From September 21 to 26, 2022, twelve students will join the workshop on the pasts and futures of public spaces, which is organized in Koper/Capodistria, Slovenia, under the aegis of the UNESCO Chair for Interpretation and Education for promoting Integrated Heritage Approaches (University of Primorska) and within the research projects Urban Futures: Imagining and Activating Possibilities in Unsettled Times (ARSS and HRZZ) and The Potential of Ethnographic Methods in the Conservation of Built Heritage in Contested Sites: The Case of Northern Istria (ARRS).
The workshop’s aim is to introduce a specific set of ethnographic methods (TESS, REAP) for exploring the values and meanings of public space. The methods have been developed by Prof. Dr. Setha Low who will act as supervisor and discussant of students’ practical work. Master and Ph.D. students in anthropology and ethnology, conservation, history, and geography will carry out the case-study research of “Giardinetto”, a site in the heart of the historic city of Koper/Capodistria (Slovenia), which is permeated by various historical uses, cultural practices, meanings, and contestations while currently awaiting a thorough renewal. In the workshop, central attention will be placed on the specificities of historic urban spaces, particularly their contested nature (ethnicity, class, gender, economic activities, usage, etc.), and discussing possible futures. The research will connect several academic fields, namely urban anthropology, anthropology of space and place, anthropology of futures, and critical heritage studies.