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Metropolis Nonformal – Anticipation
Launching the UN-Habitat Hub on Informal Urbanism
Location: Sophiensaal, Sophienstr. 6, Munich

Wednesday, November 20
18:00 Christian Werthmann, Sophie Wolfrum, Regine Keller, Claudio Acioly: Welcome


18:30 Rahul Mehrotra: Kinetic City – Opening Lecture
The Lecture will look at the idea of the Kinetic city through a study of economy, housing, public space and popular culture more generally. Furthermore the lecture will study the implications of this argument of an urbanism that is elastic and temporal with regard to the many hundred new towns and cities that are going to rather suddenly appear on the Urban Landscape in the Global South. The lecture will make a case for constructing narratives  to discuss Urbanism beyond the binary of the formal and informal to encompass a more robust description of the emerging urban landscape.


Thursday, November 21
09:00 Christian Werthmann: Metropolis Nonformal – Anticipation


09:20 Cynthia Smith: Design Exchange
Placing people at the center of the solution is paramount in gaining the required insight to meet the challenge of our rapidly expanding informal cities. The exchange of design knowledge is no longer unidirectional from a design professional to informal city resident, but reciprocal. No longer top down, but horizontal. Conducting field research in 2010 Smith traveled to 16 cities in Asia, Africa and Latin America meeting with people living and working in informal settlements in preparation for the second exhibition in the “Design with the Other 90%” series. Smith will provide an overview of emerging themes and strategies discovered during this recent inquiry.


09:40  Jörg Rekittke: Permanent Residence on Board a Sinking Ship
Jakarta resembles a sinking ship with more than ten million people aboard. The city will not cease to exist while some parts of Jakarta sag 25 centimetres per year. Up to sixty percent of Jakarta is regularly submerged by flooding, most affected are the informal settlements. All harm doesn't lead to the migration of the initially informal settlers, who continue to build a robust form of reality that designers should thoroughly analyse, understand and improve. It would be a cardinal error to regard informality as something temporary, we have to anticipate its consolidation into an irreversible part of future city.


10:00  Discussion with Andres Lepik

10:30  Break

11:00  Janice Perlman: Urban Informality – Marginal or Mainstream?
Given that a billion people are currently living off the grid in the world’s cities and that this number is expected to grow to three billion people (a third of the world’s population) by 2050, urban informality is one of the most pressing issues of our time. Dr. Perlman will report on her 40 years of research in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, following the lives of hundreds of families over 4 generations and tracing the evolution of policy and practice. What has gotten better? What has gotten worse? What are the issue areas for future research? And, what knowledge, innovation and action will be critical in creating inclusive sustainable cities in the future?


11:20  Rainer Hehl: Mass Housing versus Popular Architecture
The proliferation of large-scale mass housing in Brazil is still considered a viable solution for reducing the housing deficit for low-income populations. However, the federal programme “Minha Casa, Minha Vida” seems to repeat the same mistakes that were leading to the formation of urban ghettos.
An investigation of the area Cidade de Deus, a settlement for the relocation of favela dwellers built in the 1960s by governmental agencies, shows that the combination of formal and informal structures can lead to lively, popular neighborhoods.
Learning from the incremental logic of the favelas and popular Brazilian architecture (APB) alternative models for low-cost housing can be developed. Instead of just giving access to housing the emphasis is here on access to the city as an integral social and spatial organization.


11:40  Discussion moderated by Andres Lepik

12:15  Break

Adapting to Growth
14:00  Maria Teresa Diniz: Design Guidelines – Because Slums Deserve the Best
In a world that still discusses whether we should upgrade slums, the story to be told here is about the work developed by the Design Team at the Housing Department (Sehab) of São Paulo between 2008 and 2012. Based on theoretical and field experience, this group of believers have created design guidelines and assessment tools for urban design and social housing, convicted that the pressing challenges are better faced by cities when they acknowledge the investments already made by the dwellers, who have been consolidating these precarious settlements for over four decades in Brazil. Could other cities profit from this new urbanism baseline, adapting and developing their own tools?


14:20  Hubert Klumpner: Constructing Cities – Development of Process Based Architecture in the Global South
The concept of the favela as a slum is obsolete. U-TT has worked for over ten years towards a radical reinvention of increasingly ubiquitous informal settlements, driven by the construction of an alternative conceptual framework. The process of connecting, planning, and financing our cities raises the issues of urgency and long-term commitment as drivers of urban development. U-TT has assisted communities in defining goals, setting priorities and assuming leadership beyond a process of trial and error and instead towards a process characterized by measurable results with the power to transform the ‘worst’ areas in cities into laboratories for social transformation, entrepreneurship and self-determination by architecture.


14:40  Marcos L. Rosa: Handmade Urbanism
Handmade Urbanism focuses in expertise compiled from the study of community initiatives worldwide that aim to improve their urban spaces by making use of local resources and its potential. The focus on community initiatives in São Paulo situates the action of the micro scale in terms of its social practices and collective appropriations, calling attention to the importance of ‘bottom up’ initiatives in the configuration of the urban landscape. Further, it shows the need to understand and propose mechanisms (urban operations) coherent to the identified fields and their potentials, pointing out how these findings can feed back into the urban practice.


15:00  Discussion moderated by Claudio Acioly


15:30  Break

16:00  Adriana Larangeira: Informal Settlements in Latin America


16:20  Solange Carvalho: Managing Growth in Rio’s Favelas
Although Rio de Janeiro’s experience has made the city an international reference in slum upgrading (urbanization of favelas), it still hasn’t been able to implement actions to contain the expansion and settle the population in these areas.We will defend the position that urban design, when properly applied, can be a powerful tool in restricting the settlement area, controlling the occupation of risk areas and preventing expansion by redefining the boundaries of the favelas. 
But without involving the residents and raising their awareness of the importance of the need for managing the growth of these areas, any of these attempts will fail. However, urban intervention will have little influence on the gentrification that is occurring in the city’s favelas. These points will be presented based on case studies from the Babilônia and Chapéu Mangueira favelas. These two neighboring communities where the same urban boundaries have been implemented have had quite distinct expansion patterns. Currently, these communities are undergoing a significant real estate appreciation as a result of the urban improvements and major sports events that will take place in Rio de Janeiro until 2016.


16:40  Discussion moderated by Claudio Acioly


UN-Habitat UNI & A New Hub for Informal Urbanism
17:00  Claudio Acioly, Christian Werthmann


18:00 Kerstin Sommer: Participatory Slum Upgrading

Friday, November 22
9:00    Claudio Acioly: Critical Issues about Informal Urbanization and the Future of Cities


Land and Community
9:20    Michael Hooper: Public Participation – Simple Conceits Versus Complex Realities
This presentation argues that there are strong instrumental reasons, particularly in urban areas characterized by physical informality, to engage in participatory planning. In areas where unknown variables wildly exceed those that are known, public participation allows planners and community leaders to better understand both where to act and how interventions will impact vulnerable groups. However, if planners and other actors in the development process treat participation as a routinized activity and fail to engage with the underlying, context-specific political forces that participation is so well suited to address, participation may have little impact or even adverse consequences. In developing its arguments, the presentation draws on experiences from mobilization efforts in informal communities in East Africa to observe how the practice of public participation might be enhanced.  It also highlights that participation’s strengths lie in its complexity, not in its potential for deployment as a routine practice.


9:40    Anna Heringer: Handmade Architecture – a Catalyst for Development
In the challenge to create shelter for all I believe that our main tasks are to search for potentials in the existing, to raise the trust of communities in their own skills and resources, to train people in the usage of naturally and locally available construction materials, to show the value of traditional skills, to build up the self-confidence of individuals and groups and a benevolent atmosphere through participation, to create work opportunities and to foster cultural diversity.
Through this I believe we do not only achieve shelter, but also more equality and a more peaceful as well as creative society.


10:00  Discussion moderated by Regine Keller


10:30  Break

11:00  Martim Smolka: From the Tree (Curative) to the Forest (Preventive) – Revisiting Policies Towards Informality
Three propositions, structures the presentation: a) that the functioning of urban land market plays a critical role, over and above poverty (neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition)  to account for informality; b) that titling, up-grading and special zoning programs all have downsides implying ultimately that current regularization/curative policies, become as much part of the solution than of the problem; c) that to meet the challenge of improving affordability to serviced land by low income families, alternative/preventive policies may be grounded on often overlooked tools such as the capitalization (mitigating) effect of transport costs and of property taxes on land prices; on alternative land-based (value capture ) tools to finance urban infrastructure and services; and, on revisiting land use regulation anti-poor biases.


11:20  Reinhard Goethert: Sites and Services of the 21st Century


11:40  Discussion moderated by Regine Keller


12:00 Break

Infrastructure and Landscape
14:00  Sahar Attia: Towards Resilient Communities through Coordinated Strategies and Interventions
Since decades Egyptian institutions and organizations, have been working on the upgrading of informal areas, the issue was always about finding quick declared solutions, without focusing on how   they contribute effectively in preventing further unplanned developments. In 2006, the government took an initiative aiming at planning the future extensions that would take place anyway, thus anticipating the future demand. Relevant issues are to be investigated, such as governance, participation, and anticipating the impact of such strategy on the size of existing agglomerations. Focusing on the 5th theme of WUF: Resilience cities, the presentation attempts to theorize the urban system and its capacity for adaptation of cities to the planned extensions vis a vis planning the future of cities.

14:20  Undine Giseke: Fragmented Cities – Linking the Urban and the Rural
Casablanca (Morocco) is taken as a case study for polycentric regional urbanization investigating the evolution of urban-rural linkages within the city region (‘problem-framing’). Within the  transdisciplinary research process a spatial model and urban development reanalysis revealed how informal processes influence the formation of large-scale spatial structures. Based on these analyses (‘systems knowledge’), regional development scenarios were created and were translated into concepts and strategies for subspaces: the nine urban-rural morphologies (‘target knowledge’). A regional action plan developed concrete steps towards initiating transformation processes. Implementation projects in an informal settlement highlight the parallel interlinkages on both macro and micro levels needed to stimulate change in the life-world (‘transformation knowledge’).


14:40  Discussion moderated by Christian Werthmann


15:00  Break

15:30  Alejandro Echeverri: Managing Informal Growth in the Hills of Medellin


15:50  Edgar Pieterse: Speculations on the Nexus between Infrastructure, Social Power and Sustainability
The daunting implications of Africa's urban transition is slowly coming into view for policy makers and activists. There is growing realisation that most of the new urban dwellers, alongside existing residents, are condemned to make their way in the world amidst large-scale urban dysfunction and informalised economic and residential conditions. The constitutive nature of the informal intimates limited resources (small tax bases) to address historical backlogs and future demand, reinforcing a variety of overwhelming pressures in the city. This reflection will explore how infrastructure investment imperatives can be recast to simultaneously attend to greater resource efficiency, social inclusion and economic dynamism. In order to open up debate, four stylized scenarios will be prevented: status quo, green status quo city, smart African city, and the adaptive city. An argument will be mounted to favour the adaptive city, instead of more-of-the-same or technological fantasies.


16:10 Discussion moderated by Christian Werthmann


16:30  Conclusion and Discussion moderated by Christian Werthmann


18:00 Drinks

Saturday, November 23
Doctoral College (two parallel sessions in Forum and Foyer)
Location: TU München, Vorhoelzer Forum, 5th floor, Arcisstr. 21, Munich

9:00 Christian Werthmann: Welcome

Track 1


9:15 Oluwafemi Ayodeji Olajide: Application of Sustainable Livelihood Approach to Poverty Alleviation in Lagos Informal Settlements; Nigeria

9:45 Christina Milos: Anticipating Industrial Urbanization in Nigeria's Emerging Oil Sands Belt; Nigeria

10:15 Ademola Olusola Omoegun: Investigating the Impacts of Street Trader Displacements and the Role of the Right to the City Concept in a Rapidly Urbanising African City; Nigeria

10:45 Coffee Break

Latin America

11:15 Jennifer Tucker: Frontiers of the Formal in Ciudad del Este’s Economy of Circulation; Paraguay

11:45 Carlos Felix Raspall Galli: Informal Methods for Material and Digital Production; Argentina

12:15 Fernanda Maria Lonardoni: Meeting Urban Housing Needs through Informal Rental Markets: Opportunities and Constraints for Landlords and Tenants; Brazil

12:45 Lunch Break


13:30 Hany Adel Abo El Wafa Moustafa: Modeling Urban Growth Dynamics: A Spatial Scenario Approach for the City of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; Ethiopia

14:00 Sílvia Manuela Branco Jorge: Maputo Peri-central Self-produced Areas in the New Millennium; Mozambique

14:30 Edwin Oyaro Ondieki: The ‘Rooming’ Tenements of Nairobi: A study of Domestic Lifestyles and Architecture; Kenya

15:00 Fanny Frick: Conceiving Non-formal Flood Risk Management in Accra, Ghana: Barriers to Overcome and Room for Manoeuvre; Ghana

15:30 Coffee break

16:00 Esther Yeboah Danso-Wiredu: “Just Ok in Our Little Corner”: The Plight Of Old Fadama Slum Dwellers – Accra; Ghana

16:30 Carin Combrinck: Determining Appropriate Strategies for Architectural Intervention in the In-Situ – Upgrade of Informal Settlements; South Africa

17:00 Karen Hetz: Locked-in in its Low-income Housing Policy? – Exploration of Limits of the Urban Planning System to Adapt to Challenges of Informal Growth and Climate Change in Johannesburg; South Africa

17:30 Raphaëlle Bisiaux: Rethinking Informal Housing and the Land Ownership Debate from Local Actors’ Perceptions: A Sociological Understanding of the Case of Thapathali Settlement’s Eviction in Kathmandu; Nepal

Track 2

Asia Pacific

9:15 Marianne Potvin: Humanitarian Urbanism – Defining New Sites of Humanitarian Interventions and Challenging the Informality-vulnerability Correlation; Afghanistan

9:45 M. Reza Parvizi: A Spatial Decision Support System for Introducing Place Vitality in the Redesigning of Low Cost Residential Land Use; Iran

10:15 Saeed Ud Din Ahmed: The Role of ‘Power’ in Informal Urbanism; Pakistan

10:45 Coffee Break

11:15 Neelopal Adri: Climate-induced Rural-urban Migration in Bangladesh: Experience of Migrants in Dhaka City; Bangladesh

11:45 Pranita Shrestha: The Story of Three Squatter Settlements – a Network Analysis of Urban Informality in Terms of Land and Shelter; Kathmandu

12:15 Thushara Samaratunga: High-density High-rise Vertical Living: An Appropriate Housing Solution for Low-income People in Colombo?; Sri Lanka

12:45 Lunch Break

Arab States

13:30 Hassan El Mouelhi: Culture And Informal Urban Development: The Case Study of Cairo’s Informal Settlements (ʻashwaʼeyat); Egypt

14:00 Mohamed Adel Nada: The Politics and Governance of Managing Urban Growth in Greater Cairo Region; An Actor-centred Institutionalist Analysis; Egypt

Latin America

14:30 Hector Becerril Miranda: Brazilian Housing Governance and Municipal Policy [Trans]formation[s]; From Favela-Bairro to Morar Carioca: Investigating the Case of Rio de Janeiro through Slum Upgrading Instrumentation; Brazil

15:00 Susana Restrepo Rico: Comprehensive Upgrading of Informal Settlements in Latin America – The Importance of Community Participation in Sustainable Upgrading Projects; Latin America

15:30  Coffee Break

16:00 Joseph Claghorn: Generative Landscapes in the Informal City: Design Methodologies for Landscape Form in Complex, Self-Ordering and Indeterminate Contexts; three sites in Latin America

16:30 Gabriel Duarte: Infrascapes: Informality and the Effects of Mobility Infrastructure on Rio de Janeiro’s Urban Form; Brazil

Asia Pacific

17.00 Christian Obermayr: Sustainable City Development in Indonesia? Innovative Governance Approaches Concerning Marginal Settlements; Indonesia

17:30 Ninik Suhartini: Urban Governance and Management in Developing Countries: a Case Study of Informal Settlements in Jayapura, Papua; Indonesia

18:00 Final remarks moderated by Christian Werthmann