During this Pavilion Talk we were delighted to have Dr Torange Khonsari as our guest speaker. Dr. Khonsari focused on the community as a family-like concept, emphasizing collaboration over competition and advocating for a commons governance model. She outlined obstacles to citizen engagement and proposed a methodology for community involvement in urban planning. The discussion underscored the significance of commons in rejuvenating democracy, emphasizing the need for capacity building at both government and community levels. Overall, the participants stressed the importance of policy implementation at various scales and the development of localized industries with a common, horizontal structure for inclusive decision-making. Mr. Pourvaziri discussed the need to translate their conversation into the language and literature of policy to initiate advocacy efforts with city leaders, mayors, and politicians. He emphasized the importance of revitalizing democratic engagement and the election process to address global, national, and local challenges related to climate change and consumption. Mr. Moreno highlighted the historical foundation of Latin American cities and the concept of "rest commons," suggesting a need for rethinking urban spaces in the face of current challenges.
Dr Torange Khonsari is Co-Founder and Director of the urbanism, public art and architecture practice Public Works since 2004, an inter- disciplinary practice working on co-production methods in art, architecture, urbanism, systems thinking and citizenship. Public Works is on the GLA’s ADUP (Architecture, Design, Urbanism Panel) framework. Her strategic design practice focuses on transformational design, design as form of inquiry and design intervention as forms of new urban imaginary. Her projects directly impact public space, democratic governance and community development. She works with local organisations, communities, government bodies and stakeholders. Torange has had 23 years in academic teaching in architecture and design. She is currently teaching on the suit of post graduate and doctoral courses she wrote called Design for Cultural Commons at London Metropolitan University where she is the course leader. She is Unit Master at the Architecture- al Association. She has taught at international universities such as UMA school of architecture in Sweden, unit leader at Royal College of Art - London as well as a visiting professor at Barbican and Guildhall school of Music and Drama. She is currently visiting professor at International University of Barcelona on the MA - emergency architecture. Torange delivered a TEDx talk on Harnessing the power of Civic Commons. She completed being a consultant on the five year framework on the Mayor of London’s Specialist Assistant Team for community engagement in regeneration. She is a chartered designer and an expert adviser for Design Council. She has been invited to be one of the 9 experts on Design Council’s initiative Design for Planet fellowship 2021/22.
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