среда, 20 марта 2013 г.

The European City: is there still a distinctive European model of urban governance?

IV EUGEO Congress, Rome, 5-7 September 2013 (http://www.eugeo2013.com/)
Conference Session

*The European City: is there still a distinctive European model of urban governance?*

Session organisers:
Ugo Rossi (ugo.rossi@unito.it) and Alberto Vanolo (alberto.vanolo@unito.itUniversity of Turin, Italy

A decade ago, French political scientist Patrick Le Galès published the highly influential book entitled European Cities. Social Conflicts and Governance (2002, Oxford UP; in French: Le retour des villes européennes. Sociétés urbaines, mondialisation, gouvernment et gouvernance, 2003, PUF, Paris), in which he identified a distinctive European model of urban governance, based on the aggregation of, and the compromise between, conflicting interests and their crystallization within territorialialized governance structures. The influence of this book has transgressed established disciplinary boundaries, attractinginterest from scholars belonging to a variety of social sciencedisciplines concerned with urban as well as European integration issues, including human geography.

Ten years later, one cannot fail to notice how European cities have been experiencing dramatic changes since Le Galès wrote his seminal book. In particular, over the last five years European cities have been increasingly grappling with the consequences of the turbulences of global markets, the crisis of the ‘eurozone’ and the related exacerbation of the North-South dualism. With varying intensities, municipal governments as well as urban economies across Europe have indeed been affected by the economic downturn and the austerity measures being imposed at national and supranational levels.

In response to the global economic crisis as well as to pre-existing climate change challenges, cities understood as ‘collective actors’, according to Le Galès’ approach, and particularly their politico-economic elites have increasingly committed themselves to the pursuit of governance strategies aimed at enhancing the economic and environmental resilience of urban societies. These strategies entail the adoption of economic development goals largely originating from ‘elsewhere’ and most typically from the extraterritorial global space of policy circulation, such as the reduction of carbon emissions, the eco-restructuring of the built environment, the embrace of smart and creative growth pathways. The governmental rationality and the related goverance structures of European cities have been adapting to these changing economic-political conditions, particularly leading to the deterritorialization of urban policy formation and the strategic repositioning of actors, pro-growth coalitions and discourses of urban economic development.

This session interrogates to what extent these recent changes question the distinctive European model of urban governance identified by Patrick Le Galès. In order to do this, paper submissions are invited touching on these issues (but not limited to these):

- The relationship between the restructuring of urban economies and governance structures across Europe in the wake of the global economic crisis;
- The changing governance structures and strategies in Europe in relation to evolving urbanization patterns;
- Emerging spatialities of urban governance across Europe: city-regions, intermunicipal cooperation, cross-border conurbations;
- The globalization and neoliberalization of urban governance across Europe: policy mobilities and hegemonic models;
- The environmentalization of urban governance: the incorporation of carbon emissions reduction targets, sustainable housing and smart growth planning principles into local policy agendas and the governance implications;
- Authoritary vs. participatory governance: urban social movements, social conflicts and the negotiation of governance processes.

Please send an abstract (no longer than 200 words) to s32@eugeo2013.com
as well as to the session organisers by the 31st of March.

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