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Course Description
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Political Science/Economics: An Urban Approach to Spain and Europe
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB)
Barcelona, Spain

Subject Area(s) Level(s) Instruction in Credits Contact Hours Prerequisites
Political Science, Economics, Sociology 300 English 3 45 N/A

DESCRIPTION
The study of the recent evolution of Spanish society and its integration in Europe is analyzed in this course through its urban dimension. The economic and social development of Spain, as well as many challenges that the country face today (as immigration, lack of economic competitiveness or low innovation level) have origin (and solution) at urban level. In order to understand them we need to refer to specific urban-related theories and concepts from sociology, economy and politics. The course will cover these general theories and concepts using European (and Spanish) cities as examples and case-studies, making special emphasis to their multicultural dimension.

OBJECTIVES

1. To highlight the urban dimension of society today, making reference to the different phenomena that face European (and Spanish) cities.

2. Introduce the students in economic, political and social factors that configure urban Europe in order to understand its development, and that of Spain, in a global world.

3. To analyze the process of Spanish integration in the European Union under the perspective of its impact on the urban areas, highlighting the impacts (both positive and negative) in the economic, social and political dimensions.

4. Provide the tools to understand the multicultural dimension of the European society, both from the point of view of the national minorities, the immigration and the cultural diversity.

5. To explain and analyze the link between multiculturalism and the urban phenomena, as a "microcosmos" where we can find reproduced the dynamics of multiculturality, focusing in the Spanish case.


Organization of the course:

45 hours divided in 30 lessons of 1,5 hours each. In order to be able to cover the different issues planned the course is divided in two parts. The first one (session 1 to 15) will introduce the student to the urban phenomena in Europe, the role of European Union in urban development and how the integration in the European Union has affected Spanish (urban) development. The second part will focus on the multicultural dimension of Europe, again with an urban perspective and Spanish examples.

Methodology:


The sessions will combine theoretical lessons and practical examples, inviting experts in the different issues analyzed. Field studies might be organized as well.

CONTENT
First part of the course: Urban Europe

Session 1
The urban reality in Europe and Spain: Europe as a global urban region
Reading:
  • Berg, L van den, et al. (1992) Urban Europe, a study of growth and decline
  • Clark, David. Urban World/Global City. London: Routledge, 1996 (Chapter IV: Urban development as a global phenomenon).
Session 2
Urban economy and sociology: notions to set the debate in Europe
Reading: Jacobs, J. The economy of the cities

Session 3
The transition of cities to a post-fordist economy: The change in the location and distribution of activities on territory.
Reading: Harvey, David. The Condition of Postmodernity. An Enquiry into the Origins of Cultural Change. Cambridge, Mass: B. Blackwell, 1990 (various chapters)

Session 4
Global cities and nodal regions. The concept of "global city": what opportunities and problems?
Reading: Sassen, Saskia The global city. N.J: Princeton Univ. Press, 2001 (Chapter X and Epilogue).

Session 5
Case study analysis: Are European cities global?

Session 6
Metropolis and small cities in Europe: the changing functions of cities integrated in metropolitan regions
Reading: Camagni, R. (1994): "From city Hierarchy to city Networks: Reflections about and emerging paradigm", in Cuadrado-Roura, J, Nijkamp, P and Salva, P. (eds), Moving frontiers, Economic restructuring, Regional development and Emerging Networks, Avebury.

Session 7
Urban management: a solution for European cities?
Reading: Colquhoun, Ian. Urban Regeneration. An international perspective. London: B.T. Batsford Ltd. 1995 (Chapters 1 and 4)

Session 8
Film viewing and debate: Exemplifying the concept of "post-fordist" city
Film: "Roger and Me"

Session 9
The role of cities in the European Union: policies and programs
(Invited speaker)

Session 10
Lobbying for an Urban Europe: an overview of urban-related lobbies at EU level.
(Invited speaker)

Session 11
Spain in the European context: overview of Spanish economy and society
Reading: Aubet, Maria José (1995) Democracias desiguales (capitulo 5: España). Ediciones del Serbal, Barcelona

Session 12
Spain in Europe: from autarchy to full recognition
Reading: Powell, Ch. (2001) Fifteen years on: Spanish membership in the European Union revisited. Paper presented at the conference "From isolation to integration: 15 years of Spanish and Portuguese Membership in Europe", Minda de Gunzburg Centre for European Studies, Harvard University, 2-3 November 2001.

Session 13
EU policies and its impact on Spanish society: Economic (convergence policy, PAC), Political (regulations and treaties), Social (unemployment, cultural changes)
Reading: Closa, C. (2004) Spain and the European Union, Houndmills Palgrave Macmillan.

Session 14
EU programs in Spain (I): the role of cohesion funds in Spanish economic development
Reading: materials, papers brought by professor

Session 15
EU programs in Spain (II): the policies for urban development
Reading: materials, papers brought by professor

SECOND PART OF THE COURSE: The city as incubator of a multicultural society

Session 16
Introduction to multiculturalism: typologies and models of multiculturalism. Premises to interpret the multicultural processes.
Reading: Kymlicka, Will (1996) Ciudadania Multicultural, Paidós, Madrid

Session 17
The analysis of multiculturalism: Europe versus the US approach
Reading: Niessen, J. and Schibel, Y. (eds) EU and US approaches to the management of immigration: comparative perspectives, Brussels: Migration Policy Group; 459-489.

Session 18
Multiculturalism in Spain: national minorities and immigration: the Catalan case
Reading: Zapata Barrero, R. (2005) "Immigration and self government of national minorities; a conceptual comparative framework". ECPR The General Conference – Budapest 2005.

Session 19
The city as incubator of multicultural society: setting the scene
Reading: Capel Tatjer, L. (2004) "Multiculturalism in the city: managing diversity", in: Wood, Phil (eds), Intercultural city Reader. Book 1., Comedia, Essex.

Session 20
The role of multicultural diversity in urban development: the key to creativity
Reading: Florida, Richard. The rise of creative class. And how it’s transforming work, leisure community and everyday life. New York:Basic Books. 2002 (preface and Chapter 12)

Session 21
Workshop: Is your city creative?

Session 22
Managing the multicultural society: experiences from Europe
Reading: Bloomfield, J. and Bianchini, F.(2004): Planning for the Intercultural city, Comedia network.

Session 23
Managing the multicultural society: the case of Barcelona
Case study

Session 24
Field visit: Raval, Barcelona´s multicultural neighborhood

Session 25
Film viewing and analysis:
En construcción (1999)

Session 26
Conclusions of the course

Session 27
Student presentations

Session 28
Exam

Bibliography:
  • Capel Tatjer, L. (2004) "Multiculturalism in the city: managing diversity", in: Wood, Phil (eds), Intercultural city Reader. Book 1., Comedia, Essex.
  • Wood Phil (ed) (2004) The Intercultural city Reader. Book 1. Comedia, Essex
  • Kymlicka, Will (1996) Ciudadania Multicultural, Paidós, Madrid
  • Aubet, Maria José (1995) Democracias desiguales (capitulo 5: España). Ediciones del Serbal, Barcelona.
  • Niessen, J. and Schibel, Y. (eds) EU and US approaches to the management of immigration: comprative perspectives, Brussels: Migration Policy Group; 459-489.
  • Zapata Barrero, R. (2005) "Immigration and self government of national minorities; a conceptual comparative framework". ECPR The General Conference – Budapest 2005.
  • Aurabell, G. y Zapata Barrero, R (eds) (2005) Inmigración y procesos de cambio: Europa y el mediterraneo en el contexto global, Barcelona, Icaria.










 
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