The Urban Village

A Charter for Democracy and Local Self-Sustainable Development

Alberto Magnaghi

The Urban Village

Alberto Magnaghi

Distributed for Zed Books

240 pages | 5.4375 x 8.5 | © 2005
Paper $44.95 ISBN: 9781842775813 Published October 2005 For sale in North and South America only
When first published in Italy, this book sold out in months. It stirred much media interest and was widely welcomed across the political spectrum and in scholarly circles. Now available in English in an updated version, The Urban Village introduces the concept of self-sustainable local development based on each locality's territorial specificities and traditions. After exploring the significance of local development in all its political, social and technical dimensions, Professor Magnaghi sets out a concrete vision for a new urban regional 'utopia'. He proposes, in addition to conventional indices of wealth and income, other criteria of social progress - including quality of life, social solidarity, and the development of non-commercial caring relations. Only when local communities value their local heritages, he argues, and build themselves on a basis of local economic self-government, will they be able to resist the colonization and marginalization that globalization so often inflicts on them.

At a time when the idea of the local, the demand for genuine decentralization capable of building effective community-level self-governing institutions, innovative democratic experiments, and ecological sustainability are all attracting more public interest, Alberto Magnaghi's blend of theoretical thinking and practical proposals is likely to prove a source of inspiration for politicians, planners and citizens wrestling with the challenge of building urban and rural communities.

Alberto Magnaghi is Professor of Land Use Planning at the University of Florence and leader of a nationwide research project to explore the importance of Italy's local heritage for endogenous development in the country's various regions. Besides many academic publications, he is the author of The Charter for a New Municipium that was presented at the World Social Forum in Porto Alegre in 2002.
Contents
Foreword
Preface by Edward Goldsmith
Introduction
 
Part 1: The territorialist approach: towards local self-sustainable development
1. The metropolis form and deterritorialization
2. Beyond the metropolis form
3. The territory is not a beast of burden
4. The territorialist approach
5. Local self-sustainable development
6. The agents of change
7. The status of places

Part 2: Visions of a strategic scenario
Premise
8. Concrete utopia and strategic scenarios
9. Projects for open spaces: the landscape of the new farmers
10. Cities of the village, cities of cities, networks of cities
11. The New Municipium
12. Towards the construction of the urban village: from the hypermarket to marketing networks for local products
13. Local projects and the South of the world: from co-operation to the development of fair trade
14. The local project: summing up a political vision
 
References
Index
 
 
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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