AG Creative Processes in Spatial Research and Spatial Planning

Creative Processes in Spatial Research and Spatial Planning

AG 280.033 by Dr. cand. Knierbein, Prof. DI Scheuvens, Prof. Dr. Dangschat, DI Krebs

Work group, 2009S, 2 hrs (Special Course) 
Course language: German

Downloads: VO 280.033 (M11)


Comment: Dialogue

Aim of the Course

This workshop format course, which is offered in conjunction with IFOER, ISRA and external assistant lecturers under the auspices of the newly founded Interdisciplinary Centre for Urban Culture and Public Space (SKuOR), deals with experimental approaches in spatial research and spatial planning. In the context of three-day modules it aims to complement the lectures delivered by the City of Vienna Visiting Professors. An open format shall facilitate explorative approaches in qualitative social research as well as the use of contemporary media, such as professional films addressing spatial planning and spatial research issues. In addition, theoretical and methodological references in urban sociology as well as practical examples drawn from spatial planning, offer an opportunity to embed the new content related to urban culture and public space in established fields of study and their academic curricula, thus facilitating orientation for students.

Students from different disciplines are expected to demonstrate a certain openness and willingness to actively participate in the cross-sectional dialogue-oriented programme that is offered in English and in German. Erasmus students are cordially invited to join the programme.

Content of the Course

Cultural practices and creativity have become core research interfaces in post fordist urban development and planners try to understand the potentials which are engendered by such practices (informal approaches, guerrilla gardening or cultural camouflage). Through observing such changes, planners and architects attempt to determine new courses and to redefine their own position in space production processes. But how exactly can such creative practices be translated into action, and how can they be developed on the basis of such action? Questions like these are not merely aimed at determining the appropriate use of planning instruments or emphasising their new diversity, but rather the illumination of the interface between creative, innovative approaches of spatial research and spatial planning. In this process social interactions, which ‘produce’ the city and engender the development of its materiality, are understood as a unit and not as something that can be separated one from another. So, what type of creative approaches can be identified? What are the motivations that drive planners and architects to critically examine their practices? And finally, how can empirical results generated by qualitative social research be translated into altered planning perspectives? SKuOR deals with this set of questions in order to emphasise that changes in perception as regards spatial planning and research pave the way for new methodologies as to how to approach space. Furthermore, they make it possible to generate knowledge as to how spaces function as creative, social processes. Conversely, contemporary approaches – e.g. the professional use of film as media – make it possible to train students as to how spatial development may be understood in terms of planning and design in accordance with contemporary methodology. The ultimate task is to point out creative ways in which planners and architects can act in order to influence social development through their spatial manifestations.


It is urgently recommended that participants attend course 268.022 “Media and Visual Communication” in Module 9 to acquire basic knowledge as regards the implementation of media.