Blog | Urban

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6. August 2022

“It is not possible to study space without exchanging ideas” — An Interview with CRC 1265 guest researcher Olena Kononenko on her life and research in Kyjiw and Berlin

Olena Kononenko

Olena Kononenko has been a guest researcher at the CRC 1265 since mid-May 2022. With Lucie Bernroider and Sarah Etz, she spoke about Kyjiw’s past, present and future, similarities and differences between Kyjiw and Berlin, her experiences at the CRC 1265 and her hopes for future returns – to both Kyjiw and Berlin.

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15. April 2022

Smart, Fortified, and Shifting Borders. Recent Developments in Borders and Border Control.

Dr. Fabian Gülzau

Territorial borders and border control are back on the political agenda. Globalization has not led to a world without borders. On the contrary, states have expanded the bordering function by fortifying borders, externalizing border control, and introducing digital “smart borders.” This blog post provides an overview of recent trends in borders and border control. The special issue “Borders as Places of Control. Fixing, Shifting, and Reinventing State Borders” of the journal Historical Social Research expands on these considerations.

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13. March 2022

Refigurierte Raumkontrolle

Dr. David Joschua Schröder

Am Kottbusser Tor soll eine sogenannte mobile Wache errichtet werden. Sieht man mal von den immer häufiger an öffentlichen Plätzen campierenden Mannschaftswagen der Polizei ab, die ebenso als mobile Wachen bezeichnet werden, wäre die mobile Wache am Kottbusser Tor bereits die zweite ihrer Art, denn sie soll sich die mobile Wache am Alexanderplatz zum Vorbild nehmen. Dort steht seit einiger Zeit ein rundherum kameraüberwachtes kleines Häuschen, das etwas größer ist als ein Baucontainer, jedoch nicht unbedingt ansehnlicher.

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12. November 2021

Automating vehicles is a solution for … what? Five theses concerning automation, public spaces and public involvement in an emerging technology

Volkan Sayman

In this article, I will present five theses concerning the ongoing race for bringing automated vehicles on public roads. Some of my theses are quite disillusioning, some provide hope for a better future of urban mobility with fewer private cars, some concern seemingly “technical” details. What underlies my thinking is the fact that in a field like automated driving, where technical and regulative norms are still evolving and being recalibrated, new technical norms introduce new social norms on our roads, and they enable wholly new patterns of mobility behavior. I study technological innovations as phenomena which are developed within society, within existing power relations, and within constantly changing societal norms and beliefs of what is a “good”, “achievable” or a “bad” future. In most cases, new technologies are presented as means for achieving a better future within a society.

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20. August 2021

Die fahrradfreundliche Stadt für alle? Überlegungen zu Ein- und Ausschlüssen der aktuellen Radverkehrsentwicklung in Berlin

Maximilian Hoor

Die Verkehrswende in Berlin scheint zum Greifen nahe und der Radverkehr erlebt seit Jahren einen rasanten Bedeutungsgewinn in Wissenschaft, Politik, Planung und Kultur. Der Beitrag greift aktuelle Entwicklungen des Radverkehrs auf und ordnet diese in den Kontext verkehrs- und stadtpolitischer Debatten ein. Es geht um die Frage, welchen Beitrag ein inklusiv gestalteter Radverkehr für die Verkehrswende und die lebenswerte Stadt leisten kann, und welche Herausforderungen sich dabei stellen.

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6. August 2021

Infrastructural violence in Johannesburg’s taxi industry

Silvia Danielak

Since the emergence of ride-hailing applications, South African urban centers have seen a rise in violence between the traditional metered taxis and the new ride-share services. Hundreds of criminal cases have been opened over the last years, and protests organized by ride-hailing drivers have drawn attention to the rising tension in the transport industry. A focus on urban infrastructure might shed new light on the history, politics and materiality of places that perpetuate violence in South Africa’s cities.

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13. June 2021

Cities under surveillance: on technologies, public space and racism in Brazilian capitals.

Paulo Victor Melo

Cameras on public roads, inside buses, trains, parks and squares; private video surveillance systems that also record street images; geolocation mechanisms; drones flying over large avenues; the use of artificial intelligence and facial recognition in different spaces of circulation of people. Urban public spaces are increasingly interwoven with information and communication digital devices and infrastructures. These transcend physical limitations and install mechanisms for gathering individual and collective personal data; they promote changes in social dynamics, aggravate territorial conflicts and expand the surveillance potential of cities.

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16. April 2021

Fluid boundaries of urban living spaces

Melissa Bayer

In the city of Antofagasta in Northern Chile, 16,396 people live in around 62 so-called informal settlements which lack basic service provision – with water access being the residents’ main concern. Drawing on extensive qualitative fieldwork carried out between 2018 and 2020, this blog post offers a hydro-social analysis of the informal practices of water acquisition employed by the residents of Antofagasta’s informal settlements. By taking into account both the material elements of these practices as well as their underlying logics and rationalities, the author aims to shed light on the reciprocal relationship between official water access and social belonging, paving the way for a more nuanced discussion of urbanisation processes.

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