Workshop — Geo-political Economies of (Post) Developmental Urbanization in East Asia



WORKSHOP DIRECTORS:

Jamie Doucette
Lecturer, School of Environment and Development, University of Manchester
jamie.doucette@manchester.ac.uk

Bae-Gyoon Park
Professor, Geography Education, Seoul National University
geopbg@snu.ac.kr

WORKSHOP PARTICIPANTS:

Carolyn Cartier, Professor of Geography and China Studies, School of International Studies, University of Technology Sydney
“‘Cut from the County’: Mao-era Cities and their Territorial Legacies in Contemporary China”

Eli Friedman, Assistant Professor, International and Comparative Labor, Cornell University
“Just-in-Time Urbanization? Managing migration, citizenship, and schooling in the Chinese city”

Jim Glassman, Professor, Geography, University of British Columbia
“Developmental Bureaucratic States, Developmental Network States and the Geopolitical Economy of Cold War Industrialization in Ulsan and Kaohsiung”

Heidi Gottfried, Associate Professor, Sociology, Wayne State University
“The Phoenix Rises: Tokyo’s Origin as a Global city”

Laam Hae, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, York University
“Traveling Policy: City Marketing and the Neoliberal Turn of Urban Studies in South Korea”

Jinn-yuh Hsu, Professor, Department of Geography, National Taiwan University
“Hsinchu Technopolis: A Socio-technical Imaginary of Modernity in Taiwan?”

Joo-Hyoung Ji, Assistant Professor, Sociology Department, Kyungnam University
“The Making of the (Real) Gangnam Style: A Cultural Political Economy of Compressed Urbanization in South Korea”

Christina Kim, PhD Candidate, Anthropology, The New School for Social Research
“Bridges of Ambition to North Korea: Economy of Anticipation and Materiality of Aspiration in Dandong, China”

Jana Kleibert, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Dynamics of Economic Spaces, Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning
“Enclave urbanism in Metro Manila”

Kah-Wee Lee, Assistant Professor, Architecture, National University of Singapore
“Normalizing Exception/Beyond consumerism: Casino Urbanisms in Singapore and Macau ”

Christina Moon, Assistant Professor of Fashion Studies, School of Art and Design History and Theory, The New School, Parsons School of Design
“Fashion City: zones, markets, and diaspora across the US and Asia”

Joanna Phua, Doctoral Candidate, Political Science, The Graduate Center, City University of New York
“Circuits and Transfers of the Cold War: From Prescriptive to Neo-Developmental Urbanism in Asia”

CALL FOR WORKSHOP PAPERS:

Processes of East Asian urbanization are unique because they have been deeply influenced by state-led strategies of national development that were deeply interwoven with Cold War geo-political economies of capitalist development. Existing studies on East Asian cities, however, have not been able to properly address this unique feature of urbanization because they have not made sufficient efforts to understand cities in relation to broader politico-economic processes of East Asian capitalist development. These studies tend to take a localist approach that regards the city as a social object that is territorially contained and institutionally coherent. As such, previous works on East Asian cities have privileged the urban scale as their primary unit of analysis, to the neglect of wider socio-spatial processes that condition urban development. For instance, the roles played by transnational networks of capital, migrants, and various forms of expertise in creating spaces of ‘national’ urban development during the Cold War have often been neglected. Likewise, the multi-scalar interactions between urban development and wider configurations of power, regulation, and ideology have remained understudied.

With this problem orientation, this workshop aims to collect papers that address the multi-scalar dynamics and geo-political economic contexts of East Asian capitalist development. We seek work that characterizes the processes of East Asian urbanization as a form of “developmental urbanization” by paying special attention to how East Asian urban development during the period from the 1950s to the 1980s was heavily influenced by socio-spatial processes of national development that included 1) state-led developmentalist industrialization and 2) post-colonial nation-building activities. East Asian states actively promoted the development of national urban networks to enhance the territorial integrity of the nation, and prioritized urban infrastructure to support mass production and economic growth. Under the state’s big push, urban processes took place very rapidly in strategically selected areas of political and economic importance. The outcome was 1) spatio-temporal compression of urban development (thereby resulting in ‘compressed urbanization’), 2) spatial selectivity in urban development (thereby producing ‘spaces of exception’), and 3) uneven geographies of power (thereby shaping uneven geographies of urban contestation).

While neoliberal and market-friendly processes of urban development have gradually become more influential than national developmentalist efforts since the end of the Cold War, the institutional and material legacies of developmental urbanism are still influential in East Asian urban development. The legacies of developmental urbanism, combined with the influences of post-Cold War geo-political economies and neo-liberal globalization, have resulted in the rise of ‘neo-developmental urbanization.’ This process has thus contributed to existing urban problems in East Asia such as urban displacement, divided cities, and struggles over public space and the right to the city. Therefore, this workshop equally solicits papers that address how processes of developmental urbanization have been transformed since the 1990s in relation to neoliberal globalization and post-cold war geo-political economies.

Some topics might include but are not limited to: compressed urbanization, trans-local connections, postcolonial urbanism, urban mega projects, speculative urbanization, the construction state, spaces of exceptions, zoning technologies, urban-industrial experiments, circuits of developmentalist expertise, infrastructural spaces, contentious politics and urban development, and urban social movements.