10 - 11 january 2019
CIUL - Centro de Informação de Lisboa
Organized by DINÂMIA'CET-IUL
With the support
Centre for Urban and Community Research
Walking has recently regained importance and visibility as a major element in the construction and experience of urban territories, with urban walking seen as playing a crucial role in helping us understand physical, social and cultural spaces. Walking is central to city life; in fact, despite all the different modes of transport, it is still the most common form of movement across the globe - whether for pleasure, work or survival, for migration, for running errands, or simply to be seen. In all its forms, walking is central to our knowledge of the world and it is only when we learn to walk that a deeper relationship with our surroundings begins.
Walking as a research methodology that tries to make sense of (urban) environments and of the every-day practices of (city) dwellers has also gained currency. Walking enables us to contemplate our bodies in movement and can evoke emotional responses, memories and philosophical considerations. It can lead to questions of existence or reflections on life beyond the every-day in search for ‘truth’. Walking is also a way of observing and being with others, allowing us to better understand the embodied experience of social life. It can take us to new places, stimulating attentiveness that enables us to ask questions and offer new perspectives on places. Walking encourages us to engage with our surroundings with all our senses, evoking new and different ways of knowing.
This symposium explores walking as a research practice, discussing some of the conceptual and practical aspects of walking through a diverse selection of themes and projects that apply walking either as an analytical and methodological tool, an art technique or a performance, or simply as a philosophical study that explores its impact on human life. It aims to demonstrate the importance of walking, not only as the most democratic and simplest form of moving through spaces, but also as a way of positioning oneself in the world and one’s surroundings, in urban or ‘rural’ territories.
Thursday 10 January
Friday 11 January
Dr. Paula André
Paula André, born in Lisbon, has a PhD in Architecture and Urbanism from ISCTE-IUL – University Institute of Lisbon and a Master’s degree in Art History from F.C.S.H. of Universidade Nova de Lisboa. She is Assistant Professor of the Department of Architecture and Urbanism at ISCTE-IUL, teaches on the Master programmes of Architecture, Modern and Contemporary History (specialization: Cities and Heritage) and Management and Culture Studies. She is an integrated researcher at DINÂMIA'CET-IUL- Centre for Socioeconomic Change and Territorial Studies. She has developed research in the areas of Theory and History of Architecture and Urbanism and Art History, with publications in Brazil, Argentina, Spain and Portugal.
Dr. Alex Rhys-Taylor
Alex Rhys-Taylor is a senior lecturer and researcher at the Centre for Urban and Community Research at Goldsmiths. His research looks at the relationship between the sensory experience of cities and histories of change. His most recent book, Food and Multiculture, is now out in paperback from Bloomsbury. He also contributed to and/or edited 'Walking Through Social Research' 'A Tale of Two Londons' and 'A Cultural History of the Senses' all of which have recently been published. He is currently working on a new project looking at urban etiquette in the 21st century. Alex is involved in a number of campaigns around housing and young people in East London and has appeared regularly on BBC Radio 4s Thinking Allowed.
Stick to the Beat: Walking, Cities and the Speed of Thought
In this talk we will consider the relationship between walking, the rhythms of urban life, and social research. For all of the technological advances of recent decades, from the jet plane to fibre optics communications, this paper will argue that, in most cities, a significant slice of everyday life still unfolds at the speed of walking. Through walking cities, acquaintances are made, neighbourhoods are soaked up, and sidewalks are negotiated. Moreover, walking is more than simply the speed at which material life unfolds. The talk will also argue that the speed and rhythm of discursive consciousness is also closely related to pedestrian rhythms. As such, the paper foregrounds the importance of walking to a humanist urbanism that remains attentive to the vestiges of the social that are made on foot.
Carla Duarte is an architect who was born and lives, works and walks in Lisbon, every day strolling along the streets for the pleasure of knowing the city and its communities. Carla obtained a degree in Architecture and Urban and Territorial Planning at the Faculty of Architecture, University of Lisbon. She works at Lisbon City Council on urban analysis and data management projects. Since 2000, she has been working with architectural firms in the designing of urban and architectural plans. In 2013, she did a Leonardo Da Vinci EU Programme internship with a Goldsmiths College researcher (University of London), producing photographic analytical work. She is currently a PhD candidate at ISCTE-IUL, focusing her research on the importance of walking in the city.
Walking in Valverde
Walking Places, walking in places. Walking requires a place where it can occur, where one can put one foot in front of the other and move the body forward, through space, in a particular landscape. Walking cannot happen without place, where motion engages the senses: feet feel the soil while touching the ground, eyes see the space that surrounds the body, ears hear the soundscapes, the nose smells the odours released into the atmosphere – taken together these sensory experiences can be referred to as landscape (or sense-scape). But walking can also generate physical landscapes, or walkscapes, when it is the main agent - the genesis of a landscape, with the human step making way through space, printing a trail that will become a road, firstly in soil, formed by footsteps, then cobbled and asphalted. In Lisbon, the old Valverde Way (a road that connected Rossio in the city center to São Sebastião da Pedreira up north, through Portas de Santo Antão, São José, Santa Marta e São Sebastião da Pedreira) is one such example. Located at the foot of Santana’s Hill, and running parallel to Valverde’s stream, it was once the most natural and comfortable place to walk up to the northern territories. Throughout the years, the road was shaped as buildings were constructed along it, defining the current irregular and dense urban image. This talk will describe how the landscape of this road has developed from a walking perspective and in light of contemporary landscape conventions. It also aims to emphasise the role that modes of travel play in shaping one’s understanding of a place. A landscape that was built to walk can hardly be understood in the same way when travelled at a faster velocity.
Dr Sérgio Barreiros Proença
Sergio dos Santos Barreiros Proenca (Lisbon, Portugal, 1977) graduated in 2001 in Architecture and Urban and Territorial Planning at the Faculty of Architecture - Technical University of Lisbon, MSc in Modern and Contemporary Architectural Culture in 2007 and PhD in Urbanism in 2014 with the thesis "The Diversity of the Street in the city of Lisbon. Morphology and Morphogenesis", funded by a PhD grant from the Foundation for Science and Technology (SFRH/BD/44847/2008) and winner of the 2014 José Lamas award for the best PhD in Urbanism of the Faculty of Architecture - University of Lisbon.
Assistant Professor of the Department of project in the scientific area of Urbanism of the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Lisbon, where he teaches Design Studio classes and is a founding member of Forma Urbis Lab (formaurbislab.fa.utl.pt), a research laboratory on the theme of Urban Morphology. Coordinates the ongoing research project on “The Portuguese Atlantic Seashore Streets. Interpretative reading and Design in Climate Change context”.
He has been invited to give lectures in other national and international institutions and participates in seminars and regularly publishes articles on the topic of urban morphology and morphogenesis. His academic activity and the works in which he participated were recognized by different awards among which are: Prémio José de Figueiredo 2008, awarded by the National Academy of Fine Arts; the International Prize Inácio de Lecea 2007/2008, awarded by the Public Art and Urban Design Observatory of the University of Barcelona; and the Prémio Jovens Investigadores (Young Researchers) UTL/CGD in the area of Architecture awarded by the Technical University of Lisbon in 2008.
Shaping starts with walking
The presentation focuses on the primordial role of walking in architectural and urban design addressing the second semester of the first year design studio taught at the Faculdade de Arquitectura (Lisbon School of Architecture) of the University of Lisbon in 2017-2018. The pedagogical approach to the exercise was based on walking as the first act of project and art, mainly proto-architectural sculpture, as the catalyst of Architectural composition.
Walking is always the first human appropriation of a place. In this case, walking a path from the Cais das Colunas, by the river, to the Pátio de D. Fradique, adjacent to the castle walls, consisted of the first acknowledgement of the site, registered in 10 photographs, creating a composed image from fragments. A model representing the walked public space supported by the ancient walls of Lisbon was made, revealing the relations between walls and path, vertical and horizontal, limits and continuity. This abstraction of reality allowed reducing the complexity of the site and created a base for its understanding and the development of the project.
Art was used as a catalyst for Architectural composition; mainly works of art that have a strong relation with spatial composition through excavation and geometrical abstraction.
The coded interpretation of the place crossed with the artistic references disclosed the possibilities for the project. The definition of a new path in continuity with the walked public space, connecting the different levels in presence, and the definition of a courtyard was the starting point for the occupation of the site: a line for walking; a patio for contemplating.
The detailed design of the spaces focused in composition and lighting and the manipulation of models allowed to test, compare and shape spaces through cuts, incisions and additions. The program distribution along the shaped path acknowledged the vocation of each part of the site, designing a continuum between place, promenade, shape and use.
Dr. Emma Jackson
Emma Jackson is an urban sociologist and ethnographer working as a Senior Lecturer in the Sociology Department at Goldsmiths, University of London. Emma’s research and writing explore the relationship between everyday practices of belonging and the production of spaces and places in cities. She is author of ‘Young Homeless People and Urban Space: Fixed in Mobility’ (2015), co-author of ‘Go Home? The Politics of Everyday Controversies’ (2017) and ‘The Middle Classes and the City: a study of Paris and London’, and co-editor of ‘Stories of Cosmopolitan Belonging: Emotion and Location’ (2015). She is currently writing up the project ‘The Choreography of Everyday Multiculture: Bowling Together?’ an ethnography of a London bowling alley funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.
Emma is an editor of The Sociological Review.
Flâneuse Fragments: Towards a multiple and situated approach to walking in the city
Early classical accounts of the urban experience in European and American cities are largely based on the points of view of men from the upper middle classes (Simmel, 1903; Engels, 1892; Tönnies, 1887). This echoes through traditions of writing about walking in the city that celebrate the figure of the flâneur, the wry detached observer of modernity who moves through the city easily and slowly, while ‘botanising on the asphalt’ (Benjamin (1983, p. 36). The influence of the figure of the flâneur can be traced through the Situationist movement and in more recent iterations of psychogeography (for example, the large body of work produced by Iain Sinclair and the musings of Will Self) that rely on a lone man finding his way through derelict urban landscapes, or in accounts of urban exploration. As Mott and Robert (2014) pithily point out in their feminist critique of urbanex, ‘not everyone has (the) balls’ for this kind of urban exploration.
In this talk I set out an alternative agenda for thinking and writing about walking in the city from a situated and feminist perspective. I take two points of departure. Firstly, I examine alternative feminist approaches drawing on examples including the film-maker Àgnes Varda, the sociologist Nirmal Puwar and the geographer Morag Rose. Secondly, I suggest that Benjamin’s Arcades Project with its fragmented form and non-linear style could serve as a model for presenting a set of alternative feminist writings on walking in the city that better recognizes the situated body of the walker.
Luísa Salvador (1988) holds a Sculpture BFA from Universidade de Lisboa (2009) and a MA in Contemporary Art History from Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas — Universidade Nova de Lisboa (2012). Currently, she is a PhD candidate in Contemporary Art History also at FCSH-UNL with the support of a FCT fellowship and a researcher at Instituto de História da Arte.
Her thesis focuses on the interaction between Art and Landscape from its relation with walking, reflecting the multiple traces that are generated from it.
Alongside this activity, Luísa develops her artistic practice, participating in several group exhibitions and developing projects in collaboration with other artists and architects.
Walking as an artistic practice
Since late 19th century, with the flânerie celebrated by Charles Baudelaire’s literature, much has changed regarding both the intellectual framework and environments that surround walking as an aesthetic practice.
If walking as an aesthetic practice first became a way to apprehend a new city life and an increased urban population, potentiated by the industrial revolution, by mid-20th century these observations had turned into actions.
And in the process walking also gained different dimensions and meanings.
As Tolentino Mendonça states “Nothing provides us more the measurement of real than the footstep and the hand”. The sense of scale provided by walking is one of the best measurements the human being has of his own surroundings. That particular sense of scale has contributed to turn the act of walking — even more than into an aesthetic practice — into an artistic practice. This presentation will depart from this premise.
The action of walking as an artistic practice is presented in a variety of forms, contents and works proportional to the diversity of human behaviour, which is to say – depending on the artist’s intention, walking takes on different statements. The works of Vito Acconci, Hamish Fulton, Richard Long and Francis Alys will be highlighted, but also examples of anonymous initiatives that were triggered and developed from earlier artworks. The presentation will conclude with a few remarks about the role of these artistic initiatives in the contemporary social context.
Anita Strasser is an urban photographer / visual sociologist, currently doing an AHRC-funded* PhD in Visual Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her main research interests are the everyday practices of urban communities, the regeneration and gentrification of cities, particularly London, and the representation of class, as well as visual research methods, community arts and participatory photographic practices. Being a keen walker and mountaineer, she is also interested in walking as a research methodology and researching the life and work of mountain folk. She is an active member of the Urban Photographers Association, the International Visual Sociology Association and the Centre of Urban and Community Research (CUCR) at Goldsmiths, as well as the Alpine Association Austria. Anita has exhibited her work widely in many (inter)national solo and group shows and co-organises the annual symposium Engaging in Urban Image-making at CUCR Goldsmiths (engaginginurbanimagemaking.wordpress.com).
*Arts and Humanities Research Council
For more information, please visit her website: www.anitastrasser.com
The Stone Sea: a walk through mountain research
This talk will take the audience on a trek across the Stone Sea - a mountain range in the Austrian and Bavarian Alps which Anita has been researching for the past 4 years. The research concentrates on the every-day lives of people living and working in this mountain range during the summer season, creating an intimate visual ethnography that reflects the social worlds of those involved. The research is an oral histories project that focuses on people’s narrative accounts of their understanding of life in the Alps, thus providing insight into some of the complex issues of mountain life in modern times such as tourism, modernisation and environmental sustainability. This research could only be carried out through walking in this difficult mountain terrain, and over the past four summers, Anita has spent weeks at a time tracing the footsteps and stories of sheep farmers, hunters, mountain rescue teams, inn-keepers and many others. Walking the same footpaths many times over in this weathered landscape of rock, in varying weather conditions, physical and mental states, and with people’s narrative accounts ringing in her head, has helped develop a better understanding of the political and social worlds of the people traversing this terrain on a regular basis. Through a phenomenological approach to this research that shifts the focus on movement, affect and memory, the talk intermingles the personal journey of Anita’s physical and emotional experiences of mountaineering with the narrative accounts provided by others. As such, the walk becomes a way of thinking through research, a route through memories that transport her back to the present.
Jennifer has been an active member of London Independent Photography for eleven years, showing work regularly at group exhibitions. For eight years she has been a member of the Crossing Lines forum at Goldsmiths College and as part of that group has participated in various collaborative photographic engagements with the urban landscape, for example The London Villages, Loose Traverse and Swanscombe Marshes Projects.
Jennifer previously worked as a psychotherapist, and loves to sing jazz, both of which activities resonate with her photographic approach.
In 2017 she attended the International Urban Photography Summer School at Goldsmiths College and was subsequently invited to present her work at the “Engaging in Urban Image Making” symposium at Goldsmiths in April 2018.
Tracking - Down by the railway
In 2017 I attended the International Urban Photography Summer School at Goldsmiths College, where my final course project focussed on the process of practising photography using a phenomenological methodology.
The phenomenological, sensory approach resonates with my previous training as an integrative psychotherapist, and in particular with my experience of using Gestalt therapy. I also relate it to ideas from the new geography regarding the immanence of the landscape.
I walk when I take photos, usually without any conscious plan in mind. I try to allow myself to be embodied and embedded in the landscape. Sometimes a theme emerges, sometimes not. Any significance in the images may not be immediate.
This walk was down by the railway in Deptford, south-east London, along a kind of edgelands where large scale infrastructure renewal has made it necessary to close off part of the area for several years. Now it is re-opened, but there are many high, chainlink fences. Nothing is visible directly through them. Everything is fuzzy. You can't touch what is behind, or easily take photographs through them. As I walked, a theme of invisibility, the hidden, erasure and exclusion began to emerge.
Dr David S. Vale
David S. Vale has a bachelor in Geography and Regional Planning (FCSH-UNL), an MSc in Geographic Information Systems (Técnico-ULisboa) and a Ph.D. in Architecture, Planning and Landscape (Newcastle University, UK). He is currently an Assistant Professor at the Lisbon School of Architecture, teaching courses such as Urban Geography, Road Systems and Transportation, and Geographic Information Systems. His research is focused on the integration of land use and transportation, and on the integration of different transport modes, with a special focus on Transit-oriented development and Active Mobility. He also analyses and develops walking, cycling and multimodal accessibility indicators, and evaluates the relationship between the built environment with active travel, physical activity, and health.
Walking as a transport mode: complementarity and competition
When analyzing travel, several modes are normally identified, constituting options for an individual to move between a certain origin and a destination. Walking, and to certain extent also cycling, is nevertheless different once all trips inevitably start and end by an initial walking segment, regardless of the mode(s) used in the total trip and the complexity of the trip chain. This specificity requires to conceive walking differently from other travel modes, as it assumes two main roles: a competition role, as walking by itself might be the chosen travel mode, and a complementary role, as walking is the first and foremost feeder mode for all other travel modes.
In this article, we are reflecting on these two roles of walking and in what way they translate in urban public spaces and urban planning. From an analysis of real cases, ranging from public transport station areas’ walkability and connectivity evaluation, to specific street segments of the city of Lisbon, we show that these roles are far from being properly understood and translated into the built environment. Indeed, not only several station areas’ walking catchment area are significantly smaller than they could be, as several streets present a layout that facilitates access by other modes (the car in particular), but clearly neglect the complementary role of walking to reach the final destination, as several impediments (either obstacles or even physical limitations) are easily found that inhibit walking. We end by arguing that is essential to conceive a trip as starting at a particular location (and not a stop, station or crossing) and finishing at another particular location, in order to assume walking as a complementary (and essential) travel mode, in order to alter the pedestrian and overall accessibility of a metropolitan area.
Mónica Diniz is a sociologist, Head of Prevention, Security and International Relations of the Lisbon Municipal Police/Lisbon Municipality, with a Masters in Sociology and Planning and with a professional background in the area of youth risk behaviours and drug use prevention programmes. Mónica has been working in the Lisbon Municipal Police since 2008, with the main responsibilities on the planning and implementation of Community Policing projects and the promotion of international cooperation projects on Urban Security. She has focused her work on police-citizens cooperation and community capacity building on security issues at a local level, namely promoting police-community safety partnerships and the active role of citizens as co-producers of community safety. She is a trainer on community policing model, targeting both police officers and civil society, participating also in projects on Crime Prevention through Urban Design and Planning, Intercultural Mediation Approach to Urban Safety and Smart Cities & Communities.
Community Policing in Lisbon: Walking for Safer Neighbourhoods
One of the main challenges in local policing relates to the need of building safer communities through effective and trustful relationships between police and citizens. Community policing in Lisbon, implemented by the Lisbon Municipal Police in close articulation with citizens and local partners, has been crucial to set in place concerted responses to tackle community concerns, engaging citizens and local partners to work with the police as co-producers of community safety.
Community policing is embedded in a preventive and problem solving approach, in which police officers, through daily on-foot patrols, walk the streets and listen to people’s problems. These problems may differ from fear of crime, antisocial behaviour or complaints related with public space interventions (e.g. towing abandoned vehicles, land clearing of shrubbery in areas of traffic and drug use nearby schools or the improving and replacement of lighting in public space). Being more open to citizen’s participation, this model of policing is also rooted in the principle that both police and community should work together to identify local insecurity problems and to jointly reflect and understand why they occur and persist, prompting network responses and community resources on their mitigation and ways of prevention.
The on-foot patrols contribute therefore not only to a closer police-citizens relationship, enhancing their feelings of safety, but also to a better understanding and knowledge by police of a neighbourhood’s vulnerabilities and potentialities, enabling the improvement of the design and implementation of more effective and sustainable crime prevention responses. The results of several studies on community policing revealed also that citizens respond more favourably to frequent and informal contacts with police officers. In this sense, the on-foot patrols carried out by the community policing teams, contribute to the reduction of the feeling of fear over crime and for citizens to feel their neighbourhoods as safer and better places to live in.
Carla Duarte is an architect who was born and lives, works and walks in Lisbon, every day strolling along the streets for the pleasure of knowing the city and its communities. Carla obtained a degree inUrban Planning from the Faculty of Architecture, University of Lisbon. She works at Lisbon City Council on urban analysis and data management projects. Since 2000, she has been working with architectural firms in the designing of urban and architectural plans. In 2013, she did a Leonardo Da Vinci EU Programme internship with a Goldsmiths College researcher (University of London), producing photographic analytical work. She is currently a PhD candidate at ISCTE-IUL, focusing her research on the importance of walking in the city.
Anita Strasser is an urban photographer / visual sociologist, currently doing an AHRC-funded* PhD in Visual Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her main research interests are the everyday practices of urban communities, the regeneration and gentrification of cities, particularly London, and the representation of class, as well as visual research methods, community arts and participatory photographic practices. Being a keen walker and mountaineer, she is also interested in walking as a research methodology and researching the life and work of mountain folk. She is an active member of the Urban Photographers Association, the International Visual Sociology Association, and the Centre of Urban and Community Research (CUCR) at Goldsmiths, as well as the Alpine Association Austria. Anita has exhibited her work widely in many (inter)national solo and group shows and co-organises the annual symposium Engaging in Urban Image-making at CUCR Goldsmiths (engaginginurbanimagemaking.wordpress.com). For more information, please visit her website:
*Art and Humanities Research Council.
DINÂMIA’CET – IUL Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies is an ISCTE-IUL research unit which combines fundamental and applied research on economic, social and cultural topics. It carries out advanced international research systematically grounded on interdisciplinarity. With the aim of framing a new approach to sustainable development, our research seeks to contribute to the understanding of the contemporary world through the analysis of the contexts, the actors and the consequences of change, with a focus on institutional frameworks, and through extensive recourse to comparative approaches. Devoting special attention to the dynamics and changes of the Portuguese society, the researchers of DINÂMIA’CET-IUL are engaged in contributing to the design of the future, and, when considered appropriate (e.g. to promote environmental sustainability, social cohesion and democracy), do not hesitate to expressly endorse a normative approach.
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CUCR Centre for Urban and Community Research was established in 1994 as an interdisciplinary research centre within the Department of Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London. With its core expertise ranging from visual sociology to digital geo-demography, the CUCR remains central to debates about community, ecology, governance, multiculture, citizenship, arts and media in contemporary cities.
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