Lost in space: Young people, bus networks and rights to the city

RA Lincoln, Adrienne Gregory

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The many discourses on the use of public space by youth (eg cultural or justice studies) are underpinned by a range of theoretical approaches (Lefebvre’s “right to the city”, Habermas on the “public sphere”, Foucauldian notions of “resistance” or a Durkheimian perspective on “anomie”). Given social and technological change this paper explores the complexities and transformations of urban youth rights in the 21st century. One of its contributions is to demonstrate how the transport environment reflects a different kind of “public space” (mobile, closed, ungoverned, utilitarian, privatised) that has rarely received scholarly attention, unlike the shopping mall, the square or the street. Its second contribution is to critique the body of literature on the “geographies of hanging out”. While not eschewing that there remains a punitive law-and-order approach, much of the literature adopts a “problematised” frame and fails to address the agency that young people can muster to create new spaces and engage in meaning-making; or that the streets are sites of empowerment or celebration of diversity such as the Sydney Mardi Gras or the Occupy Movements; or how the web creates new forms of public space for youth with fast communication and democratising features that permit engagement with the public domain. A final thread is the contestation within public transport space from the myriad of other “excluded” user-groups whose experience of the “right to the city” is as conflicted as that of young people (e.g. homeless, elderly, mentally ill).
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventThe fifth EUGEO Congress on the Geography of Europe - Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary
Duration: 30 Aug 20152 Sept 2015
Conference number: 5th


ConferenceThe fifth EUGEO Congress on the Geography of Europe
Abbreviated titleEUGEO
OtherThe programme will include keynote lectures, oral sessions, poster sessions, thematic panels, scientific and social events. Researchers and experts from all over the world are invited to submit paper and poster abstracts after registration. The aim is to facilitate the exchange of new ideas and to offer opportunities for networking within an informal atmosphere. The Congress venues are centrally located and well connected by public transport. PhD students and early career researchers are ecnouraged to actively participate and will be offered a reduced fee.

Main topics
Changes in Space and Time
One of the fundamental tasks of geographers is to document and analyse the complex implications of environmental, territorial, societal, and global changes. Geo­graphers working in a number of specialised sub-fields are able to provide key insights into spatial and temporal processes that have become increasingly global in their scope. Papers presented under the umbrella of this topic will provide a unique opportunity for scholars from diverse background to share their research and gain new perspectives on a definitely relevant topic.

Geography, Politics and Policy-making
Since the early 19th century the interplay between geo­graphy and politics, and the contribution of geography to policy-making has been intense. However, this linkage is overshadowed by growing environmental challenges, shifting power relations, mismatches of governance and decreasing levels of political representation in contemporary world. While the relevance of geography in policy-making as well as for understanding the contemporary world has been questioned, there are many possibilities how ‘we geographers’ can contribute to a better world.

The common language of our community’s research spectrum is map-based representation, which in the last decades has developed to geoinformatical analysis, spatial data infrastructures and interactive webmap applications. This theme focuses on the
new methods and progressive results of geodata acquisition, storage, interpretation, and visualisation techniques in 2D or 3D software environments.

Hazards, Vulnerability, Risk Mitigation
In recent years, significant advances have been made in the areas of hazards, vulnerability and risk mitigation. Participants will discuss the impact of natural and human hazards on the Euro-Mediterranean region, consider questions about reducing the vulnerability to hazards, economic effects and human risks. Organisers intend to provide a forum for experts to share their opinion about risk mitigation strategies as well.

Landscape and Environment
This wide field embraces a number of classical physical geographical, geomorphological, hidrological, pedological and biogeographical topics. Moreover, we would like to invite presentations on issues of climate change as well, and the consequences of human impact on the topics mentioned above. General environmental studies and ones dealing with land use changes are also welcome, especially those focusing on landscape protection, planning and rehabilitation.
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