The Urban Socio-Spatial Development cluster focuses on the making of cities and the interactions with and transitions within cities.
It addresses topics such as the creation and appropriation of urban space, civic engagement leading to transformations in the built and social environment, and the right to the city, focusing on the right to land and housing. The cluster critically reflects on the phenomenon of urban informality and assesses the social, spatial, economic and cultural impacts of urban dynamics. It pays special attention to inclusive urban development and gender issues in planning and housing. It investigates bottom-up and middle-out approaches to city-making. It also comprises self-administration and urban planning as disciplines established at the local level. The cluster highlights the inextricable link between urban planning and housing. It applies social, spatial and gender justice principles as a framework for analyzing urban processes and assessing projects, plans, and policies. It introduces the concept of housing justice and the principles behind attaining adequate housing to make just, inclusive and livable cities.
This thematic cluster requires an understanding of urban societies, the interaction of diverse stakeholder groups, gender, political economies and the dynamics of social interactions in space and time. It also includes the active transformation and conservation of space through urban renewal.
Typical questions relating to this cluster entail: How do urban communities develop? What characterizes the space created by urban societies? What are the links between gender relations and socio-economic and spatial processes in cities? To what extent can historic features accommodate urban transition? What are the impacts of housing and urban renewal on the social and economic life in the cities? To what extent do land, housing, and gender approaches in urban planning contribute to social and spatial justice?
Meet the Urban Socio-Spatial Development Department
Dr. Bahar Sakizlioglu | Specialist in Housing & Urban Sociologist
Bahar Sakizlioglu is a member of the Urban Housing, Equity & Social Justice team. Her main research interests are gentrification, displacement, housing, feminist urban studies, social reproduction and the city and comparative urbanism.
Ore Fika | Senior Specialist in Urban Land and Housing Development
Ore Fika is an urban land governance specialist and researcher with a background in architecture and project management. She focuses on land development strategies that enable the lower-income to have equitable access to land and housing.
Dr. Maartje van Eerd | Senior Specialist in Housing & Social Development
Maartje van Eerd is a Human Geographer by profession with extensive experience as a researcher, trainer and advisor on housing and social development issues. She has conducted extensive research on resettlement projects, forced evictions and acquisition.
photo by Mauro Mora on Unsplash.com