Symposium - Ten Years Of Global Metropolitan Studies

Symposium photograph


Ten Years of Global Metropolitan Studies at Berkeley: A Symposium

April 3-4, 2017
Social Science Matrix
Barrows Hall, 8th Floor
UC Berkeley

Global Metropolitan Studies sprang to life during a decade of major transformations not only in cities around the world but also in how we study cities. The implications of global urbanization are widespread: from environmental challenges to entrenched patterns of segregation to new configurations of politics and social movements. UC Berkeley created GMS in 2004 as a New Initiative Center to promote multidisciplinary doctoral-level education and research on global urbanization. In 2009, the program became a Designated Emphasis, or Ph.D. minor. Since its inception, 61 doctoral students have enrolled in the Designated Emphasis and 34 have graduated. We celebrate these accomplishments in this two-day symposium where we bring together GMS alumni, current and former directors, affiliated faculty, and current students to discuss and debate what has emerged in the field and to anticipate new directions in the field. 

This symposium is free and open to the public. Please RSVP to let us know you will attend!

Photo by Jia-Ching Chen 

Schedule April 3

9:30 – 10:00 


10:00 – 10:30

Opening Remarks

Teresa Caldeira and Joan Walker, GMS Co-directors

10:30 – 12:30

Panel 1: Knowledge Production and the Re-imagining of Global Metropolitan Studies

Chair: Teresa Caldeira University of California, Berkeley; GMS-Co-director

Gautam Bhan Indian Institute for Human Settlements

What Must Be Our Urban Question? Reflections on Contemporary Urban Knowledge from Delhi

Ricardo Cardoso New York University

Atlantic Metropolitan Studies: Contemporary Lineaments of an Elapsed Field

Joseph Godlewski Syracuse University

Contending with Post-Truth Politics, Anti-Planning, and Occult Urbanism

Ryan Centner London School of Economics

The Spatial Politics of “The Middle” 

12:30 – 1:15 


1:15 – 3:00

Panel 2: Infrastructure and Critique – Part 1 

Chair: Peter Evans UC Berkeley Professor Emeritus; Former GMS Director

Hun Kim ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute

Infrastructures of Infrastructure in Ho Chi Minh City

Mona Damluji University of California, Santa Barbara

Cultural Infrastructures of Everyday Life

Julie Gamble Univerisdad San Francisco de Quito

Playing on the Urban Street: Gender, Risk, and Transit Infrastructure in Quito, Ecuador

3:00 – 3:15 


3:15 – 5:00

Panel 3: Infrastructure and Critique – Part 2

Chair: Elizabeth Deakin UC Berkeley Professor Emerita; Former GMS Director

Sergio Montero Universidad de Los Andes

Leveraging Bogotá: Sustainable Urban Development, Global Philanthropy and the Increased Speed of Urban Policy

Oscar Sosa Lopez University of California, Berkeley

Climate Adaptation, Green Infrastructure and Urban Citizenship: Insights from Mexico City

John Stehlin University of California, Berkeley

Vernacular Mobilities and the Biopolitics of Urban Data: The Formalization of Bicycle Infrastructure in North America


Ananya Roy University of California, Los Angeles; Former GMS Director


Schedule April 3

9:30 – 10:00



9:00 – 11:00

Panel 4: City Making, Urban Citizenship, and New Configurations of the Political

Chair: James Holston University of California, Berkeley; Former GMS Director

Jennifer Tucker University of New Mexico

Deal-making, Livelihood and Urban Rights

António Tomás African Centre for Cities, University of Cape Town

Local Political Dynamics as Counter-movements: Municipal Concerns and the Reconfiguration of the Political in Angola

Saima Akhtar Yale University

Waging Love: Water Rights and Urban Activism in Detroit

Sara Hinkley University of California, Berkeley

Workers of the City, Unite!


11:00 – 11:15



11:15 – 1:15 

Panel 5: Land Commodification, Urbanization, and New Forms of Uncertainty and Spectacle

Chair: Richard Walker UC Berkeley Professor Emeritus; Former GMS Director

Jia-Ching Chen University of California, Santa Barbara

Rural Revanchism?: State-led Spatial Restructuring, Land Commodification and Class Making in China

Alex Schafran University of Leeds

The Urban as an Economic Sector

Matt Wade University of California, Berkeley

Spectral Time, Archipelagic Utopias, and Planning in the Age of Climate Apocalypse

Kah-Wee Lee National University of Singapore

Casino Urbanisms: Networks of Profit and the Architectural Fix


1:15 – 2:00



2:00 – 3:30

Final Round Table Discussion: Future Trends in Global Metropolitan Studies

GMS Co-directors Past and Present; and All Participants

GMS Directors

  • Teresa Caldeira
  • Elizabeth Deakin
  • Peter Evans
  • James Holston
  • Ananya Roy
  • Joan Walker
  • Richard Walker


  • Saima Akhtar, Yale University
  • Gautam Bhan, Indian Institute for Human Settlements
  • Ricardo Cardoso - New York University
  • Ryan Center - London School of Economics
  • Jia-Chiang Chen - University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Mona Damluji - University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Julie Gamble - Univerisda San Francisco de Quito
  • Joseph Godlewski - Syracuse University
  • Sara Hinkley - UC Berkeley
  • Hun Kim - ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute
  • Kah-Wee Lee - National University of Singapore
  • Sergio Montero - Universidad de Los Andes
  • Alex Schafran - University of Leeds
  • Oscar Sosa Lopez - UC Berkeley
  • John Stehlin - UC Berkeley
  • Antonio Tomas - University of Cape Town
  • Jennifer Tucker - University of New Mexico
  • Matt Wade - UC Berkeley