Research sites

Astoria, New York
Jurong, Singapore
Hillbrow, Joburg

Drawn from an array of possible contexts, the sites for comparison in the GLOBALDIVERCITIES project have been specifically chosen for a number of reasons. Processes of diversification and the layering of ‘old’ and ‘new’ diversities are understudied. Therefore, the choice of cities - New York, Singapore, and Johannesburg - has been made according to ‘diverse case’ selection strategy in order to take account of multiple variables leading to typological theorizing. Here, variables refer to possible modes, constraints and opportunities of diversity encounter. The selection thus reflects the differentiated historical and political-economic circumstances behind the changing patterns and politics of diversity in cities and neighbourhoods, with discrete conditions shaping trajectories, layers of diversity and the social relations deriving from them. It is proposed that looking at diversification in key global cities will take on an increasing relevance as more and more cities come to resemble them in important ways, especially in terms of increasing economic, demographic and cultural flows. In each case city, the choice of neighbourhoods has been made with attention to contexts in which new super-diversity is evident, where no single group dominates, and where (physical/spatial, visual and social) manifestations of old and new diversities can be seen to meet. The public spaces within each are expected to offer common sites for fleeting and more sustained encounters embodying processes of stress alongside processes manifesting the construction of new, common and productive modes of interaction.