AG Routines and Ruptures in Cultures and Cities (R2C2) | AG Routines and Ruptures in Cultures and Cities (R2C2) – Institut für Geographie
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AG Routines and Ruptures in Cultures and Cities (R2C2)

Members of the working group R2C2 are committed to the inter- and transdisciplinary – albeit sometimes normative – analysis of lifeworlds and livelihoods. These are challenged, contested, and constantly transforming in the context of social pressures, environmental and climate change, hazards and risks, often associated with contradicting perceptions and preferences, and unequal power relations.

We view culture as a multiplicity of fields of practice, embedded in social and environmental contexts that are often situational, and marked by an array of singularities. Our work is informed by theoretical and conceptual approaches including, but not confined to, theories of practice, political ecology, political economy, institutional economics, concepts of appropriation and belonging, or governance approaches.

Well, when we speak of routines, what we really mean are continuities. We found that “routines” just sounded cool, and the acronym R2C2 could give you all sorts of ideas – exactly what we aim at in our daily work. Most of us engage in Development Studies and in Urban Studies, often in the so-called Global South, but some of us would not subscribe to these terms. As a common denominator, however, we focus on urban development and ordering processes in cities, and on vulnerability patterns in risk and disaster contexts, mostly with a focus on (in)justice, severe ruptures in everyday life, and challenges and opportunities in adapting to, managing, or coping with, challenges and threats.

Apart from a large number of journal papers, major academic outputs in recent years include the editing of the IFRC World Disasters Report 2014 on Risk and Culture (F. Krüger together with T. Cannon, G. Bankoff, L. Schipper), a book on Cultures and Disasters (F. Krüger and B. Orlowski with T. Cannon, G. Bankoff and L. Schipper), and a book on Post-Apartheid Cities (C. Haferburg with M. Huchzermeyer), to name but a few.

Current research topics include

  • linkages between culture(s) and disasters, and DRR (see Cultures and Disasters)

  • the concept of “community” as a myth

  • urbanisation, justice, and urban green infrastructure

  • creative cities and the right to the city

Our research is closely linked to what we teach: we attempt to include our students in our projects as best as we can, in our M.A. programme in particular. In recent years, our students engaged in, e.g., field courses on livelihoods and environmental perception in the Okavango Delta (Botswana), on coastal livelihoods in Zanzibar, or on environmental hazards and disaster preparedness in high mountain environments. Together with their academic mentors, students participated in panels on Cultures and Disasters we organised for the AAG meeting in Chicago (2015) or the Anthropology, Weather and Climate Change conference in London (2016), or in field work on urban health issues or urban governance. And there is a lot more to come in the next years!

Research focus

Geographical Development Studies, Vulnerability, Risk and Disasters

Urban Studies

Current research projects

Members of our (open) work group:

Dr. Klaus Geiselhart, Dr. Jussi Grießinger, Dr. Christoph Haferburg, Tobias Häberer, M.A., Prof. Dr. Fred Krüger, Dipl.-Geogr. Fabian Schlatter, Dr. Alexandra Titz, Benedikt Orlowski, M.A., Annika Zeddel, M.A.