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Heritage, power and conflict.
An ongoing investigation involving DPU, Urban Lab, CCHS, that explores the intersection between heritage, mobility and spatial justice in the midst of political transition. Particularly, the ongoing project examines the ways in which power and resistance operate in the conservation and management of historic sites during political transitions in post conflict cities (including but not limited to the cities of Yangon, Myanmar and Habana, Cuba). Heritage increasingly features in debates of all sorts, from climate change, sustainable development, human security, multiculturalism and conflict resolution. Critical studies have greatly contributed to shift the meaning of heritage from the idea of a homogeneous single identity toward a polifony of values, and from the idea of authoritative expertise to that of dissonance. Yet this remains disconnected from the practice, while heritage is still very much framed by normative discourse that leaves many people and places underrepresented. It is also increasingly used to alleviate economic problems or as a driver for growth and peace-building within a neoliberal developmental approach. Delving into ideas of heritage as both a space and a set of (power) relations and daily practices through which that space is shaped, contested and negotiated, the research questions: how civil society organizations shape their agency in the city transformation; what are the options to leverage heritage to promote equitable mobility and spatial justice; who defines what is heritage
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