Traditional approaches to understand space tend to view public space mainly as a shell or container, focussing on its morphological structures and functional uses. That way, its ever-changing meanings, contested or challenged uses have been largely ignored, as well as the contextual and on-going dynamics between social actors, their cultures, and struggles. The key role of space in enabling spatial opportunities for social action, the fluidity of its social meaning and the changing degree of "publicness" of a space remain unexplored fields of academic inquiry and professional practice.
Public Space and Relational Perspectives offers a different understanding of public spaces in the city. The aim of the book is to (re)introduce the lived experiences in public life into the teaching curricula of those academic disciplines which deal with public space and the built environment, such as architecture, planning and urban design, as well as the social sciences.
The book presents conceptual, practical and research challenges and brings together findings from activists, practitioners and theorists. The editors provide eight educational challenges that educators can endorse when training future practitioners and researchers to accept and to engage with the social relations that unfold in and through public space.
Cover image: KARO*
Table of Contents
1. Relational Public Space. New Challenges for Architecture and Planning (Sabine Knierbein and Chiara Tornaghi), Part I. Conceptual Challenges. Re-addressing public space in a relational perspective (Chiara Tornaghi and Sabine Knierbein), 2.Relational Ontology of Public Space and Action-orientated Pedagogy in Action: Dilemmas of Professional Ethics and Social Justice (Chiara Tornaghi), 3.Public Space as Relational Counter Space – Scholarly Minefield or Epistemological Opportunity? (Sabine Knierbein), Part II. Practical Challenges. Exploring Innovative Tools in Teaching Architecture and Planning (Sabine Knierbein and Chiara Tornaghi), 4. Creating Mobile Media and Social Change? (StefanieWuschitz), 5. A Gaming Layer Entwined into the Everyday Life of Public Space (JörgHofstätter, JochenKranzer and TihomirViderman), 6. Playfully Creating Public Spaces of Opportunity (Wolfgang Gerlich and EmanuelaSemlitsch), Part III. Research Challenges. Innovating Curricula by Learning from Lived Space (Sabine Knierbein and Chiara Tornaghi), 7. Public Spaces, Experience and Conflict: The Cases of Helsinki and Tallinn (Panu Lehtovuori, Andres Kurg, Martina Schwab and Siri Ermert), 8. Cultural Interventions in Urban Public Spaces and Performative Planning – Insights from Shrinking Cities in Eastern Germany (Uwe Altrock and Sandra Huning), 9. From Classrooms to Learning Landscapes. New Socio-spatial Imaginaries of Learning and Learning Spaces (Ian Banerjee), Conclusion 10.Educational challenges (Sabine Knierbein and Chiara Tornaghi
Chiara Tornaghi is Researcher and Teaching Fellow at the School of Geography, University of Leeds, UK. In 2009, she was the City of Vienna Junior Visiting Professor at the Centre for Public Space and Urban Culture (SKuOR), Vienna University of Technology, Austria.
Sabine Knierbein is Assistant Professor for Urban Culture and Public Space (tenure track) at the Department of Spatial Planning, Faculty of Architecture and Planning at Vienna University of Technology, Austria. She has directed the Interdisciplinary Centre for Urban Culture and Public Space since 2008.
"The book is a springboard for further exploring and critically reflecting upon our roles as educators, our positionality as practitioners, and the opportunities we have as users to influence urban spatial processes and to perpetuate innovative time–space uses in everyday urban life." – Christine Mady, Urban Studies, Notre Dame University, Lebanon
"A particular highlight is the focus on playful methods and innovative pedagogical tools that enable students to learn in, about and from public space, as well as the everyday practices and everyday knowledge inscribed into them." – Julia Wesely, Environment & Urbanization