Place and Displacement – Towards Building and Sustaining Just Communities

The URBAN 2018 Conference will convene university scholars, community organizers, educators, activists and artists to connect, share stories, and develop practices and strategies for supporting communities in rapidly-changing cities and outlying areas across the US. Disruptions such as school closures, immigration enforcement, mass incarceration, gentrification, and environmental racism are cumulatively displacing low-income communities and communities of Color. The overlapping nature of these issues call for intersectional approaches that draw upon the expertise of youth and community organizers, educators, and university researchers working in equitable partnerships, consistent with the tradition of community-based participatory research.

The Conference brings together members of URBAN from across the country to discuss their efforts to build and sustain research partnerships that address these issues. The Conference will take place from May 17-19, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Critical Participatory Action Research Pre-Conference on Thursday, May 17).

For more information about this year’s Conference, please contact Vanessa Roberts, Conference Coordinator (vanessa.roberts@colorado.edu).

Registration: Please make sure to register for the conference by April 15th: https://edu.z2systems.com/np/clients/edu/eventRegistration.jsp?event=2623&

Travel & Lodging: The Denver International Airport is the closest airport and boasts numerous ground transportation options. Please refer to the  URBAN Conference 2018_Lodging Options document for more information on the hotel discounts we have secured and recommended neighborhoods for those who might prefer room-share or alternative accommodations.

Conference Program: URBAN conference draft agenda – 4/27/18


In an increasingly unstable and precarious world in which systems of government have yielded to systems of neoliberal governance– without stable jobs, stable climates, stable borders, or clear lines between public and private sectors– it behooves us to reassert our “the right to research” and perhaps go further. We hope, then, to examine radical possibilities, and speculate on what else might be possible, to contest today’s dominant social imaginaries. Activists themselves, alongside scholars, have made urgent calls for critical research that helps laborers, undocumented immigrants, indebted students, and others to revamp campaigns that have traditionally targeted governmental policies— but must now tackle a complex web of decentralized private-public partnerships, multinational corporations, in solidarity with those who are geographically far, but fighting the same struggles. Both activists and scholars have also made repeated calls for access to and ownership of data, to make sure that those who are talked about have the skills and means to talk back, to watch the watchers and to interpret the research themselves.

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