On CLUSTER’s “Creative Cities” conference in Cairo

Chaos is found in greatest abundance wherever order is being sought. It always defeats order, because it is better organized.” – Terry Pratchett, Interesting Times.

In the Creative Cities: Re-framing Downtown conference at the American University in Cairo (for which Cairobserver was a media sponsor), Cairo Lab for Urban Studies, Training and Environmental Research (CLUSTER) attempted to “emphasize comparative and interdisciplinary approaches to issues related to public space, heritage and urban culture, the revitalization of downtown in the context of gentrification and securitization, and urban governance.” As the current government recognizes, announcing a large-scale bricks-and-mortar planning vision for a place like downtown Cairo is far easier (and probably more lucrative) than grappling with the multiple realities, economies, histories and activities that actually go on there. CLUSTER, however, undertook to herd these cats in a conference that recognized that the very contradictions of downtown are the root of its possibilities.

Read more at Cairobserver


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