The Inaugural Symposium of the Drexel University Center for Mobilities Research and Policy
19th April, 2010, 3-6pm
Behrakis Grand Hall in the Creese Student Center
(33rd & Chestnut St.), Drexel University
Welcome from Donna Murasko, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences
Introduction by Mimi Sheller, Director of the Center for Mobilities Research & Policy
Professor John Urry (Lancaster University, UK)
“Does Mobility Have a Future?”
Followed by Panelists:
Prof. Ole B. Jensen, CMUS, Aalborg University, Denmark
“Mobility challenges: theoretical perspective on research into contemporary urban mobilities”
This presentation addresses the challenges to understanding mobility in the contemporary city, drawing on the “mobility turn” within social science. The approach advocated is a cross-disciplinary one drawing on sociology, geography, urban planning and design, and cultural studies. The talk will suggest a three-layered research framework for urban mobilites research that deals with at least three major issues; 1) the physical city, its infrastructures and technological hardware/software, 2) policies and planning strategies for urban mobility and 3) the lived everyday life in the city.
Prof. Sven Kesselring, Technische Universität München, Germany
“New mobilities regimes: mobility, power and ambivalence in the risk society”
The nature of modernity is ambivalent: the more successful modern principles are, the more predominant their negative side effects become. This structural ambivalence shapes the modern perception of mobility. As a highly valued principle it stands for autonomy and self-actualization, creativity, innovation, social change and progress. But the steady increase in mobilities endangers the ecological fundaments of societies, their social cohesion, cultural embeddings and the rooted identities of communities and cultures. This talk takes these issues into account and investigates business travel and corporate mobility regimes. It shows the social impacts of corporate mobility discourses such as normalization, rationalization and time-space compression. It concludes with an overview of mobilities research involving studies ranging from everyday mobility practice to aeromobilities.
Dr. Peter Adey, Keele University, UK
“Mobility, security, life”
This presentation will look at the relationship between mobility and practices of securitization; the problem of how the need to keep on moving can come to threaten or strangle life itself. Security will be posited as an important thread in future mobilities research agendas.
Reception will follow at 6pm. This event is free and open to the public, but please RSVP to Mimi Sheller email@example.com if planning to attend.
John Urry is Distinguished Professor and Director of the Centre for Mobilities Research at Lancaster University, England. He holds a B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. from Cambridge University. He is one of the founding editors of the journal Mobilities, and has been the editor of the International Library of Sociology since 1990 (Routledge). He is a member of the executive committee and council of the U.K. Academy of Social Sciences (2006-), and has twice served as Chair of HEFCE’s Research Assessment Exercise Sociology Panel (1996, 2001). He has extensive publications including the recent books After the Car (with D. Kingsley, 2009), Mobilities (2007), Mobile Technologies of the City (with M. Sheller, 2006), Tourism Mobilities (with M. Sheller, 2004), Global Complexity (2003), The Tourist Gaze (2nd Ed, 2002), and Sociology Beyond Societies: mobilities for the 21st Century (2000).
Sven Kesselring holds a PhD in sociology from the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. He is the director of research of the mobil.TUM – an interdisciplinary project group on mobility and transport at the Technische Universität München (TUM) and co-founder of the Cosmobilities Network. He has published extensively in the field of interdisciplinary mobilities research, and has co-edited with Saulo Cwerner and John Urry: Aeromobilities (2009); and with Weert Canzler and Vincent Kaufmann Tracing Mobilities. Towards a cosmopolitan perspective (2008).
Ole B. Jensen is Professor of Urban Theory in the Department of Architecture, Design and Media Technology, Aalborg University, Denmark. He holds a BA in Political Science, MA in Sociology, PhD in Planning and Sociology. His main research areas are Urban Mobility, Performative Urban Technologies and City Branding.
Peter Adey is Lecturer in Cultural Geography in the School of Physical and Geographical Sciences at Keele University, UK. His primary research interests lie at the intersections between mobility, culture and security. Two books have been recently published from these interests: Mobility (2009) and Aerial Life: spaces, mobilities, affects (2010, in-press). He is currently leading a Leverhulme Trust grant into the regulation of mobility during the Second World War.