Urban Recovery

Urban recovery is conceived as a process that is triggered by different acts of rupture and erasure. These acts impact both the tangible and the intangible dynamics of the city and include occupation, unjust development planning, economic decline, conflict and natural disaster. Urban recovery is therefore neither a 'post' condition nor a physically bounded process. It is intertwined with displacement, politics and power relations across temporal and geographic moments. In its extreme form, it is a process of reconfiguration that responds to all urban vulnerabilities and injustices.

This thematic area explores different models and approaches to urban recovery. It investigates how the spatial, socio-cultural, and imagined dimensions of urban existence are recovered or unarchived. The research focuses on post-war recovery of historic cities and landscapes in the Arab region, and advocates for culture as a catalyst for more people-centered, place-specific, and heritage-led strategies of recovery. In practice, it operates within a framework that is bottom-up, participatory, socially just, and inclusive.