Building a socially smart community of users in times of uneven urban development – The post-industrial transformation of old Tobacco factory in Ljubljana

Authors: Matjaz Ursic*, University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences
Topics: Cultural Geography, Urban and Regional Planning, Social Geography
Keywords: socially smart community, uneven urban development, post-industrial transformation, social networks, Ljubljana
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/7/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Ambassador Ballroom, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The discourse on smart urban development is still prevalently concentrated around the concept of smart cities, innovation and creativity in relation to economical and physical transformations of cities. Contrary to this perspective, the paper tries to address the potential of socio-spatial innovation and link it to the establishment of socially smart community of SME’s, NGO’s and other users that is inherently inclusive and tries to provide alternatives to damaging effects of uneven urban development. The barriers that obstruct the process of building a socially smart community of users are numerous and open different questions regarding the urban capacity building or empowerment of user groups under circumstances that influence their working and living conditions. Is it even possible to accumulate enough social, symbolic and cultural capital to produce a different social construction of space that would establish, interweave now splitted groups of users/actors/stakeholders into a community that thrives in environments that go through tense periods of urban transformation. The problematic is presented through the UEL (Urban Education Live) project and analysis of social networks (social mapping) in the case of post-industrial transformation of an old Tobacco factory in the city of Ljubljana (Slovenia).

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