CfP | The Normalcy of Urban Neoliberalism and its Limits
Session at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG) in New York (February 24-28, 2012)
Organizers: Susanne Heeg, Robert Pütz, Felix Silomon-Pflug and Anne Vogelpohl (Goethe University Frankfurt (Main), Germany)
[Sponsored by the Urban Geography Specialty Group]
The neoliberal “re-ordering of cities” has to be understood within the stress ratio of global conditions and specific local requirements. As a result urban neoliberalism is shaped by local adaption, transformation and implementation of globally available urban policies. Solving local crises and preparing cities for interurban global competition can be seen as purposes of this “travelling of policies”. The mobility of urban politics has led to the normalization of neoliberal urban development as well as the corresponding analytic perspective on cities. As this process of normalization yet remains a contested process that is resisted, obstructed or avoided in many ways it can be understood as a constant stretching of limits – e.g. through policies that strengthen the ability to co-opt critique or de-politicize social movements. But limits to urban neoliberalism’s normalcy may also hint at a post-neoliberal change.
We invite paper proposals that either analyze the process of enforcing the urban neoliberal character or that analyze limitations to neoliberalization and potentially post-neoliberal urban development. The former include re-orderings of administrations or policy guidelines; the latter include re-interpretations of failed policies and deepened inequalities (shrinkage, marginalization etc.) or concepts and perspectives for alternative cities (“just city”, “right to the city”, peoples/participatory budgets etc.).
- Within this field the papers may address, but are not limited to the following questions:
- How are mobile urban policies adapted, transformed and implemented and what are the effects for the re-ordering of urban configurations/assemblages?
- Which role does the travelling of urban policies play for the normalization of neoliberal urban development?
- How are contradictions between market– and competition-oriented restructurings on the one hand and a socially just/ livable city discourse on the other reconciled?
- Is the neoliberal city depoliticized and, if so, what are the consequences for modes of participation/ (self)representation?
- Is the neoliberal character of the urban reinvented or overcome in the course of the ongoing economic crisis? What are the limits of neoliberal adaptability?
- Which theories and concepts can be used to conceive a post-neoliberal change?
Please submit a ~250-word abstract by September 16, 2011 to Anne Vogelpohl (firstname.lastname@example.org).