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Humanities and the City Conference 2017

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8 Somapah Rd

8 Somapah Road

Singapore, 487372

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Humanities and the City

A one-day conference by Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

Singapore University of Technology and Design

Date: Dec 5, 2017 (Tuesday)

Time: 8.30am – 5.30pm, with a film screening at 1.30pm

Venue: Library Training Centre, First Floor, SUTD Library,

Singapore University of Technology and Design

Conference Abstract

Cities are increasingly becoming the place where human beings choose to live, with city dwellers recently surpassing the inhabitants of the countryside in terms of numbers. According to the UN Habitat, about 6 out of every 10 people in the world are expected to reside in urban areas by 2030. It is also speculated that over 90 per cent of this growth will take place in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. This is the result of a process started more than 200 years ago, with the advent of the first industrial revolution. In other words, cities have become the most important place to gain access to capital and participate in activities of production.

Such a state of affairs poses immense challenges. On the one hand, there is the demographic growth of cities, posing problems of space constraints, human frictions and competition for resources. On the other, cities are becoming the pivot for all human activities, from businesses to culture. In the last decades, these challenges have been largely addressed from a technological perspective: the panacea being "smart cities", or cities characterized by an increased efficiency through technology.

This one-day conference proposes yet another angle that can possibly inject fresh perspectives to discourses about the city. What if we factor in the humanities? Here, we invite policymakers, academics, scientists, engineers and curious city dwellers to think with us how humanities disciplines such as philosophy, literature, history, art, cultural studies, and others can play a role in the constitution as well as the development of a city. Our conference will attempt to rise to that challenge by engaging with international speakers and Singapore-based researchers.



Conference Programme

8.30am-9.00am Registration with refreshments

9.00am-9.10am First opening address

Prof. Sun Sun Lim

Head of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS)

Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD)

9.10am-9.20am Second opening address

Prof. Chan Heng Chee

Director, Lee Kuan Yew Centre for Innovative Cities (LKYCIC)

9.20am-10.50am Keynote Discourse/Roundtable Discussion

“The Good City: Justice and Technology in 21st Century Capitalism”

Dr. Paolo Di Leo (HASS, SUTD)

Dr. John Powers (LKYCIC)

Dr. Nazry Bahrawi (HASS, SUTD)

Moderator: Prof. Jane M Jacobs, LKYCIC/Yale-NUS

10.50am-11.10am Coffee Break

11.10am-11.50am “City Scales and the Urban Humanities:

New Perspectives for Developing and Understanding Cities”

Prof. Lieven Ameel

University of Helsinki

President, Association of Literary Urban Studies

11.50am-12.30pm “The Communicative City in Asia”

Prof. Audrey Yue, National University of Singapore

12.30pm-1.30pm Lunch

1.30pm-3.00pm Film screening at Albert Hong Lecture Theatre

The Sound of Old Rooms (2011), a documentary set in Kolkata

Post-film discussion with Dr. Sandeep Ray (HASS, SUTD), Director

3.00pm-3.40pm “Maps in Post-Reunificaiton Hong Kong”

Dr. Elizabeth Ho, Assistant Professor, University of Hong Kong

3.40pm-4.00pm Coffee Break

4.00pm-5.00pm Panel discussion on literature and the city

Prof. Philip Holden, NUS (on Singapore)

Dr. Pallavi Narayan, NUS Press (on Istanbul)

Dr. Nuraliah Norasid, author of The Gatekeeper (on Singapore)

Moderator: Dr. Rhema Hokama, HASS, SUTD

5.00pm-5.20pm Closing remarks by Drs. Paolo and Nazry

5.30pm End of conference


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8 Somapah Rd

8 Somapah Road

Singapore, 487372

Singapore

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