Unit A: EMUVE Unit Lewisham 2021: Inter-Cultural Nodes

Course Leader:

Dr. Federico Wulff Barreiro wulfff@cardiff.ac.uk

Course Tutor:
Dr. Federico Wulff Barreiro

During the last decade, our European cities are undergoing profound changes as a reaction to the
successive crises that our continent is facing, starting from the 2008 economic downturn and its urban and socio-economic impacts on deprivation, degradation, and abandonment. Then, other successive crises have been added on, such as present COVID-19 challenges, the current crisis of European identity and its associated values and the widespread fear of the otherness as reflected in Brexit process, and the refugee and migrant crisis from 2015 onwards. The European migrant and refugee crisis has been by far the most important displacement of people fleeing from warfare and deprivation that our European continent has experienced since Word War II, with more than 1 million refugees crossing the European Union since 2015.
The European urban public management models and planning methodologies have proven to be
excessively rigid and obsolete for addressing these complex and rapidly evolving crises from spatial and social perspectives.

The European research project EMUVE (Euro-Mediterranean Urban Voids Ecology), funded by the European Commission and hosted at the Welsh School of Architecture, has been conceived as a response to this concerning context at the architectural and urban scales. EMUVE has explored innovative design reactivation strategies for addressing the urban and social degradation processes resulting from these successive crises focusing on the Mediterranean as the hardest European frontier, the most conflicted and impactful area of the continent. A number of examples of this wider impact could be identified in North Europe, such as Calais' informal migrant camps in North France and the migrants and refugees' dangerous crossings of the British Channel for reaching the UK.
EMUVE European project has worked on several case studies in Spain (Andalucía region and Barcelona), France (Marseille) and Italy (Rome and Palermo) with precedents in the UK, in London (Hackney Wick in London) and Cardiff (Cardiff Bay).
MA AD – EMUVE Unit has been officially approved by the European Commission in 2014 as the design research laboratory of EMUVE European research project.
During 2020-2021, EMUVE Unit will be working in Lewisham, one of the most intercultural boroughs of London that forms part of the Intercultural Cities network of the Council of Europe. We will work within the logic of a design research think tank in collaboration with Lewisham borough and local stakeholders.

Lewisham is one of the 33 boroughs of London, located in the south-east of the city, with a population of 264,500. The borough has a short section of the south bank of the Thames, with the greatest concentrations of ethnic minority residents around Deptford, New Cross and Lewisham Central, and it has long been one of the most impoverished parts of the capital. The traditional white population is long gone to the outer suburbs and if any ethnic group can now be considered to be indigenous to Lewisham it is probably the black Caribbean population.
Currently, Lewisham is probably the only local authority in the UK which has been pursuing an explicitly intercultural approach, and it has been doing this for several years prior to its inclusion into the Inter-Cultural Cities network of the Council of Europe in 2007.
More recently, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that Lewisham has been awarded the title of London Borough of Culture for 2021. London Mayor’s award has given an explicit political support to the Lewisham borough's Intercultural agenda.

EMUVE Lewisham 2021 Unit will explore multi-scalar intercultural dynamics in Lewisham, focusing both on the redesign of public spaces aimed for intercultural interaction and the reactivation of derelict and underused buildings that could become spaces for social exchange. We will develop a multi-scalar conception, development, and implementation of a network of Inter-Cultural Nodes (ICN).

As Bhabha (1994) and Bloomfield (2007) argue, an Inter-Cultural Node (ICN) Could be identified as a ‘third space’, a pluralist space which is in-between that develops a relational practice at multiple scales (urban, public space, architectural), where the participants, including locals and all kinds of
culturally diverse migrants that have been frequently subjected to exclusion, could collaborate together on joint projects within shared openness, cultural recognition, equality, anti-discrimination, dialogue and sharing of knowledge.


Creekside Intercultural Centre

Reflections on the translation of architectural spaces for equal interaction in contemporary multicultural areas

Lanting Yang

View Project

Intercultural Node Research Design

The analysis starts from both social and urban directions as a way of ICN to create an intercultural communication space covering all immigrant groups. Regardless of gender, age or ethnicity.

hang liu

View Project

Apply creative industrial architecture activate the in-between spaces of industrial sites in Deptford

This research project is under the European Funded research project EMUVE (Euro Mediterranean Urban Voids Ecology),which is focuses on the existing voids produced by current shrinking cities at the Euro‐Mediterranean

Sidong LI

View Project

featured image

Gender, Identities, Space

Design Research of Intercultural Node In Deptford 2021

Tianye Chen

View Project

Research on Learning Space for Intercultural Interactions

Research on interculturality: Tidemill co-managed learning space

Siyan Tao

View Project

Intercultural Node Expansion in Deptford

Based on the development of intercultural nodes in the previous stage

Shuoyuan Li

View Project

Regenerate urban memory by establishing intercultural nodes

Regenerate urban memory by establishing intercultural nodes

Miaocai Jia

View Project

Albany (London)community expansion space

How to use architectural design language and programming in Deptford to promote cross-cultural communication, interaction, and cooperation among immigrants, refugees, and locals.

kaiwen chen

View Project