Past Present and Future of Public Space | Research Group

February 18, 2017
By City Space Architecture

Past Present and Future of Public Space is an Italian project, started in 2012 as an academic postdoctoral research activity by our President Luisa Bravo, at the Department of Architecture, University of Bologna (Italy) and currently coordinated and promoted by City Space Architecture. The project aims to explore new dimensions of public realm and to discuss results of research activities, through a multidisciplinary approach, on public space and related topics, comparing theories and projects with advisors and correspondents from different contexts.

First results were presented and discussed at the Biennale dello spazio pubblico on May 18, 2013 in Rome, during an international session promoted by City Space Architecture and coordinated by our President Luisa Bravo, and then published in a special issue of the open access e-journal "IN_BO. Ricerche e progetti per il territorio, la città e l'architettura", entitled The Public Space of Education, edited by Luisa Bravo and Claudio Sgarbi.
During the Roman session a call for proposals has been launched in order to invite scholars, architects, urban designers, planners, photographers and artists to join the project.
The research project was then discussed in Bologna, on 9 November 2013 during a symposium and exhibition at Quartiere San Vitale, Municipality of Bologna, promoted by City Space Architecture.


A large public event, a three-day international conference that took place in Bologna on 25-27 June 2014, was intended to be the final result of this research activity. More than 120 scholars, academic professors and professionals attended the conference, engaging also artists, suchs as photographers and film-makers.


After this overwhelming success, City Space Architecture worked to strenghten academic and professional collaborations worldwide, that led to the foundation of:
- the Past Present and Future of Public Space Research Group 
- a new academic, open access journal, The Journal of Public Space, in partnership with UN Habitat, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme. As a proper public space, The Journal of Public Space is free, accessible and inclusive, providing a platform for emerging and consolidated researchers; it is intended to foster research, showcase best practices and inform discussion about the more and more important issues related to public spaces in our changing and evolving societies.
Both the research group and the journal were launched during an international seminar in Venice, on 23 September 2016, in the frame of Biennale Sessions, a a special educational project of La Biennale di Venezia. Some pictures of our event in Venice are available on our Facebook page

A third 'Past Present and Future of Public Space' meeting will take place in Venice on 22-23 September 2018.


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'Past Present and Future of Public Space' Research Group, Bologna 2014