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Relational Urbanity: Perspectives of a Global Urban Society beyond Universalism and Localism Relationale Urbanität: Perspektiven einer globalen urbanen Gesellschaft jenseits von Universalismus und Lokalismus

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Current debates in urban studies are questioning the theoretical and empirical adequacy of the term city for understanding urban dynamics, North and South. A related concern is the arbitrariness of delimitations of expanding, interwoven and hyper-connected agglomerations. Established regionalizations of urban areas or cities are thus fading away in more than one sense, demanding conceptual and methodological consequences. Building on these debates, the paper stresses the relevance of societal or socio-spatial dimensions of urbanity. The need to contextualize them across scales finds its expression in the term global urban society. Taking this idea further, we propose a research programme centred on a conceptual and empirical investigation of a relational urbanity.

Aktuelle Debatten der Stadtforschung stellen die empirische und theoretische Angemessenheit des Stadtbegriffs als Zugang zum Verständnis aktueller Stadtentwicklungen in Frage, im Norden wie im Süden. Auch die Abgrenzung von wachsenden und vielfach verflochtenen Agglomerationen erscheint immer arbiträrer. Urbane Regionalisierungen lösen sich somit in vielerlei Hinsicht auf, was die Frage nach konzeptionellen und methodologischen Konsequenzen aufwirft. Anknüpfend an diese Debatten verweist der Beitrag auf die zentrale Bedeutung gesellschaftlicher bzw. sozialräumlicher Dimensionen von Urbanität. Diese müssen gleichwohl skalenübergreifend kontextualisiert werden, was im Begriff einer globalen urbanen Gesellschaft zum Ausdruck kommt. Diese Perspektive mündet im Entwurf eines Forschungsprogramms, das einen konzeptionellen wie empirischen Zugang einer relationalen Urbanität entwickelt.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2019

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  • Since its beginning in 1895, the Geographische Zeitschrift has been one of the leading journals in its field. To this day, its mission is to be the voice of both theory-based empirical research and the theoretical and methodological debate in human geography. As an internationally respected professional journal, it is committed to the highest standards. The originality, high quality and topicality of its articles are guaranteed by international expert referees. By transcending traditional subject boundaries, the Geographische Zeitschrift makes a decisive contribution to the continuing evolution of human geography. It prints German- and English-language articles.
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