Jane Jacobs 100: her legacy and relevance in the 21st Century/ A celebration of the life and legacy of Jane Jacobs and a look forward: https://janejacobs100.wordpress.com

In May 2016, we want to celebrate the 100th birthday of one of the most important urban thinkers of our time, someone who has influenced generations of designers and planners and others concerned with the built environment: the great Jane Jacobs.

Jane Jacobs’ theories and ideas are central to many different academic fields: urban design, planning, architecture, sociology, human geography, environmental psychology, economic geography and many more. This alone tells us of her importance for urban studies and for understanding the complex relationship between urban space and society. Her writings have been influential for more than five decades. In the 21st Century, Jacobs has been criticized and some of her ideas have been reviewed, although she was one of the first to put this relationship under scrutiny. It is undeniable that she remains one of the most important urban thinkers today.

The chair of Spatial Planning and Strategy of the Delft University of Technology, together with OTB – Research for the Built Environment and the Rotterdam Erasmus University College are organizing a two-day conference on Jane Jacob’s legacy at TU Deft.

This 2-day colloquium, will take place on 24-25 May 2016. It will be based in Delft with a field trip and urban walks in Rotterdam.

The conference aims to discuss Jane’s legacy and to take her ideas forward in the context of contemporary urbanization trends. The intensity and scale of current urbanization is unprecedented and new challenges have emerged since Jacobs published her main texts. How are the ideas of Jane Jacobs still relevant to understand the interplay between urban space and society? Or do we need new theories? To what extent have Jacobs’ ideas inspired today’s urban leaders and thinkers? How are they tackling urban issues such as growing inequality, spatial fragmentation, street life, safety in the public space and environmental decline?

We wish to discuss Jacobs’ ideas critically and to take stock of how those ideas have been used, misused and hopefully updated.

For more information, please write to Roberto Rocco at r.c.rocco@tudelft.nl mentioning the title “Jane Jacobs 100” in the subject field. We hope to see you there!

Call for tracks

In order to discuss Jane’s ideas and how to take them forward, we are looking for people interested in organizing parallel tracks during the symposium.

Each track will have one or two sessions of 1h30 available for the presentation of papers and discussion. This allows for the presentation of 4 to 5 papers per session and some time for discussion.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  1. Critical appraisal of Jane Jacobs ideas in different fields
  2. Influence and legacy of Jane Jacobs in different fields
  3. Update and critique of Jacobs’ ideas for 21st century urbanization
  4. New ways to take Jacobs’ ideas forward
  5. Placing Jacobs’ theories and ideas within an Historical perspective
  6. Jane Jacobs’ ideas in new geographic contexts (China, India, Brazil, Turkey, etc)
  7. Jane Jacobs and the right to the city
  8. Jane Jacobs and urban design
  9. Jane Jacobs and planning
  10. Jane Jacobs and sustainability
  11. Jane Jacobs and gentrification

If you are interested in organizing a track, please send a 300-word description of the track, including a title and research question and an estimation of the number of papers you expect to attract.

The scientific committee for this colloquium consists of Roberto Rocco (TU Delft), André Ouwehand (TU Delft) and Brian Doucet (Erasmus University College). We will evaluate the track proposals and make a selection.

The deadline for submission of track proposals is JANUARY 30, 2016. Please, send a DOC file to r.c.rocco@tudelft.nl mentioning “Jane Jacobs 100 tracks” in the subject field.

More information at the website Jane Jacobs 100.