proximities

Proximities

6-7 December 2007

This workshop continues the discussions in the previous workshops on ideas of security and design, focusing on ways danger is experienced as close or distant.

How are concepts of proximity redefined in terms of changing conceptions of security?

  • Proximity can be seen as spatial (here and there), scalar (the small and the large), haptic (touching and out of touch), relational (as in a network), and/or conjunctive (the bringing together of previously or apparently unrelated entities).
  • Security can be seen in terms of everyday practices and networks, management of risk, governance of preparedness, maintenance of stable systems, boundary work, face-work, and/or resilience under stress.

Current discussions reconceive danger, responses to danger, and planning for security in terms of new understandings of space, relationships, and practice. They also use case studies of danger and security to challenge previously taken-for-granted ideas of what is dangerously close and what is safely distant. The workshop brings together researchers from a range of social science disciplines who are considering such issues as urban infrastructures of water and power, practices of prisoners maintaining their spaces in confinement, the changed sense of geography during the foot and mouth epidemic, and the ways teenagers get to school.

13:00-13:45 Registration and coffee
13:45 Welcome and Introduction
Greg Myers (Linguistics and English Language, Lancaster University)
14:00 – 15:30 Simon Marvin and Mike Hodson (Centre for Sustainable Urban and Regional Futures (SURF), Salford University) ‘Secure Urbanism and Resilient Infrastructure’Will Medd (Geography, Lancaster University)
15:30 Two projects from Design Interactions, Royal College of Art: Michael Burton ‘The Race’ and Jessica Charlesworth ‘Nanonoia’
16:15 16:30 Tea
16:30-18:00 Duncan Whyatt and Marion Walker (Geography, Lancaster University) ‘The School Journey: Visible and Invisible Dangers’Anita Wilson (Literacy Research Centre, Lancaster University) ‘Happiness is Door-Shaped: Issues of Control and Safety in Prison’

Friday, December 7

Time Event
9:30 – 11:00 Maggie Mort (Institute for Health Research, Lancaster University) ‘Foot and Mouth Disease Lifescapes’

Anne-Marie Fortier
(Sociology, Lancaster University) ‘Multicultural Intimacies and the Politics of Interethnic Propinquity’
11:00 – 11:30 Coffee
11:30 – 13:00 Mark Levine and John Dixon (Psychology, Lancaster University) ‘Locating Social Responsibility: CCTV surveillance and public space’Amanda Newall and Ola Johansson (LICA, Lancaster)
‘(Mis)Tanzania: Security, Site, Performance’
13:30- 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:30 Brian Bloomfield (Organisation, Work and Technology, Lancasyter University) ‘Dead But Not Forgotten: The Secret of Yucca Mountain’David Sibley (Geography, University of Leeds) ‘Distance, anxiety and built form’
15:30 – 16:00 Closing discussion, main themes, and further questions
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