AESOP Thematic Group “Public Spaces and Urban Cultures”, Annual Meeting 11/2011

Local Coordinator: Gabriella Esposito De Vita, Thematic Group Coordinator: Nikolai Roskamm HostingInstitution: IRAT-CNR (National Research Council of Italy), Via Schipa 91, I-80122, Naples

Topic: Conviviality in Public Places: planning for Security and Multiculturalism

The contemporary city is affected by a profound crisis due to the loss of traditional social networks (with no alternatives), the loss of cultural identities (with no multicultural identities), the loss of a shared way of living spaces and places of the city (with no places for interactions and integrations), the loss of the sense of security (with no any management) - in sum, the loss of the city effect. Public places and spaces are the mirror of this scenario: places of public life are changing images, forms, functions, symbols and perceptions, following new trends superimposed by globalization phenomena. The privatization and commercialization of public and quasi-public places in affluent or well-connected areas of the city, on one hand, and the decay and abandonment of public places in deprived areas, on the other hand, are both causes and effect of the social transformations. The recent economic crash, transformation of the job- market, as well as dynamics and quantities of migratory flows are all strictly related to the tendency to live in gated communities and privatized public places dedicated to a forced conviviality. The idea of convivium could be the umbrella concept for surveying, interpreting, assessing, designing, managing public spaces as places of multicultural identity, security and security perception, democracy and discussions, ethic and aesthetic and human development. The conference – presenting different points of view: architecture, urban planning, anthropology, urban sociology, etc. – will be the place where research, education, marketing, production and politics can meet, improving sense of citizenship.

The specific area of Naples presents interesting aspects of organization, form and functions of public spaces: a historical center crowded and deprived peripheries affected by macro-criminality and the decay of streets, squares and parks. The Meeting could meet the demand of institutions, scholars and citizens for public spaces for building communities, improving security and reinterpreting identity.

Key actors: CNR, key universities of Naples, local governments, charitable associations, stakeholders from the diverse economic sectors and professional associations.


Venue: Villa Doria d’Angri – University of Naples Parthenope, Duration: 10th-12th November 2011

10th Arrival

18.00 welcome briefing 20.00 Come together

11th Meeting

Open Meeting

9.00 Welcome coffee
9.30 Opening session (one representative of the local institution and one representative of the TG) 10.30 Thematic session with invited scholars and local stakeholders (position papers on the Naples experiences and case studies on conviviality)
13.00 Mediterranean Lunch

Internal Meeting

14.00 Discussion/Presentations by the members of the TG (position papers on the different aspects of the theme of conviviality)
16.00 Discussion about the coming events of the Thematic Group and projects
21.00 Social event

12th Meeting/Excursion

10.00 Site visits and lunch (Positano or other coastal area)