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Urban Life at the Extensions

The University of London Institute in Paris is delighted to welcome Professor Abdou Maliq Simone, who will be taking up the third iteration of the Banister Fletcher Global Fellowship, an opportunity for comparative and collective work in Urban Studies established with the support of the Banister Fletcher Trust and in collaboration with the Bartlett School of Architecture (UCL) and the School of History (QMUL). Professor Simone’s Fellowship Programme is entitled Urban Life at the Extensions. It will engage in collaborative work with the Beyond Inhabitation Lab and a number of frontline associations and networks in the Paris area to build a series of seminars and joint investigations.

Content Directory:

  • Introduction
  • Programme
  • Professor AbdouMaliq Simone

Urban Life at the Extensions: Introduction

Professor AbdouMaliq Simone's conceptual programme begins with the question incumbent in engagements with “the urban” as to who can act, who is endowed with the sensate capacities, why has agency and affect become the purview of only certain “actors” and not others, and thus a sense of urban power constructed on the basis of a limited assignation of agential performance? Why sustain a bifurcation among human, built, technical, and social domains, for are not these identifications themselves urbanized to assume a multiplicity of collective actions? How then to inhabit a pluriversal urban terrain?

It will engage the notion of ‘extension’ and ‘extensions’ in ways that themselves exceed the focus on extension beyond city form to suggest that going beyond can take place anywhere and is manifested not only in new territorial formations but also in ways of living and inhabiting.

Extensions draw attention to intensive entanglements across different locations, to different ways of living, different games of getting by, different logics and identities of what any given place might be. Extensions as augmentations of urban information processes, decision support systems, territorial management, surveillance and control, as well as the unforeseen ways in which urban spaces can offer inexplicable affordances. This is not only about seeking to overthrow the current system by suggesting new models or imposing utopian visions. It is about extending the possibilities for putting existing materials to new uses.

Urban Life at the Extensions: Programme

The programme will draw together five thematic working strands in an intensive 5-day series of ‘dialogues’ convened in Paris at the Institute and at the Station-Gare des Mines (Aubervilliers),  and led by scholars, activists and urbanists drawing from their respective domains and locations. Please view programme overview and details below. 

Dates: Monday 17 April-Friday 21 April 2023

Professor AbdouMaliq Simone

Professor Simone is Senior Professorial Fellow at The Urban Institute, University of Sheffield, co-director of the Beyond Inhabitation Lab of the Polytechnic University of Turin, and has held research positions at the Max Planck Institute, the African Centre for Cities at the University of Cape Town, the Rujak Centre for Urban Studies in Jakarta and at the University of Tarumanagara. He is also the author of many ground-breaking works, including most recently The Surrounds. Urban Life Within and Beyond Capture (2022). 

The range and processes that Professor Simone’s work has engaged and developed constitutes a fantastic basis from which to contribute to the Banister Fletcher Fellowship’s objectives of placing alternative forms and spaces of knowledge production at the heart of the work it aims to foster in relation to cultures and histories of the built environment across the world. And we look forward very much to working with Professor Simone to these ends.