IstanbulWith the support of INTA, Istanbul Aydın University and TALA, the Turkish Association of Local Authorities, the Regional Council of Calabria organised an International Seminar on “Challenges and Opportunities in Multiethnic Cities:” in Istanbul, Turkey. The Seminar assembled 150 key-actors from Europe and the Mediterranean including local decision makers, operators and contractors as well as representatives from national governments. Together they  addressed the challenges posed by multiethnic cities, in particular the urban integration of foreign communities into the sustainable development process. The Seminar was structured around 4 main topics to appropriately address four critical challenges: Economic integration, Socio-cultural integration, Active citizenship, and Spatial Planning / Urban Space – Managing migration and urbanisation.

 


Scope Statement

Cities are places where most social relationships can be shaped by urban planning and development. Management and development of multiethnic cities pose a number of challenges, in particular the redefinition of urban space in relation to the integration of migrant communities. This seminar, that takes advantage of the outcome of a 3-year co-operative initiative under the INTERREGIIIC programme of the European Union, will offer a review of the recent conceptual progress and the proposed tools and practices for the management of multiethnic urban environments. Several critical questions came to the fore when addressing the complex web of issues related to multiethnic cities.
The Seminar aims to assemble 150 key-actors from Europe and the Mediterranean including local decision makers, operators and contractors as well as representatives from national governments. Together they will address the challenges posed by multiethnic cities, in particular the urban integration of foreign communities into the sustainable development process.

The Seminar will be structured around 4 main topics to appropriately address four critical challenges: Economic integration, Socio-cultural integration, Active citizenship, and Spatial Planning / Urban Space – Managing migration and urbanisation.
Economic Integration
  • One of the immediate results of global interconnections and movements appears to be the proliferation of borders, security systems and checkpoints, physical and virtual frontiers. This phenomenon can be observed both at the micro-level of our surroundings and on the macro-scale of global flows. Therefore the main question is how to fight segregation, how to reduce pockets of social exclusion, discrimination and violence in the urban economic sphere?
  • Globalisation also leads to an increased competition of city regions, being the nodes in the global ‘space of flows’ – of people, goods, finances and knowledge. As innovation becomes more and more important and high skilled employees get rare, city regions compete internationally for the so called ‘creative class’. In order to attract these people, the living and working conditions in a city region play a significant role as soft location factors. – How can a positive living and working environment be created? Which role do ethnic factors play as specific requirements for the quality of life of migrants, which role have ethnic economies as facilitators for the daily life of migrants?
Socio-cultural integration
  • Observation of the recent transformation in the Mediterranean. Through a series of case, local investigations, sampling of innovative social, economic and cultural phenomena, a new human geography is emerging.
  • The atlas of the contemporary situation of the Mediterranean picture the various shifts in the Region leading to a system defined more by separation, division and control.
  • A critical issue is that of the production of Public Space for multiculturalism: how to reconcile cultural diversity and urban integration, avoiding the double trap of forced assimilation and ghettoisation? How to acknowledge and enhance community-based settlement patterns and models of social organisation? How to give a common meaning to urban settings and facilities accessible to different communities, and open public spaces for trans-cultural exchange?
Active Citizenship
  • Borders is the other side of globalisation. Borders are, in fact, all around us. They are conventional and geographical, abstract and real, ordinary and controversial. By looking simultaneously at the flows (of people, goods, ideas) and territorial restrictions, the complexity of individual and collective identity is revealed, constructed and diffracted by the act of crossing borders.
  • Access to social services epitomises the principle of active citizenship. How to re-shape public services and institutions in order to make them available to culturally heterogeneous publics?
Planning of Urban Space
  • A way to focus on these issues is the urban scenes of social relations; how to take into account the wishes of the migrant communities into the city fabric. That would concern the residential areas of the visiting communities and their main areas of interaction - commercial, cultural and religious centres- in order to comprehend the characteristics of integration and cultural contamination.  Specifically, it would involve comparing the methods of planning and organising commercial areas by gathering information on the forms of integration between the host culture and the visiting ones.
  • How to elaborate and diffuse models for the systematic management of migration and urbanisation flows, improving relations and interactions between countries of old immigration and of recent immigration?

 

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Association Internationale de Développement Urbain

Une association internationale de membres qui partagent connaissances, expériences et savoir-faire pour un développement urbain intégré.  // EN SAVOIR PLUS