This is a general invitation to all those interested or active in urban resistance to gentrification, displacement, mega-developments and privatisation to participate in our event - The Right to Stay Put:
Contesting Displacement to Urban Regeneration and Development Schemes - as part of this year's RSG-IBG Conference in Manchester in August.
The Right to Stay Put: Contesting Displacement in Urban Regeneration
Friday 28th and Saturday 29th August
Venue: Ida Kinsley Village Centre, 17 Guide Post Road, Grove Village, Manchester M13 9HP
A Participatory Geographies Working Group event as part of the Royal Geographical Society / Institute of British Geographers Annual International Conference - see www.rgs.org
Free admission / open to public
Description of event:
It is now 25 years since Chester Hartman first advanced the notion of the 'right to stay put' for lower income group struggles against gentrification. Since then, gentrification and related processes of privatisation and marketisation have become integral to neoliberal urban strategies across the world. Despite this proliferation, academics have generally responded poorly to Hartman's call to arms. Rather, as Slater observes (2006, 2008), gentrification research has generally lost its critical edge, and from some quarters gentrification has even been celebrated as beneficial to incumbent low-income groups (Freeman, 2006; Vigdor, 2002). This is not our experience and with this session we seek to restore Hartman's principle to the heart of gentrification research by inviting contributions from activist geographers in the widest sense of the term (academics, teachers, housing professionals, campaigners, trade unionists and ordinary residents) to share and exchange their experiences, insights and methods to better defend people's 'right to stay put'. In the spirit of making geography 'relevant' beyond the policy-academy complex, the session will have a practical orientation and will offer reflections, stories, tactics, lessons and strategies for developing successful urban resistances. The aims are to: (1) share experiences and develop practical knowledges about what works in urban resistance; (2) create an educational space for encounter and dialogue between those involved in similar critical work and activism; and (3) start to develop an action research network and a knowledge/resource base for wider dissemination.
A variety of speakers will recount stories of regeneration and resistance from around the world, including London, Berlin, Zurich, Mumbai, Istanbul, Toronto, Dublin, Chicago, Glasgow, Melbourne, South Africa, Möllevången as well as addressing questions of building (un)successful local and global networks of opposition and creating alternatives.
The event will have 4 main sessions:
Sessions 1-3 will take place on 28th August. Session 4 will happen on 29 August.
Session 1 (11am-1.40pm) explores gentrification and displacement in action.
Sessions 2 (2.40pm-4.20pm) and 3 (4.50pm-6.30pm) explore resistance in action.
Session 4 (10.30am-lunch-3pm) explores how we can develop local to global strategies, networks and alternatives and will be split between papers and an open roundtable 'working' discussion. It will be followed by a tour of Manchester's urban development and struggles, and then a social-benefit event in the evening with films.
Full details, including venue directions and programme, on www.autonomousgeographies.org/righttostayput
Details of the other amazing Participatory Geographies events being put on at the Ida Kinsley Village Centre during the RGS-IBG conference can be found here: http://www.pygywg.org/news/rgsibg2009.htm
Chris Allen (Manchester Metropolitan University), firstname.lastname@example.org Lee Crookes (University of Sheffield), email@example.com Stuart Hodkinson (University of Leeds), firstname.lastname@example.org Tom Slater (University of Edinburgh), email@example.com
Dr Stuart Hodkinson
School of Geography
University of Leeds