Online: Future Inquiry

The last in a series of interdisciplinary workshops asking how the built environment shapes our capacity to exercise autonomy in cities.

About this event

Join us at the last in a series of four interdisciplinary workshops questioning how the spatial, temporal and psychological ordering of space in the built environment shapes people‚Äôs capacity to exercise their autonomy within our cities. We'll be exploring depth and autonomy at a city scale, by investigating how depth structures might function at multiple levels, and how it might be put to work in the planning of our cities and policy that defines this.

Through informal presentations of research at the workshops, we will explore the nature of spatial order, and the relationship between people and their environments from a range of interdisciplinary perspectives. We aim to establish common ground; understand the nature and breadth of existing research into spatial ordering; define shared concepts and to begin to explore conceptual and normative issues around architecture and urban design.


Ben Colburn is Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, where he has worked since 2010. He was Head of Philosophy from 2017 to 2020. His main research interests are in political philosophy and ethics, with a particular interest in the nature and value of autonomy and its importance in liberal political philosophy. Ben has a further interest in exploring how foundational philosophical ideas (like autonomy and responsibility) can be put to use in policy and practice.

Katy Wells is an Assistant Professor in Political Theory at the Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick. She completed her DPhil titled Property and Rawlsian Justice in 2016 at Nuffield College, University of Oxford. Her current research focuses on housing, conceptual and normative questions to do with property, and on power.

Diana Stirbu is Professor of Public Policy and Governance at London Metropolitan University. She leads a number of research projects and initiatives in the School of Social Professions, including the Greater London Authority-GLA commissioned Social Integration and Regeneration Learning Network, bringing together urban regeneration and social integration professionals, experts and academics with the aim to share and develop learning across London boroughs.

Mathieu Proctor is Team Leader Growth Strategies and Urban Design within the Greater London Authority (GLA) Planning where he leads a team of architects/planners who implement the Mayor of London's Good Growth objectives through urban design advice on development of strategic importance, producing Opportunity Area Planning Frameworks (OAPFs) that unlock new homes and jobs through strategic urban design, and design support to the London Plan and associated guidance.

A poster announcing the event with a faded white line drawing of a city map on yellow background


Date/time Thursday 25 February 2021, from 3pm to 5pm GMT
Book ticket Future Inquiry
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