New ICTA-UAB map shows success, concerns and challenges of the transition away from fossil fuels and coal industry in Australia

Resistance against massive coal-mining in Australia and a growing movement for a ‘just transition’ from fossil fuels have enjoyed some success but face massive challenges, as shown in a new map developed by researchers from the international ACKnowl-EJ project of the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB)  and the Australian Environmental Justice (AEJ) research team at the Centre for Urban Research (RMIT University.

ICTA-UAB researcher Victoria Reyes-García receives an ERC Consolidator Grant

ICREA researcher at ICTA-UAB Victoria Reyes- García has been graced with a Consolidator Grant of the European Research Council (ERC) for the development of a project aimed at bringing insights from local knowledge to climate change research.

Research to study the health effects of forests

The ICTA-UAB, CREAF and the "la Caixa" Bank Foundation recently presented the project "Healthy Forests for a Healthy Society".

Blockadia map by ICTA-UAB reveals global scale of anti-fossil fuel movement

A new interactive map by researchers of the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB) reveals the worldwide impact of resistance direct actions by people putting their own bodies in the way of fossil fuel projects.

The ICTA-UAB participated in the 100xCiencia.2 meeting in Alicante

The encounter, which was focused on the transfer of knowledge and technology, brought together representatives of 40 centres and research units “Severo Ochoa” and “María de Maeztu”, respectively.

Launch of the Alliance of Severo Ochoa Centres and Maria de Maeztu Units of Excellence

​ The Secretary of State for R&D+i, Carmen Vela, chaired the kickoff meeting of the new Severo Ochoa and Maria Maeztu Alliance of Excellence.

Green gentrification can limit the favourable effects of green areas on health

A scientific research conducted by ICTA-UAB and IMIM suggests that more socially disadvantaged neighbours do not benefit equally from the effects newly created green areas have on health.

Oil contamination in the Amazon modifies chemical composition of rivers

A scientific study by the ICTA-UAB and ISS-EUR quantifies the environmental impact of oil extraction activities and contamination in headwaters of the Amazon.

ICTA-UAB researchers alert that oil palm plantations produce infertility in tropical lands

Oil palm plantations are replacing 40% of tropical forests and 32% of basic grain crops, according to an ICTA-UAB research conducted in Guatemala.

UAB scientists and citizens can identify Barcelona's allergy-causing plants with the new Plant*tes app

The UAB Point of Information on Aerobiology (PIA) presented its new Plant*tes app in Barcelona as part of the BArcelona City Council's project entitled "Ciència Ciutadana als barris".

EJAtlas Includes 2,100 Case Studies on Socio-Environmental Conflicts Around the World

The Environmental Justice Atlas (EJAtlas), created by researchers of the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB), currently includes 2,100 cases of ecological distribution conflicts identified in different parts of the world.

Unrestricted Improvements in Fishing Technology Threaten the Future of Seafood

A study conducted by ICTA-UAB researcher Eric Galbraith shows that future improvement of fishing technology poses a threat for the global fishery that could be greater than climate change.

Ice age thermostat prevented extreme climate cooling

During the ice ages, an unidentified regulatory mechanism prevented atmospheric CO2 concentrations from falling below a level that could have led to runaway cooling, reports a study conducted by researchers of the ICTA-UAB and published online in Nature Geoscience this week.

The New Theory of Economic “Agrowth” Contributes to the Viability of Climate Policies

 ICTA-UAB researcher Jeroen van den Bergh publishes in Nature Climate Change a study in which he proposes a new economic theory compatible with the fight against climate change.

European Project to Analyse the Effects of Waste Generated by Tourism on Mediterranean Islands

An European study involving the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma e Barcelona will address and propose solutions to the effects of the increase of waste generated by tourism on Mediterranean islands during the summer season.

New ICTA-UAB 'Welcome Guide'

The new ICTA-UAB 'Welcome Guide' it is at your disposal now. With this document, we aim to help you discover the basics of the PhD programme, ICTA-UAB’s structure, etc.
Seminar: “Ethnicity, Race, and Equity in the City: Comparative Perspectives from the United States, France, and Spain”

Date: 2017-06-16

Seminar: “Ethnicity, Race, and Equity in the City: Comparative Perspectives from the United States, France, and Spain”

Date: Friday, June 16th 2017
Time: From 15 to 18h
Venue: Aula Magna. Fac. Geografia i Història UB. (c/ Montalegre, 6, 4º piso. Barcelona)

Co-organised by

- ICTA-UAB, Barcelona Lab for Urban Environmental Justice and Sustainability, GREENLULUS project (GA 678034)
- Espais Critics Research Group, project RESDERES (CSO2015-65066-R-RESDERES), Universitat de Barcelona (UB)

Prof. Anna Livia Brand (University of New Orleans/University of Texas-Austin)
Prof. Sylvie Tissot (Université de Paris 8)
Prof. Mikel Aramburu (University of Barcelona)

High Ground, Low Ground: The New Racial Topographies of Urban Development in the 21st Century

Anna Livia Brand is an Assistant Professor in Urban Design and the Built Environment in the Department of Planning and Urban Studies at the University of New Orleans and was recently an Emerging Scholar Fellow in Race and Gender in the Built Environment of the American City in the School of Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin. Anna received her Bachelor in Architecture from Tulane University, her Master in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of New Orleans and her PhD in Urban Planning from MIT. Anna Livia Brand’s research focuses on the historical development of and contemporary planning and design challenges in black mecca neighborhoods in the American North and South, including Chicago’s Bronzeville, New York’s Harlem, Washington D.C.’s Shaw, New Orleans’s Treme, Atlanta’s Sweet Auburn, and Houston's 3rd and 4th Wards. In her work, Anna is investigating and comparing how the redevelopment of the historic business and cultural corridors in these communities reflects ongoing racialization and changing commitments to equity and social justice for those who have traditionally suffered under urban revitalization policies. Her work also interrogates the gendered, racialized and resistant constructions of the built environment in these neighborhoods over time. 

A new racial topography is emerging in New Orleans. Since Hurricane Katrina, planners and policy makers have promoted redevelopment on the city’s historic high ground as the method and metric of rebuilding a more socially and environmentally just city. This approach was advanced through a myriad of processes, including prohibitions on black residents’ return to low-lying areas, public housing reform, and the exploitation of high ground opportunities. However, instead of promoting a greater incorporation of social and environmental justice, recovery has reflected a complicated terrain of racial-geographic restructuring, exposing neoliberal commitments to concentrating affluence, diversifying the city, and deterritorializing poor communities of color.                                   

New Orleans’s landscape of recovery exhibited is linked to racialized conceptualizations of land and property. Development attracting whites back to the city is expanding along the riverfront’s high ground topography. At the same time, low-lying white communities, such as Lakeview, have been able to secure their geographic claims. Conversely, poor communities of color who have inhabited high ground neighborhoods, such as Treme, are being displaced to low ground geographies. As such, whiteness, as a geographical and racial project, has been protected and expanded on high and low ground, while black geographies are problematized and dismantled by the state and private market. This research explores racial restructuring in the 21st century amidst the post-Katrina recovery of New Orleans. Findings from case studies on both low and high ground highlight the complexity of redevelopment in this post-disaster city and problematize the geographical, topographical, and racial restructuring of the city.


From «integration» to «social mix»: how French municipalities address (or obscure) the issue of race.

Sylvie Tissot is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Paris-8. Her academic research stands at the intersection of class analysis and urban studies. Her first book L’Etat et les quartiers (2007) examines how the “banlieue” has become a new social problem in France. She is also the author of Good Neighbors. Gentrifying diversity in Boston’s South End (2015), which analyzed the endorsement of “diversity” in upper middle class cultureHer new research project is a comparison of gay-friendly attitudes in New York and Paris. She has been a visiting scholar at the Center for European Studies (Harvard University) and the Institute for Public Knowledge (New York University). 

In the 1980s a growing concern emerged regarding French impoverished neighborhoods in what is called the “banlieues”. Yet rather than addressing poverty, urban policies have reinforced territorial stigmatization. In this talk I will examine local policies through language and categories used to define social ills and implement new programs. “Integration” reflects how systemic socio-economic problems have been obscured while focusing on ethnic differences that should be erased. At the same time local policies claim to promote “social mix”, especially in social housing estates. To what extent does it question the French dominant approach to ethnic diversity? I argue that rather than addressing the question of discrimination, the promotion of social mix in urban policies reinforces segregation. This is especially the case in the new regeneration programs, which aims at demolishing housing estates in order to build more integrated buildings.


“I can not believe you don’t know who “Los Chichos” are”: Experiences of periphery and scales of injustice in the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona

Mikel Aramburu obtained his PhD in Social Anthropology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and is a Professor of Social Anthropology at the Universitat de Barcelona. Among others, his published works include « The others and us: Images of the Immigrant in the Ciutat Vella of Barcelona », for which he received the XXth Prize for Cultural Research Marques de Lozoya) and « Ethnic Minorities and Housing Policies». His research examines urban studies, nationalism, and migrations. Before working at the UB, he was in charge of the research area « Housing and Public Space » in the Instituto de Gobierno y Políticas Públicas (IGOP) at the UAB. He is currently the PI of the project « Popular Conceptions of Social Justice and Austerity Policies  (CSO2015-67368-P).

The expression “peripheral experience” is a political concept that refers to the relationship of some groups or areas with an economically, politically, and culturally dominating center. I am interested here in the peripheral experiences produced by the urban segregation of the working class, mainly from a foreign origin, living in the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona. Segregation here is expressed in the dispossession of economic, social, and cultural capitals, which makes it more difficult for these working-class foreign residents to access certain resources, especially labor resources, and which also situates them at the margin of cultural hegemony and self-recognition of the city and of the nation (or nations). Scales of injustice refer to the diverse geographical locations of the dominating forces that condition these different types of segregation and that can create very diverse positionalities, including indignation, reclamation, naturalization, negation, and indifference. Scales refer first to the dialectical relationship “neighborhood-city” and second to the relation of redistribution with the State (both Spanish and Catalan). 

While the “experience of the periphery” is a highly politicized topic, much social science research on Barcelona has ignored it for the past 25 years. I argue that this experience has been marginalized because of several factors, including a priority given to upward social mobility, to the negation of class-based politics by neoliberal political frames, and by the hegemonic discourse of “civic catalanism”. In this presentation, I present recent research on the experience of residents raised in different working-class neighborhoods of the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona who have experienced some form of geographic or social mobility and examine how social divisions meet with resistance and lived adaptations. 

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