This report tries to answer the question What is Urban Cultures? and subsequently outlines what a research field called “Urban Cultures” should consist of. By focusing on Urban Cultures, both as a theoretical concept and as a more practical standpoint, this report aims to uncover tools and knowledge that might be used both within urban planning/development and scientific work aiming to influence urban life.
Authors: Daniel Gillberg (ed), Ylva Berglund, Göteborg City Museum; Helene Brembeck, Centre for Consumer Science, University of Gothenburg, Olle Stenbäck, Dept of Cultural Sciences, University of Gothenburg.
Published by Mistra Urban Futures.
EXCERPT - During the last ten years, urban culture studies have evolved as an interdisciplinary research field within urban research. This focuses on the intersection of daily life with the surrounding material, discursive, and social landscapes – the reciprocal relationship of how urban life is shaped by and, in turn, shapes the urban environment. This includes cultural practices but also spatial embodiment, i.e., the shaping of the material landscape, structures, and physical space in which urban life unfolds. Do-it-yourself (DIY) urban design and urban sports are examples of common themes. Culture is here understood in terms of possibilities. Topological approaches provide a set of tools to analyze how different kinds of change can be stimulated with network-building, spontaneity, and self-organization being considered primary engines for change. Humans are conceived of as constant “becomings,” with the potential for lifelong growth and development. Society is seen as rhizomatic, organic, and constantly unfolding. […]