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Accepted Paper:

Rethinking Public Participation in Planning in Amman, Jordan  
Jakleen Al-Dalal'a (The University of Sheffield)

Paper short abstract:

Understanding current processes (in this case the 'invited' and 'invented' spaces of participation both terms borrowed from Cornwall, 2002; Miraftab, 2004) which shape material realities of urban conditions in the global South can contribute to wider planning research and practice debates.

Paper long abstract:

Increasingly it is becoming clear that we are living in a global moment, in which the imagined future of most places in the world in both the global South and North is one of conflict. While we are collectively facing compounded and human-made crises of racial violence, climate change, pandemics, wars and new colonialities, this exposes the need to look carefully and critically beyond the capitalist regime to deep systematic transformations that recognise multiplicities and alternative futures, methods of knowing and ways of living and practising. This paper explores tropes of thoughts from local grassroots initiatives in Amman that envisage possibilities of living differently outside the world's modern dimension. Through exploring different spaces of 'invited' and 'invented' participation, this paper investigates the various ways in which grassroots and CBOs navigate and manipulate the state apparatus' rules and grids of organisation to create alternative modes of meaningful participation. Building on de Certeau's notion of tactics, I argue for looking at the everyday practices within the 'invented' spaces as 'tactics' used by the grassroots to subvert the order of things, a way that people use to engage with the neoliberal and authoritarian logics in Jordan to negotiate power within the authorities. Time in the field allowed me to critically look at the 'invented' spaces of participation as a salient sphere in which state power, political agency and creative tactics intersect, I contend looking at these practices outside a binary lens of legality/informality, state/society or 'invited'/'invented', where they are neither insurgents nor passive.

Panel P60
Grassroots tactics and solutions