Annual RC21 Conference 2011

The struggle to belong. Dealing with diversity in 21st century urban settings
Amsterdam (The Netherlands), July 7-9 2011

Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research – Urban Studies
University of Amsterdam – The Netherlands

7. ‘Gated Communities’ from a Global Perspective

This session seeks to critically question issues surrounding the privatization and gating of residential developments on a global scale. While recent decades have witnessed a surge in the growth of ‘gated communities’, the research focus has been predominantly on gated developments of homogeneous social groups, which are more often than not presented within suburban contexts. This session seeks papers, which both incorporate and move beyond this view, examining theories of gating and its relationship to diversity and the desire to belong. It is therefore interested in, but not restricted to, papers which examine the following:

  • The emergence of ‘classic’ gated communities within different cultural contexts.
  • Developments which are gated yet ‘socially mixed’, or, indeed, are the result of ‘bottom-up’ forces within both wealthy and deprived neighbourhoods.
  • The degree to which higher-density gated developments, such as apartment complexes, with private forms of communal space such as courtyards and gardens, can help to broaden theories and definitions of gated communities.
  • The role of private services firms, such as management companies, within gated communities, including, if relevant, the impact of the recent global economic crisis on the provision of such services.

In keeping with the theme of the conference, the session seeks a broad range of papers dealing with the topic from the perspective of both the Global South and North.

Session Organiser:
Philip Lawton, Visiting Researcher, University of Amsterdam. Email:

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21 December 2011
Deadline for abstract submission

10 January 2011
Notification of selected abstracts

1 March 2011
Registration open

15 May 2011
Deadline for early bird registration and for (some) hotel options

15 May 2011
Deadline for paper submission

15 June 2011
Papers online

7-9 July 2011