Category Archives: Blog

December 1 | Great New Books in the Humanities: Barrio Rising

barrio-risingFrom our friends at the NYU Center for the Humanities:

Beginning in the late 1950s political leaders in Venezuela built what they celebrated as Latin America’s most stable democracy. But outside the staid halls of power, in the gritty barrios of a rapidly urbanizing country, another politics was rising—unruly, contentious, and clamoring for inclusion. Based on years of archival and ethnographic research in Venezuela’s largest public housing community, Barrio Rising delivers the first in-depth history of urban popular politics before the Bolivarian Revolution, providing crucial context for understanding the democracy that emerged during the presidency of Hugo Chávez. Continue reading

“‘This is not a crisis; it is a scam”: Guest blogger Sophie Gonick on Speculation Nation

Guest blogger Sophie Gonick Speculation Nation stillreviews Speculation Nation (Brown/Gruffat, 2014) and the panel discussion that took place after a screening of the film at UnionDocs on November 1.  Gonick joined the Center for European and Mediterranean Studies at NYU in Fall 2015 as a Faculty Fellow/Assistant Professor. She holds a Ph.D. and a Master in City Planning (M.C.P.) from the Department of City & Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley, and an A.B. from Harvard University. Her recent research examines mortgage lending and financialization, immigrant activism, and contemporary urban mobilizations in Spain. She has also written about squatting and urban informality in Madrid, most recently for the article ‘Interrogating Madrid’s Slum of Shame: Urban Expansion, Race, and Placed-Based Activism in the Cañada Real Galiana,’ in Antipode: A Journal of Radical Geography. Continue reading

Internship Opportunity: Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit

From the Mayor’s office:

The Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit (CAU) is the direct link between the Mayor and New York’s communities. CAU organizes participation in key mayoral initiatives at the community level through direct contact with community boards, organizations, and city residents. CAU plays an active role in public events across the five boroughs and in connecting to New York’s diverse communities. Continue reading

UDL Director Gianpaolo Baiocchi reads from THE CIVIC IMAGINATION (2014)

Nov 5, 2015,  5:00 PM-6:30 PM, 1 Washington Place, Dean’s Conference Room (801) 

Gallatin Teachers Reading, a Writing Program event series at which professors read from recently published books, offers a glimpse into the Gallatin faculty’s latest scholarship.

Gianpaolo Baiocchi will read from The Civic Imagination: Making a Difference in American Political Life (2014, co-authored with Elizabeth Bennett, Alissa Cordner, Stephanie Savell, and Peter Klein), which draws on ethnographic studies to understand how contemporary Americans think about and work toward social and political change.

Peder Anker, Louise Harpman, and Mitchell Joachim will read from their collaborative book, Global Design: Elsewhere Envisioned, which explores design solutions to address global warming.

Mitchell Joachim will also read from Super Cells: Building with Biology (co-authored with Nina Tandon), which examines technology and artworks built using cells.


Interview with Leanne Brown, author of GOOD AND CHEAP

Leanne Brown’s cookbGood and Cheap 2Dook, Good and Cheap, has garnered glowing national attention since its massively successful Kickstarter campaign in 2014. Good and Cheap is a cookbook that works within tight budgets and the SNAP/food stamps program; it employs the “buy one, give one” model and promises a free book or subsidized books to people in need through a national system of nonprofits. The PDF is available for free on and has been downloaded more then 900,000 times. The Urban Democracy Lab spoke with Leanne to discuss her thoughts on food justice, SNAP, and the future of Good and Cheap: Continue reading

Transforming the City: Using Culture to Address Intractable Problems with Antanas Mockus

Guest-blogger Emma HAntanas-Mockus-marcha-Vida-549x3451attemer reviews an October 9 conference at the Open Society Foundation-New York featuring Antanas Mockus, former mayor of Bogotá, Colombia.  The small afternoon event was co-sponsored by the Urban Democracy Lab and also included Andrea Batista Schlesinger, Deputy Director of US Programs at the OSF and Pedro Abramovay, Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, OSF.

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Sam Schwartz Lecture, Nov. 11th: “Street Smart: The Rise of Cities and the Fall of Cars”

riseofcitiesFrom our friends at NYU Department of Art History, Urban Design and Architecture Studies:

A lecture by author Sam Schwartz,  Sam Schwartz Engineering PLLC; former New York City Traffic Commissioner (1982-1986) and First Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation (1987-1990).

Wednesday, November 11, 6:30 pm
New York University Department of Art History
Silver Center, Room 301
100 Washington Square East (entrance on Waverly Place)
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Exhibition: “In the Shadow of the Highway: Robert Moses’ Expressway & the Battle for Downtown” October 27 – March 15, 2016

13-lomex-brochureFrom our friends at A/P/A Institute NYU:

The NYC Department of Records and Information Services’ Municipal Archives presents an exhibit in collaboration with Below the Grid Lab and the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU entitled In the Shadow of the Highway: Robert Moses’ Expressway and the Battle for Downtown.
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