Planning Futures? Panel 2: Decolonizing Planning



This one-day conference organized by Assistant Professor Hiba Bou Akar, brought leading planning and urban scholars who are re-thinking the field of urban planning and policy from postcolonial, decolonial, and abolitionist perspectives. It asked the following two interrelated questions: What are the futures of the field of urban planning, and what futures we ought to plan for when the future that is imagined in most of the world is one of state violence, dispossession, exploitation, war and conflict, pandemics, and climate change?

Panel 2: Decolonizing Planning
Moderator: Hiba Bou Akar, Assistant Professor of Urban Planning and Director of the Post Conflict Cities Lab, Columbia GSAPP

Ananya Roy, Professor, The Meyer and Renee Luskin Chair in Inequality and Democracy at the University of California, Los Angeles
Andrea Roberts, Assistant Professor of Urban Planning and an Associate Director of the Center for Housing & Urban Development at Texas A&M University
Oren Yiftachel, Professor of Planning and Geography, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Vanessa Watson, Professor of city planning in the School of Architecture, Planning and Geomatics at the University of Cape Town

What does it mean to “decolonize planning,” both normatively and in practice? How do we learn from, theorize, practice, as well as differentiate between postcolonial, decolonial, and abolitionist planning while placing these movements in their proper and distinct historical and academic contexts? And given historical and ongoing realities of settler colonialism, white supremacy, economic precarity, and neoliberal inequality, and occupation, what role can and should planners play in engaging the field’s historical origins, and what future direction(s) represent possibility and potential for the field to envision and inscribe socially just and contextually suited interventions?

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