Conflict, Improvisation, Governance presents a carefully crafted and edited collection of first hand accounts of diverse public sector and non-profit urban practitioners facing the practical challenges of "doing democracy" in the global/local context of the interconnected major European city of Amsterdam and its region. The book examines street level democratic processes through the experiences of planning and city governance practitioners in community development, youth work, public service delivery, urban public administration, immigration and multi-cultural social policy. These profiles and case studies show widely shared challenges in global and local urban environments, and new, "bottom-up," democratic and improvisational strategies that community members and public officials alike can use to make more inclusive, democratic cities.
Table of Contents
1. A Bias for Practice: Stories of Improvisation in Governance 2. Challenges and Opportunities of Street Level Democratization, Improvisation, and Conflict 3. Conflict as a Stage for Improvisation in Governance Part One: Complexity and Improvisation in Governance 4. Developing Vision to Inform Demolition and Renovation in Vlardingen’s Housing Association: A Profile of Ellen Hiep 5. From "Gosh, This is Really Great. Now I Know What to Do!" to Launching Small Initiatives, Going Step by Step: A Profile of Simen van der Goot 6. "And No One, No One, Wants to be Denied," Community Rebuilding After Disaster: A Profile of Joop Hofman Part Two: Learning to Change Communities 7. The Significance of Building Relationships in Neighbourhood Work: A Profile of Willem Giezeman 8. Community Building in the Face of Distrust: A Profile of Tonie Boxman 9. The Evolution of the Amsterdam Think Tanks: A Profile of Mercedes Zandwijken 10. Social Imagination and Community Development: A Profile of Frans Geraedts Part Three: Immigration and Challenges of Diversity 11. On Radicalization and Social Cohesion: The City of Amsterdam’s Responses to the Murder of Theo van Gogh Seen Through the Eyes of Marian Visser and Joris Rijbroek 12. Challenges of Immigration, Radicalization, and Integration: A Profile of Halime el Madkouri 13. On Conflict, Community and Governance: A Profile of Martien Kuitenbrouwer Part Four: Rethinking Administration 14. Managing Multiple Agency Collaboration and "Multi-problem Families" in Amsterdam: A Profile of Erik Gerritsen 15. There’s Always a Way Out—and Finding It Together: A Profile of Henri Kardaun 16. Making Participation Work—Seeing New Angles and Other Possibilities: A Profile of Douwe Wielenga Authors’ Conclusion
David Laws is Associate Professor (UHI) in the Department of Political Science and Director of the Centre for Conflict Studies at the University of Amsterdam.
John Forester is a Professor and ex-Director of Graduate Studies at Cornell University’s Department of City and Regional Planning.