Research groups

Urban Transformation and Global Change Laboratory
Urban Transformation and Global Change Laboratory (TURBA Lab)

We are a collective of researchers from different backgrounds in social sciences, environmental studies, humanities and architecture and planning. Departing from intersection between the urban and digital technologies we investigate the intertwined of social, economic, cultural, political, technological and environmental processes, metabolisms, actions and flows that produce and transform the world we live in. We do it by analysing the multifaceted composition of socio‐environmental and technological transformations from a conceptually critical approach that can consistently integrate economic, political and ecological dimensions on the one hand, and their geographical complexity on the other.

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Research lines

TURBA explores the geographies of digital capitalism and bottom-up alternatives. We focus in three research areas:

·  Urbanization processes: We explore the urbanization of digital capitalism, that is the political economy of contemporary processes of urban restructuring lead by the multi-scalar transformation of digital economies and societies. We pay special attention to new technologically mediated urban models, and contrasting top‐down models (e.g. Smart City, innovation districts) with bottom‐up and grassroots initiatives (e.g. p2p).

·  Socio-environmental flows: We explore the processes of reconfiguration of environmental governance and social‐ecological resilience against the backdrop of technological and social change, with special emphasis on water and food. We are interested in understanding the drivers, impacts, barriers and avenues, as well as the winners and losers, of processes of socio‐environmental transformation led by private capital and/or the public administration as well as by grassroots and bottom‐up initiatives.

·  Co-creation: We examine the processes of collaborative creation of knowledge in digital as well as non‐digital environments for a myriad of purposes related to urban transformation, and with a focus on social innovation. We analyse science education practices at schools, community-based initiatives in informal contexts and citizens’ participation in formal decision‐making processes to provide critical insights into the political, ecological, social and cultural dimensions of knowledge transmission, learning and co‐production.

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Open projects
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