Placemaking and Populism: Securing informed community participation in contemporary urban design

Wednesday 13 March 2019 - 15:15 to 18:45
Lecture Theatre 4, Dalhousie Building, University of Dundee

There is growing interest in the role of towns and cities in the sustainability of our fragile planet. Citizens need, indeed expect, greater knowledge and influence over the shaping of their places and spaces. How do we balance the populist appetites of the information age with the need for informed debate and deliberative action?

At a special half day symposium being organised by Academy of Urbanism and University of Dundee, supported by RTPI Scotland, Kevin Murray Associates and JTP, we will have a series of insightful international talks on:

Influencing the procurement of design knowledg  Eric Firley, Associate Professor at University of Miami School of Architecture

City design is no longer for architects, planners and urban designers, if indeed it ever was. The wider public have expectations, and even rights under the Aarhus Convention. How do we ensure good quality design for all is procured within public, private, community and partnership projects?

Typology and morphology of place - past lessons and future frameworks  Karen Cadell, AoU, AREA Urban Design & Architecture LLP (Partner)

The question of city form elements has sometimes been lost within a focus on object-buildings and style, amid modernistic regeneration. Historic components such as the plot, street and city block may still be crucial for securing durable urban design. What lessons can still be valid for 21st century urban formulation?

Embracing populist participation of contemporary city design  Stephen Willacy, AoU, City Architect at City of Aarhus

Most of the developed world currently experiences a tendency towards community activism and even divergent political extremes. What contribution has civic involvement around planning to make in order to build consensus around appropriate solutions? Or is the divide just one of urban and rural areas?

Participation - more than tokenism  Kevin Murray, AoU, Kevin Murray Associates (Director)

How do we address the demands of a population that feels increasingly empowered, whether information rich, or simply rich? How do we reconcile broad community interest with specialist of professional knowledge and insight in city-making? Can we diffuse power and achieve positive place?