[URBANTH-L]CFP: European City Seminars

Angela Jancius jancius3022 at comcast.net
Sun Dec 14 09:51:41 EST 2008

Call for participants: European city seminars

1) Bruxelles and Charleroi (Belgium), 13 - 16 March 2009.

2) Chemnitz, Chomutov and the Czech-German borderland, 10 - 20 July 2009.

It has been argued that there is something distinctive about a European City 
when compared to, for instance, an American city. The ´European City´ as a 
sociological concept relies on the idea that cities in Europe have 
demonstrated their power and willingness to make interventions for the 
prevention of social conflict and the good of it inhabitants. Often, these 
interventions took place against the strict financial logic or current 
global trends. In the 19th century, sewage systems and street lighting were 
first installed into the poor neighbourhoods and local councils choose to 
house people who weren't able to afford buying or renting property. The rise 
of the national (welfare) state to its strongest position somewhat reduced 
the power of cities, as many of the social institutions were transferred to 
the state. However, today, with pan-continental institutions and global 
economic forces coming to the fore, national governments have been weakened 
to a certain extent. The partial withdrawal of the welfare state again 
leaves local decision makers in an interesting position. What can and what 
will they do? How large is the space for independent policies? Are they 
forced to restructure the European City according to market principles, or 
will it become a corrective counter-force, which seeks to maintain social 
cohesion in places where the social fabric has been destroyed by economic 

With these statements in mind, the websites European City and Plotki and the 
Centre Bruxellois d'action interculturelle invite researchers, journalists 
and artists to participate in a unique project that will deal with social 
cohesion in European cities affected by de-industrialization.

Selected participants will participate at the following research seminars:

1) A three day-long research seminar in Bruxelles and Charleroi (Belgium), 
13 - 16 March 2009.

2) A ten day-long 'travelling' research seminar in the 'ex-industrial' areas 
of the Czech Republic and Germany. Focusing mostly but not exclusively on 
the two old-industrial cities of Chomutov and Chemnitz, researches will 
present and discuss their own papers and participate in field research in 
Chemnitz, Chomutov and the Czech-German borderland, 10 - 12 July 2009.

The programme is open for everyone living in a EU member state with good 
knowledge of English. Researchers (senior researchers, PHD and MA students 
in the widest range of social science including but not limited to 
sociology, geography, anthropology, history, cultural studies), journalists 
and artists (photographers and film-makers) are especially encouraged to 

Please express your interest by sending us your professional CV and a short 
motivation letter by email to europeancity at mkc.cz.Tato adresa je chránena 
proti spamování, pro její zobrazení potrebujete mít Java scripty povoleny 
The deadline is 31 January 2009. Thanks to support by the European Union, 
funding for travel and accommodation is available. Chosen participants will 
be informed by the 15 February 2009.

Ondrej Daniel, project coordinator,
europeancity at mkc.czTato adresa je chránena proti spamování, pro její 
zobrazení potrebujete mít Java scripty povoleny

The Project is organised by the Multicultural centre Prague, the Centre 
Bruxellois d'action interculturelle and Rejs e.V.. 

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