New spatio-political-economies of Asia

Chair: Prof. Anoma Pieris1
Presenters: Dr. Amanda Achmadi1, Dr. Sidh Sintusingha1, Karina Putri1, Jayde Roberts2 
Discussant: Prof. Jeff Hou3 

1 University of Melbourne, 2 University of New South Wales, 3 University of Washington

This roundtable discussion presents observations of the interplay between spatial practices and the transforming political and social landscapes in 21st century Asia. It considers how spatial practices – ranging from formations of mega-infrastructure development to emergences of community based-design activism – are unfolding and are being recast as Asia embraces its urban century. The rise of urban middle classes, fluid labour movements, increased mobility across the region, social media and e-commerce further complicate the unresolved tension between democratisation, identity formation and state politics. All these unravel through the contrasting social and urban landscapes of Asian cities. Productions of built urban spectacle driven by the neo-liberal dream of becoming ‘global’ are presented as the future while their operations remain dependent on the resilient practices of informal urbanism, whether of governance, housing or economy. The roundtable speculates implications of the contrasting scales of spatial practices and poses the question whether this will further reinforce or weaken synergistic-juxtapositions of socio-economic extremes, ubiquitous many Asian cities?

 

ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION

The Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) is the peak body of university experts and educators on Asia in Australia. Established in 1976, we promote and support the study of Asia in Australian universities and knowledge of Asia among the broader community. Our membership is drawn mainly from academics and students, but also includes industry and government Asia experts. We take a strong interest in promoting knowledge about Asia in schools and in contributing to state and Commonwealth government policies related to Asia. We provide informed comment on Asia to a broad public through our bulletin, Asian Currents, and specialist research articles in our journal, Asian Studies Review. Four book series published under our auspices cover Southeast Asia, South Asia, East Asia and Women in Asia.

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