dependence (Bristol, 2013).
3 Pierre Veltz, “Fractures sociales, Fractures territoriales?” in Metis, February 17, 2017, accessed online: January 20, 2018, http://www.metiseurope.eu/fractures-sociales-fractures-territoriales_fr_... 4 See Rem Koolhaas, „Countryside Architecture,“ in Icon, September 23, 2014, accessed online: January, 20, 2018, https://www.iconeye.com/architecture/features/item/11031-rem-koolhaas-in... 5 Ibid.