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Summer School 2023 - Digital Cities


Rainer Danielzyk
Organisational Assistant
Lena Greinke
Coordinator HQ
Lena Greinke

The ARL – Academy for Territorial Development in the Leibniz Association in cooperation with the Department of Geography and Spatial Planning at the University of Luxembourg are organizing the ARL International Summer School 2023.

The topic of the summer school is 'A CONTESTED RELATIONSHIP? Urbanisation & the Digital, vs. Digitalisation & the Urban'.

When? 06-08 July 2023
Where? University of Luxembourg, Campus Belval

Over the course of three to four days, a small group of doctoral students work intensively with renowned academic experts on a current topic.

The Issue

This year, the Summer School is situated within recent debates and developments about what was initially called ‘smart cities’. Judging from our observations, related urban policy frames have reached another level of sophistication, after having undergone uncritical praise and popular tech-hype by the 2010s (in what could be understood as a Phase 1), and the more recent practice of policy formulation, implementation and aiming for local impact (which could be considered a Phase 2). We are now looking forward to discussing subsequent events and outcomes in the complex, often contested relationship between urbanisation and the digital, and digitalisation and the urban, respectively. These developments include the more subtle forms of how digital means and processes have become entrenched in urban practices, collective and individual. They comprise issues of surveillance and control (for example in urban domains, or at the workplace); components of infrastructure that provide the backbone of related systems (such as data centres); just-city frames that have risen in response to perceived digital divides in societies; or systems of provision in retail and services that tend to become hegemonic, if not totalitarian (such as Amazon.com). Various forms of governance are also involved here, not only at municipal levels, but also fostered by national and metropolitan governments, for example in strategies of smart specialization.

The programme

This year, we are delighted to welcome four distinguished experts who will contribute with keynote lectures, and tutoring to the Summer School programme:

  • Prof Andrew Karvonen, Lund University, Sweden
  • Prof Rob Kitchin, Maynooth University, Ireland
  • Priv.-Doz. Dr Bastian Lange, multiplicities, Berlin/University of Leipzig, Germany
  • Dr Julia Rone, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

In addition, contributions from 12 doctoral students are foreseen which have been selected through a competitive process internationally and across a range of disciplines, such as geography, planning, urban studies and other social sciences and humanities.

Contact: Constance CarrMarkus Hesse


Summer School in Luxembourg



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