Memory and the city

Assessing tools for interdisciplinary research and teaching (2016-2018)

The project aims to assess and experiment research tools for the study of the relationship between collective memory, urban space, and design in contemporary cities. It stems from previous empirical and collaborative experiences between PoliTo and EPFL in the study of urban collective memories. By scrutinizing the two cities of Le Locle and La Chaux-de-Fonds jointly inscribed on the UNESCO’s World Heritage list in 2009, the project aims to respond to the widely felt need to elaborate innovative research paths concerning the methodology and the goals of research on urban memory. Memory studies have gained an increasing presence in the research and teaching activities of European technical schools, in parallel with the growing role played by tangible and intangible heritage in processes of urban/architecturaltransformation. The project explores the ways in which memory studies can represent a challenge and opportunity for ‘Polytechnic’ research and education, forging links between different fields of knowledge such as architectural design, urban history, sociology and anthropology, visual studies, mapping.

Source of financing: Compagnia San Paolo and Politecnico di Torino

Research Team: Filippo De Pieri, Florence Graezer Bideau, Alessandro Armando, Yves Pedrazzini, Nicola Braghieri, Davide Vero, Lucia Bordone and Lesslie Herrera

Partner: Politecnico di Torino

Recent activities:

  • Joint fieldwork and seminars in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Le Locle, Lausanne and Turin

Book in preparation:

  • De Pieri Filippo et Florence Graezer Bideau, éds. (2018). Porter le Temps. Ville et mémoire dans un site UNESCO, Genève, MētisPresses.
  • De Pieri Filippo, Alessandro Armando and Florence Graezer Bideau, eds. (2018). Memory and the City: A Handbook in Action, Siracusa, LettereVentidue.