Urban Action School (UAS) 2017
Advanced Course for Urban Policy Practitioners
29th July to 5th August 2017
Tezpur University, Assam
Department of Sociology, Tezpur University & Knowledge Activist Hub Urban Poverty, ActionAid India.
This is a call for applications for the UAS short course on ‘Our Urban Futures’. Designed as an advanced course covering several critical areas of urban development paradigm. This course is essentially a mid career training for mid and senior level activists policy advocates, lawyers, journalists, researchers, and all categories of policy practitioners in this space.
The UAS is intended for the benefit of action researchers and social activists, with the objective of building the knowledge base of the participants and to complement action research and field based activism. The course is meant as a space for practitioners to upgrade their knowledge, to provide a space for reflection, for sharing and for acquiring new and useful skills, which in turn helps the participant to do better in her/his work. It is meant to make a difference to the person as well as to the organization/movement/company in which she/he works
Who can apply
Social workers, political activists, people working with community organizations, social movements, trade unions, lawyers, journalists, researchers, urban local bodies, media persons, government officials, research students, elected peoples’ representatives working on issues and concerns pertaining to development are eligible to apply for this course. Experienced professionals are preferred, with a minimum of five years of experience. The language will be mainly English. Applicants who are not comfortable in English can indicate their preference so that we can try and provide interpretation.
How will it be useful
The Urban Action School will bring together activists/ practitioners working on a range of issues relating to urban poverty, exclusion, livelihood, and urbanization from a wide range of disciplines. The UAS hopes to establish, over time, communities of practice and activist knowledge in various disciplines by creating a forum for cross-sectoral learning. The UAS also facilitate cross-pollination of ideas and experiences between different activists/ practitioners. It will provide an opportunity for a critical take-aways based on this year’s focus area i.e Urban Futures. A “Certificate of Participation” will be awarded to all participants upon completion of the course by co-organisers UAS, ActionAid Association and Tezpur University.
Each year the course curriculum is redesigned to reflect current and relevant ideas, issues, and concerns. The intention is to make the course a credible and significant contribution to understanding of cities, citizens, development models and people-oriented sustainable planning with an attempt to find solutions to growing urban poverty, migration, alienation, exclusion, violence, and lack of regulation and planning.
This short course will focus on “Urban Futures” which will attempt to build a holistic perspective by looking at the macro aspects of the global scenario and connecting the impact on the country. There will be a focus on the North East region of the country. Several significant transitions are taking place in the region; for example the impact of the big infrastructure projects have commenced which are raising concerns in terms of its possible impact on the environment and people’s lives. The course will discuss the concepts involved in imagining and implementing a genuinely sustainable, equitable and inclusive development that means a better life for the huge and growing urban poor and working people of the country. Aspects of patriarchy, gender issues and woman’s movement will be discussed. The course will also look at migration, labor issues and primarily the informal sector where the question of minimum wages, social protection etc. will be deliberated upon. In all, the course will examine alternative development models and solutions and try to identify means to achieve a decent and dignified life for people.
The following themes will be discussed in the course.
The course will employ multiple methods of teaching over and above the regular classroom pedagogy. Methods such as group discussions, multimedia, video conferencing etc. will be used. The course will be primarily undertaken in the English medium.
Academics, subject experts and practioners from across the globe are participating to create an enriched exposure concerning urban issues. Some resource persons will take the class online via video uplink. Detailed course content will be sent to the selected participants later. Some of the key resource persons are:
The host organizations will constitute a group of panelists to go through the applications and choose 25 participants. Selection will be broadly based on representation from different regions and sectors of practice. Care will be taken to see that there is adequate diversity, based on caste, gender and minorities. The decision of the selection committee will be final.
The course and the accommodation are arranged at Tezpur University. Accommodation will be on twin sharing basis. Simple food will be provided. Boarding and lodging as well as course materials will be taken care of by the host organizations, as also overhead costs pertaining to the course related activities such as field visits, stationery, reading materials etc. Participants are expected to take care of their travel from their respective locations to and from the venue. We will offer travel support to a few of those working in grassroots organizations. The organizers will decide on the applications for travel support based on set criteria based on finance and geography. Their decision will be final.
Main organizers: Citizens Rights Collective (CiRiC) an initiative of the Knowledge Activist Hub on Urban Poverty, ActionAid India, in collaboration with the Department of Sociology, Tezpur University, based in Tezpur, Assam.
PLEASE NOTE: The course is strictly residential. Participants are expected to stay at the venue even if they are from Tezpur or nearby. All participants are expected to stay through the entire course and not leave halfway unless there are compelling reasons like a sudden family emergency. Applicants must remember that leaving midway without sufficiently valid reason is likely to affect the prospects of others from their organization that might apply for other courses at UAS in the future. These restrictions are designed to ensure equity and inclusiveness across all participants.
How to Apply
You may fill the application form and email it to the following email id: firstname.lastname@example.org such that it reaches us before midnight IST latest by 27th June 2017. Alternatively, You may print the application form and send it by post or courier to the address below.
PLEASE APPLY EARLY! Closing date for applications is 27th June 2017 (midnight IST)
Click here for application form.
Meena R Menon and Anju Manikoth (Urban Action School); Mrinal Gohain (ActionAid India) and Chandan Kumar Sharma (Tezpur University)
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