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Public Space and Its Role for Segregation, Identity and Everyday Life: A Case Study of Östbergahöjden and Its Square
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This master’s thesis explores the role that public space plays for triggering and fostering segregation, as well as for posing challenges to people’s everyday life and identity. It is argued that the understanding of such processes is often limited due to underestimating the function of the physical environment and the way places are shaped and connected to each other. The potential for interaction and meetings between people from different areas, ages and social backgrounds is a crucial prerequisite for creating an integrated society and encouraging tolerance and a feeling of belonging. Therefore, this role of public space has to be strengthened through planning, especially in areas designed during the 1960s and 1970s in Stockholm, when such needs have not been prioritised. A particular example is Östbergahöjden, where physical isolation and the residents’ dissatisfaction with public space, especially the square, has led to a deteriorating public life. By combining the theoretical background with qualitative research methods, the paper aims to provide a better understanding on the underlying issues and possible solutions. Findings suggest that the role of public space is indeed crucial but making it work in the right direction is not a straightforward process and needs to be approached from various different angles.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 52 p.
National Category
Human Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-78446OAI: diva2:539699
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2012-08-17 Created: 2012-07-04 Last updated: 2012-08-17Bibliographically approved

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