15/06/16 UD Exchange: Framing Places


The current urban situation poses a number of challenges for Urban Design both as discipline and practice. Growing cities, a general housing shortage and the recent influx of refugees demand substantial analyses rather than quick fixes. Especially the current ‘refugee crisis’ presents a dilemma for Urban Design, which is symptomatic for the context in which it operates. While think tanks and labs experiment with modern participation tools and architects design temporary accommodation floor plans, the framing of the actual issue is rarely questioned. This is where Urban Design can open up perspectives that go beyond problem solving tasks. Certain aspects of the urban either favour or impede encounters with diversity (Esposito De Vita et al. 2016), which allows to shift the question away from the ‘problem’ of diversity towards urban potentialities that are currently locked into its framing as problem. Where the ‘refugee crisis’ is mainly framed as one of finding places for their accommodation, Urban Design at HCU addresses practices of »framing« in diverse situations and on various scales. Easterling (2014, 21) argues that »detecting and developing the active forms that shape disposition is an essential skill« of urbanists. What unfolds when opening the black boxes of urban development processes are dispositions that display highly complex assemblages and an aesthetic and political repertoire. How can we re-assemble urban design in relation to urban development areas and arenas? What can changing patterns of everyday life teach us about urban(ised) society in general and the changing role of the designing disciplines?

The exchange between students and members of staff of the research and teaching programmes Urban Design from METU Ankara and HCU Hamburg seeks to discuss the current situation in the two metropolises with a view to address these questions and develop a possible common research agenda.


15/06/2016 4 – 6 pm
Room 3.103


Prof. Dr. Ingrid Breckner


Professor, Urban and Regional Sociology

Prof. Dipl. Ing. Bernd Kniess


Professor, Urban Design

Prof. Dr. Kathrin Wildner


Professor, Culture Theory and Cultural Practice

M.Sc. Dominique Peck


Academic Staff, Ph.D. Candidate