Workshop: Contested Habitat III

Towards a new alternative Urban Agenda: a Radical Deconstruction of the Habitat III Process

The ONU Habitat conference are organised every 20 years in different parts of the world, putting forward the urban policies to boost capital accumulation and dispossession. Considering the fact that the Quito 2016 Habitat III new urban agenda is a fragmented monolithic apparatus gazing at cities and citizens through specific terms, this workshop aims at deconstruction the neoliberal rational backed by the United Nations, thus at developing alternative discourses. It will indicate and problematise properly the thematic fragmentation of the urban agenda, disputing the absences and key topics that have not been incorporated into the new urban agenda. Hereby, we refer especially to the injustices created by global capitalism and the further embodiment of financial governance.

By deconstructing and analysing the current neoliberal strategies and the expansion of capital, we want to strengthen the bottom-up voices who suggest an alternative and more just living in the city. Therefore we will focus on themes, essential for the future of urban lives in cities across the globe: housing policies and rent gaps, action policies and housing, mobility and transport, social control and public space.

The workshop brings together activists and radical academics that struggle against the further commodification of urban life in the 21st century. The initial step of this encounter is the creation of a policy toolkit. This will be achieved through a reflexive deconstruction of the hidden meanings and misleading usage of critical urban terminology in the Habitat III policy documents, as well as a dispute for visualising the absences and gaps of the process. Analysis will be undertaken by members of the international CONTESTED_CITIES network.