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Individual Paper: Institute for Sustainable Urban Development

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ISU – Institute for Sustainable Urban Development is a joint venture between The City of Malmö and Malmö University. The Institute deals with sustainability in its broad sense, which includes ecological, economical, social and cultural issues.

Kulturuppdraget, the ISU Cultural Assignment, follows up the Commission for a Socially Sustainable Malmö. One of the conclusions of the Commission was that based on socio-economical statistics, the social situation in Malmö should be worse than it actually is. The commission suggested that this resilience might be due to the strength of Malmö’s culture and cultural diversity. Despite this, the complexities of Malmö’s cultural life are a mostly untapped resource.

Globalization has entailed an unprecedented planetary flow of information, extraction riches, and people – the undemocratic character of this process coupled with the revolutionary changes following climate change has not elicited a satisfyingly democratic response, counteracting the widespread sense of alarm and insecurity.

From the perspective of policy making, the diverse culture of Malmö has everything to gain from being approached through the value of cultural equity, a cultural citizenship. Historically, public institutions were formed in different situations and from other ideas. As a result, and in the light of Malmö’s rapidly changing demography and position as a global city, institutions are subject to criticism for their lack of inclusion, representation – and solidarity. Solidarity with differences that bring with them other ways of being and expressing, based on the right to describe, define and change the city.
Traditional citizenship is mainly a legal status, defining who is entitled to the same rights and freedoms as other citizens. A more broad definition of citizenship could, however, be argued. The American cultural anthropologist Renato Rosaldo notes that citizenship – in the meaning of being included in a community and recognized as being fully able to bear the powers to describe, define and change this group or community – in contemporary democracies is gradual and unevenly distributed. However, any democratic citizenship is defined and measured in terms of social equity, where barring equity is enacted as a privileged value (Rosaldo 1994).

The ISU Cultural Assignment is interested in investigating the idea of cultural citizenship and what practical implications for cultural planning, provision and development this notion would have for Malmö and its inhabitants.
During the coming year the ISU Cultural Assignment’s activities consist of:
1, Conducting a pilot study on cultural values. A questionnaire study and interviews with the purpose of increasing knowledge about what Malmö’s citizens find valuable and desirable. What activities are seen as valuable, with whom and in which places these values become realized.
2, The result from the pre-study could then be used as an instrument to compare the values, even groups and places, to the current institutional activities, if they respond to representation of difference and cultural equity, and to the overall allocation and mapping of resources.
3, As a third step, the results of ISU Cultural Assignment would become a part of proposals which support the development of Malmö as a city where cultural diversities are creatively supported from outside in, and from bottom up.


Day: 2018-08-24
Start time: 11:15
Duration: 00:15
Room: ABF (Stora Salen)
Track: - Other - (fill submission note below)



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