Enhancing Urban Encounters: The Transformative Powers of Creative Integration Initiatives

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-7635

Article | Open Access

Enhancing Urban Encounters: The Transformative Powers of Creative Integration Initiatives


  • Anniken Førde Department of Social Sciences, UiT, The Arctic University of Norway, Norway


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Abstract:  Sustainable cites require the capacity to live with difference. In a world of increased mobility and migration, our cities become more and more diversified. While national discourses on diversity are often problem-focused, social initiatives are emerging in diverse cities addressing the positive potential of the city as a cross-cultural meeting place. In Norway, such initiatives have increased in number since “the refugee crisis” in 2015, and we see creative approaches arising from civil society, the voluntary sector, private companies, and local governments aiming to facilitate encounters with difference. This article explores innovative integration initiatives in cities in the north, emphasizing how difference might be negotiated, engendering new forms of engagement and responsibility. Cities are seen as sites of experiments, where new relations across difference are developed. Framing encounters as emergent, transitory, fragile, yet hopeful, we discuss the transformative powers of such initiatives for planning in diverse cities.

Keywords:  collective learning; cross-cultural dialogues; encounter; Forum Theatre; integration; planning diversity; social initiatives; social innovation; situational understanding

Published:   24 January 2019


DOI: https://doi.org/10.17645/up.v4i1.1713


© Anniken Førde. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.