Concha Roldán

A new political imagination: creating realistic utopias

Andrés Lomeña | Patricio CabelloWe live in troubled times. We are witnessing how the climate crisis threatens life and jeopardizes the sustainability of the political and economic models in which we have operated for the last hundred years. There are great masses of refugees moving around the world to escape from war and famine, only to encounter fences, walls and ditches. Combined with the devastating impacts of the pandemic, the panorama resembles the end times, which summons and challenges...

Historical notes in a reflection on tolerance for a new political imaginary

Concha RoldánWe are used to talk of “tolerance,” or of “tolerant,” or “intolerant” attitudes, “intolerable” situations in socio-political and religious debates, in the media, and on social networks. But what do we want to say or mean when we talk about “tolerance”? What does it mean to be “tolerant”? What is the origin of this concept, and why has it become so relevant at this moment in history? If we survey all of those around us, we will receive a majority and perhaps even unanimous vote in...

Towards a new social contract for the 21st century

Towards a New Social Contract for the 21st Century_Maysoun DouasWe find ourselves going around in a loop. Our social model is giving out quickly as we exhaust the natural resources of our environment. What we used to call the endless cycle now has an expiration date. In configuring modern societies, democracy, industrialization, human rights, states, borders and so many other innovations that may manifest in an isolated manner, some converging at certain moments, but mostly they take their...

Pandemics Occasion the Rethinking of Shared Technology

Jo GuldiIn the Fall of 2020, when groping cautions filled newspapers and universities announced hasty measures to take their history seminars online, I spent a hurried week re-writing my syllabi on British empire to investigate the history of disease. Across the British empire, among the most fearsome epidemics were the plagues of malaria and cholera. Both have moral lessons to teach present-day readers about the shape of disease. Part of what they can tell us about is the importance of shared...

A Modern Debt Jubilee

Steve KeenOur global culture prioritizes individualist values, at the expense of a civilized, healthy society and planet, with vested interests and neoclassical economists exacerbating the situation. Societies with advanced levels of industrialization and knowledge still ignore proposals to ensure shared prosperity such as the Universal Basic Income. That means the refusal to assure someone to survive in society and enable more innovation to take place, while still allowing those whose...

The post-pandemic city: transnational cooperation and public policy (Part II)

Colleen Boland | Rafael HeiberDec, 2020*The second number of the inaugural volume of metapolis further explores the titular theme «The post-pandemic city: transnational cooperation and public policy» in light of almost a year of experience. Communities have confronted not only the public health and economic impacts of the global crisis, but also a dramatic social reckoning precipitated by increasing inequalities, made poignantly visible via the effects and measures surrounding the pandemic....

Roaming noise and other unwanted sounds. Protecting the public domain

Joost SmiersIt is a majestic sight. Very low, above the centuries-old center of Amsterdam, immense large planes descend towards Schiphol Airport. This spectacle is accompanied by sound. Strangely enough, that hardly bothers me, probably because it is not so hard as it is closer to Schiphol. That seems strange because there are many types of sound, including soft ones, that I cannot handle. I know people in my area who are crazy about it. However, it could be worse. At the wrong time in the...

A new, «glocal» social pact for recovery

Rebeca GrynspanDec, 2020*As the year 2021 begins, the crisis carries on. We continue to analyze the multiple consequences of a pandemic that has put our societies in check and exposed systemic vulnerabilities. Everyone was of course conscious of the many short-term challenges faced by countries throughout the world, especially developing countries. In the wake of the greatest recession in centuries, we have experienced profound setbacks resulting in poverty, inequality, and increasing school...

Science and democracy: institutions in search of a sociopolitical identity

Jesús Rey Rocha | Emilio Muñoz RuizIt is frequently either implicitly or explicitly implied that science and democracy go hand in hand, that both are based on and uphold critical thinking, yet in science there are no dogmas or absolute truths. In fact, science and technology do not always go hand in hand with, or remain rooted in, free and critical thinking in the democratic sense. One can theorize about the origin of the universe, discover and manufacture a vaccine, or implement the...

Old challenges in a new context: the pandemic accelerating city multilateralism

Old challenges in a new context: the pandemic accelerating city multilateralism

Felipe Llamas [1][1]I would like to thank Eugene Zapata-Garesché, Managing Director for Latin America at 100 Resilient Cities (100RC); Agustí Fernández de Losada, Director of the Global Cities program at the Barcelona Centre for International Affairs (CIDOB); and Rodrigo Perpetuo, Executive Secretary of ICLEI South America, for their contributions. They are founding members of PHARE Global Territories. This article expands on the authors' thesis published in America Quarterly «How Mayors Are...