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Dialogues in Development: About Time

17:30 - 19:00 21 November 2013

Location: Room 101, DPU

About Time

Presenter: Dr Peter Kellet

Topic background: All of us engaged in the field of urban change and development – as researchers, postgraduate students or practitioners – are constrained by time. At the same time, we recognise the temporal dimension as a key component in our work. The increasing scale and complexity of urban areas demands tools and approaches which can engage effectively with the unpredictable dynamics of social, economic and physical change. How might we use time more effectively? Are there opportunities to incorporate the time dimension more creatively into our work and studies? I will discuss some of my own work, particularly the use of longitudinal studies to document and analyse low-income settlement consolidation and change at household, community and city level. I will touch on how we might explore longer term engagements with communities and institutions through programmes which aim to build progressive international links and collaborations.

Biography: Peter Kellett is a Senior Lecturer in the Global Urban Research Unit at Newcastle University. He studied architecture and social anthropology and his PhD combined both disciplines in a longitudinal ethnographic study of self-made environments and social practices in Latin America. His research continues to focus on the interrelationship between social, material and spatial practices in contexts of disadvantage and vulnerability. He has worked on international research projects into informal settlements and poverty alleviation, and has published extensively, particularly on housing issues. His latest books include Rethinking the Informal City: Critical Perspectives from Latin America (Berghahn, 2010) and Researching the Contemporary City: Identity, Environment and Social Inclusion in Developing Areas (Editorial Javeriana, 2013). He has recently returned from an 8 month VSO volunteer placement in Ethiopia, where he was a Visiting Professor of Housing at Addis Ababa University.