LED Online Seminar 2018 - Working Group 8

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Dear working group members. This is your group page and you will be completing the template gradually as we move through the seminar. Good luck and enjoy your collaboration!

Assignment 1 - Reading and Synthesizing Core Terminology

  • You can read more details about this assignment here
  • Readings are accessible via the resources page

Step 1: Your Landscape Democracy Manifestoes

Step 2: Define your readings

  • Please add your readings selection for the terminology exercise before April 18:

A: Landscape and Democracy

Lynch, Kevin. (1960): The Image of the City, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press (STEFAN FROM MAGDEBURG / GERMANY)

Burckhardt, Lucius (1979): Why is landscape beautiful? in: Fezer/Schmitz (Eds.) Rethinking Man-made Environments (2012)(Sudhara)


B: Concepts of Participation

Davis, Mike (1990): Fortress Los Angeles: The Militarization of Urban Space , From: City of Quartz: Exca (Fiona)

LIFEscape Handbook on Participative Landscape Planning (Amir)


C: Community and Identity

Gafford, Farrah D. (2013): It Was a Real Village: Community Identity Formation Among Black Middle-Class Residents in Pontchartrain Park, Journal of Urban History 39:36 (HO SIN YEE)

Welk Von Mossner, Alexa (2014):Cinematic Landscapes , In: Topos, No. 88, 2014. (Fiona)

Culture and Changing Landscape Structure (Amir)


D: Designing

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2013): Places in the Making: How Placemaking Builds Places and Communities (HO SIN YEE)

Kot, Douglas and Ruggeri, Deni:Westport Case Study (Fiona)

Designing with immigrants (Amir)

Hester, Randolph: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Sustainable Happiness (Sudhara)


E: Communicating a Vision

Goldstein, B. E., A. T. Wessells, R. Lejano, and W. Butler. 2015. Narrating Resilience: Transforming Urban Systems Through Collaborative Storytelling. Urban Studies. 52 (7): 1285-1303. (HO SIN YEE)

'Reading the Landscape' by Simon Bell, EMU Tartu (Sudhara)


Games in urban planning examples

Stadtspieler: http://www.stadtspieler.com (STEFAN FROM MAGDEBURG / GERMANY) Block By Block: http://blockbyblock.org/about (STEFAN FROM MAGDEBURG / GERMANY)

Apps, webpages, toolkits

EngagementLab - From playing games, to making media, to running campaigns https://elab.emerson.edu/about (STEFAN FROM MAGDEBURG / GERMANY)

Participedia - catalogue and compare the performance of participatory political processes https://participedia.net/en/about (STEFAN FROM MAGDEBURG / GERMANY)

Steps 3 and 4: Concepts Selection and definition

  • Each group member selects three relevant concepts derived from his/her readings and synthesize them/publish them on the wiki by May 9, 2018
  • Group members reflect within their groups and define their chosen concepts into a shared definition to be posted on the wiki by June 6, 2018.
  • Other group members will be able to comment on the definitions until June 12, 2018
  • Each group will also report on their process to come to a set of shared definitions of key landscape democracy concepts on the wiki documentation until June 20, 2018

Concepts and definitions

HO SIN YEE (Alisa)

  • (C: Community and Identity) (Gafford, Farrah D. (2013): It Was a Real Village: Community Identity Formation Among Black Middle-Class Residents in Pontchartrain Park, Journal of Urban History 39:36)

CONCEPT ONE: Community and identity building depends strongly on shared childhood and adolescent memories among individuals, which are created by attending religious, cultural and family functions within the neighborhood. The resulted communal bonding can be long-lasting, and it plays an important role in the resilience of a community after traumas.

  • (D: Designing) (Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2013): Places in the Making: How Placemaking Builds Places and Communities)

CONCEPT TWO: Placemaking is more about doing it but not just focusing on the planning phase. It is about trial and error, as well as improvement, which make it more powerful than the seemingly best planned solution. One important thing to note is the making process never ends, as it involves the actual usage and maintenance after the accomplishment of design and construction.

  • (E: Communicating a Vision) (Goldstein, B. E., A. T. Wessells, R. Lejano, and W. Butler. 2015. Narrating Resilience: Transforming Urban Systems Through Collaborative Storytelling. Urban Studies. 52 (7): 1285-1303. )

CONCEPT THREE: Shared vision and experience among a place are enhanced by planning with different ways of understanding. Therefore, narrative is a good way to address the symbolic and subjective meanings of wellbeing, which enforcing the ability to gather various opinions and allowing self-initiated processes to decide what improvements should be done for whom.


Sudara Jayalath: ...

  • Concept ONE (A:landscape democracy;mapping the terrain)_Burckhardt, Lucius (1979): Why is landscape beautiful? in: Fezer/Schmitz (Eds.) Rethinking Man-made Environments (2012)

Existence of a Landscape: "Landscape is a Construct". There is no 'absolute objective reality', where an absolute landscape exists.The existence of a landscape is relative, its relative to the perception of the observer. Perception of the observer is a production of his/her own memory, experience and knowledge. But the knowledge is a production of a particular epistemology which structured out via a specific way of thinking due to a specific cultural conditions, which are defined by landscapes.

  • Concept TWO (D:Designing)_ Hester, Randolph: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Sustainable Happiness

Resilient Form: Adaptability, bare-ability of a human habitat called as a resilient form. A human habitat could exist in various forms according to temporal land utilization. Due to evolution of utility, functional conception or natural state a habitat have to adapt for the next state of existence. For this existing form is important. A habitat with this adaptable form can be called as a resilient form.

  • Concept THREE (E:Communicating a Vision)_'Reading the Landscape' by Simon Bell, EMU Tartu

Landscape Character: Landscape is a process, series of situations, which take place one after one in to a particular order. This order has a unique, or spot specific behavior which reflects (characterize) via each situation. Each situation projected out as a combination of different layers which are dependent on each other. As some examples Geological, Geo-morphological, Ecological, Anthropological, Communication, Visual and so on. The character of a landscape is the condition, dominate characteristics of each layer in a particular time.


Author 3:Stefan Köder

  • CONCEPT ONE: Concept "Five Elements" (1960) by urban theorist Kevin Lynch(A: Landscape and Democracy) (Lynch, Kevin. (1960): The Image of the City, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press)

Study how observers take in information of the city, and use it to make mental maps. Lynch's conclusion was that people formed mental maps of their surroundings consisting of five basic elements

Lynch's Five Elements:

1) Paths These are the streets, sidewalks, trails, canals, railroads, and other channels in which people travel; They arrange space and movement between space.

2) Edges Boundaries; They can be either Real or Perceived; These are walls, buildings, and shorelines, curbstone, streets, overpasses, etc.

3) Districts Medium to large areas that are two-dimensional; An individual enters into and out of these areas; Have common identifying characteristics.

4) Nodes Large areas you can enter, serve as the foci of the city, neighborhood, district, etc.; Offers the person in them multiple perspectives of the other core elements.

5) Landmarks Points of reference person cannot enter into; These are buildings, signs, stores, mountains, public art; Mobile Points (such as Sun) can be used as well.

Critical view on this image concept: [...] the relation of people to the city goes beyond perceptual recognition and introduces the role of ideology. In short, the inhabitant of the city does not adapt to an environment [by a perceptual knowledge of form, note from Dr. Kirsten Wagner], rather, residents play a role in the production and use of the urban milieu through urban practices."[Gottdiener, Mark; Lagopoulos, Alexandros Ph., Introduction, in: Gottdiener; Lagopoulos, The City and the Sign (wie Anm. 7), S. 1-22, here S. 7]


  • CONCEPT TWO: Games (board game) as a tool: “Playful ways to a spirited society”: To promote creativity, partecipation and processes of communication, competencies and development; to inspirate and support the exchange of different interests and points of view, thematical approaches and the development of new ideas and ways of society works on an individual and a common level; for empowerment and promotion of communication and networking(E: Communicating a Vision / Games in urban planning examples) (Stadtspieler: http://www.stadtspieler.com)

These games became an official project of the UN-Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. Since 2004 these games have been tested successfully in a lot of projects in the spheres of urban and rural development, youth work and human resources development in enterprises and organisations.

Idea of the game: The city of XAGA seems to have come to a standstill. The city needs new impetus in order to give the city a vibrant future. How can one persuade investors, the citizenry and visitors to give the city development renewed energy? The municipal authorities of XAGA have a wonderful idea: All interested inhabitants and/or investors are given some pieces of land in the city. Furthermore, to enhance the renewal of the city building materials (plasticine) are provided. From this, new buildings and green areas, interesting ideas and projects are implemented. Then, if the publicity is right, the first curious visitors and inhabitants come to look at everything. Each player takes on the role of inhabitant as well investor. By actively engaging in both roles the players ensure that the city of XAGA becomes a vibrant city once more.


  • CONCEPT THREE: Create an innovative programme in which Minecraft is used as a community participation tool in the design of urban public spaces. For: United Nations programme for sustainable cities. (E: Communicating a Vision / Games in urban planning examples) (Block By Block: http://blockbyblock.org/about)

Idea: Experiences from projects all over the world show that Minecraft is a great tool for involving people, particularly youth, women and slum dwellers in urban design. Through participatory design workshops, UN-Habitat and partners bring people together to visualise their ideas in Minecraft, and present these to city authorities and local government officials. The Minecraft designs are then used as part of the process of implementing real public space improvement projects.

Backgound: Block by Block is a charity set up in 2016 by Mojang and Microsoft to support UN-Habitat’s work with public space and Minecraft. The purpose of Block by Block is to raise funds for the improvement of public spaces worldwide, with a focus on poor communities in developing countries.


Author 4: ...

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Fiona Nyadero

B: Concepts of participation

Reading: Davis, Mike (1990): Fortress Los Angeles: The Militarization of Urban Space

  • Concept 1: Right to the city landscape

Definition: An obsession with security in urban areas has led to the creation of social boundaries through architectural and electronic means. This result in the sealing off certain areas to some groups of people, especially the urban poor.

Attempts of ‘securing the city’ has led to the destruction of public spaces. The streets are unlivable for the urban poor; minimal-surface benches, strategic outdoor sprinklers, refuse enclosures, few public lavatories and lack of outdoor water sources. As a socio-spatial strategy, buildings are cut off from the streets in an attempt to keep the poor away. Investment and development is encouraged in prime areas while the minority are quarantined in the unwanted, undeveloped areas. Enclosed communities are on the rise, and residents insist on restricted access to their public facilities for fear of attracting criminals-the urban poor. The security systems used may not deter professional criminals, but they keep innocent ‘unwanted’ people away. Privatization of public space and corporate redevelopment projects create stark divisions of class and race within the city landscape. Development occurs at the cost of the urban poor. Criminalization of the use public space for survival further impoverishes them. Designers apply the Panopticon (a concept used for the model prison in the 18th century) in public spaces. The police force -the defenders of the community- lacking intimate knowledge of the people, rely on technology and surveillance. City officials use spatial and social urban segregation to control crowds and to create harmonious and self-regulating communities. Contemporary architecture and the police force ensure ‘undesirables’ are filtered out of homogenous crowds meeting in one place for, say shopping. The police restricts rights of public assembly and freedom of movement due to the fear of crowds. Consequently, inner cities look like prisons and fortresses.

C: Community and Identity

Reading: Weik von Mossner, Alexa (2014): Cinematic Landscapes

  • Concept 2: Landscapes provides the setting for a community.

Definition: Just like what is depicted in films and movies, the landscape provides the space in which activities take place, thus playing a very active role in the community’s narrative/ way of life.

For instance, a disenfranchised community struggling for survival in wetland area live lives that are greatly dictated by their environment. As outsiders, we would see them as a resilient and stubborn people, but in truth the people have formed an identity with their crisis landscape and cannot see an alternative lifestyle that they would adapt to anywhere else. The risks and dangers in their landscape only serve to bring them together; the community survives because of their genuine concern for one another, creating a sense of belonging and identity.

D: Designing

Reading: Kot, Douglas and Ruggeri, Deni: Crafting Westport: How one small community shaped its future

  • Concept 3: Participatory democratic design process

Definition: Participatory design is an iterative process that builds on the values and needs of the community. The design teams gains understanding of the people and this informs the process, tools and final design. It is about building upon rather than reacting to the idiosyncrasies of a place. The process is like crafting: constantly refining and adjusting the design to the needs of the community. The results inspire a stronger sense of ownership from the community.

The community development framework put across by Randy Hester enables residents to participate actively rather than accept solutions from non-resident professionals. The process involves the following steps: • Listening to the residents through interviews, resulting in a clear set of goals for the community and the site. • Organizing workshops for various activities; first to educate the community on community participation in design and the extent of involvement required of them. • The workshop also introduces the community to itself by summarizing the inventory findings and the interview data to the residents, to clarify any misrepresentations and establishes dialogue. • The participants review, confirm, set and prioritize the goals, using the Nominal Group Technique (NGT) to come up with a list of prioritized goals. • The residents then map out activities (events, places and things that are part of the community’s collective memory) through citing and sketching. This serves to note the current activity patterns and interactions. • The participants develop a program to measure the design alternatives. Using figure-ground maps and cutouts, they locate activities currently not taking place in the area; resulting in simple design proposals. • The walking tour reveals information such as, interactions among neighbors, unique traditions and habits, design opportunities, as well as personal experiences in the ‘sacred’ and controversial sites. Moreover, it enables the team to test the decisions against spatial and environmental constraints. • The team uses the summarized reports and information gathered to come up with alternative plans, which are presented to the community. The community then gives feedback through discussions and mail-in surveys. • The team analyzes the feedback and incorporates it in the final plan.

Step 5: Reflection

A: Landscape and Democracy (Sudara): Landscape is the home of every single living organism. Even though the most of the definitions of Landscape has been established in an anthropocentric ways, human merely playing the same role as all the other living beings on the earth. (weather its a planet or not). And what people mostly forget is they are just a product of their environment and they are just a fantastic form of materials which eventually become the "outside world" as they experience according to their self centered sensation as a separate individual from the whole. As we see the nature in everyday life, and according to numerous segregated fields of Knowledge such as Ecology, Biology and etc, the diversity does the balance. Its not Bio-equality its Bio diversity which maintenance the perfect balance of the system. In the same way its obvious that when the diversity has a potential existence the balance is better. The point is,whether it is obvious to say that everyone has a right to live in there environment. Its more a knowledge than a right. According to me, even though the word 'Democracy' is not the appropriate word to create this balance, in the sense of communicating this message to general public there is a need of finding a method of peaceful existence. To create this state with a proper balance, its better to focus on a timeless concept at least seemingly. A way that people can see that the individuals are important in the sense of nature, but not in the sense of ego.

B: Concepts of Participation (Fiona): Obsessing over security in urban areas has led to the creation of social boundaries through architecture and technology. This results in the destruction of public spaces as we attempt to keep the urban poor away from the ‘middle-and-upper-class’ of the society. Cities, especially the downtown areas, become unlivable through intentional design. At the neighborhood level, buildings are cut off from the streets and the low-density neighborhoods are increasingly becoming enclosed to keep off people who do not belong. The restriction of the rights of public assembly and freedom of movement due to fear of crowds as well as the use of borrowed military technology and concepts in the design of public spaces often lead to cities looking like prisons and fortresses.

C: Community and Identity (Fiona): Community identity is built on shared childhood and adoscelsent memories among a people. The bonds, often long-lasting, are created when individuals attend religious, cultural and family functions together. These bonds have a role in dealing with trauma within the community. A major factor that shapes the community identity is the landscape on which they live in. It plays a very active role in their culture, as it provides a space in which activities mentioned above take place. The environment dictates what the community can do, thus shaping their survival mechanisms. Both the good and the evils associated with their landscape brings the community together as they genuinely look after each other, creating a sense of identity and belonging.

D: Designing (Alisa): Placemaking should be more about continual interactive participation processes (constant refining and adjusting the design) base on the values and needs of the community, other than just focusing on planning phase. The results inspire a stronger sense of ownership, which makes it more powerful than the seemingly best planned solution. Participatory democratic design involves listening to people's needs for setting clear goals, running workshops (experiential activities) to educate people about participation in design and defining the level of participation, following by prioritization of goals to come up with alternative plans for the final design. It's important to note that the making process never ends; it involves the actual evolution of utility by people and its maintenance, where the place becomes an adaptable/resilient form.


E: Communicating a Vision / Games in urban planning examples / Apps, webpages, toolkits (Stefan):

"Planning" could start again with "Playing"! And use more creative games and uncommon toolkits, that would change a lot!

We could use here games (e.g. board games and computer games) as tools, also as low-threshold tools and door opener. And create with these games playful ways to a spirited society: "To promote creativity, participation and processes of communication, competencies and development; to inspirate and support the exchange of different interests and points of view, thematical approaches and the development of new ideas and ways of society works on an individual and a common level;" And last but not least: for empowerment and promotion of communication and networking.

The idea and background of thes board games or use of virtual games like "Minecraft" are: As experiences from projects all over the world show that (Minecraft-)games are great tools for involving people, here also particularly youth, women and slum dwellers in urban design. Through participatory design workshops, these projects bring people together to visualise their ideas, and present these to city authorities, local government officials or their communities. The self-crafted designs are then used as part of the process, e.g. of implementing real public space improvement projects.

Step 6: Revised manifestoes

  • please look again at your initial manifestoes and update them with any new aspects/prespectives you have taken up during this seminar

Assignment 2 - Your Landscape Symbols

  • You can read more details about this assignment here

Landscape Symbols Author 1: HO SIN YEE

Landscape Symbols Author 2: Sudara Jayalath

Landscape Symbols Author 3: Stefan Köder (from Magdeburg / Germany)

Landscape Symbols Auther 4: ...

Landscape Symbols Auther 5: Fiona Nyadero

Assignment 3 - Role Play on Landscape Democracy "movers and shakers"

  • You can read more details about this assignment here

Assignment 4 - Your Landscape Democracy Challenge

  • You can read more details about this assignment here
  • Each group member will specify a landscape democracy challenge in his/her environment
  • Each Landscape Democracy Challenge should be linked to two or three of UN's 17 sustainable development Goals


Landscape Democracy Challenge: HO SIN YEE

Your references: https://www.facebook.com/LungMeiAlliance/?hc_ref=ARSxRjGFiOHMKAuhSWwwsxAhVH428dc3B7y92KCq7OqsE9HWVt8NcDvrIci3cVjT2SE&fref=nf http://www.hkwildlife.net/lungmei/ https://www.epd.gov.hk/eia/register/profile/latest/esb138.pdf

Landscape Democracy Challenge: Sudara Jayalath

Your references:

Landscape Democracy Challenge 3: Stefan Köder (Magdeburg / Germany): Gallery caption"Give chance of more indentity and empowerment to the (young) people in the district (in the "ghetto"...)"

Your references:

Landscape Democracy Challenge 4

Your references:

  • ...
  • ...

Landscape Democracy Challenge: Fiona Nyadero

Your references:

  • Juja subcounty officials
  • Resident interviewees

Assignment 5 - Your Democratic Change Process

  • You can read more details about this assignment here
  • After documenting and reflecting on your challenges you will continue jointly with one of these challenges and design a democratic change process

Your Democratic Change Process

Reflection

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Conclusion:

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Your references

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