Eindhoven University of Technology
Who we are
The Dutch research team is led by Dr Oana Druta (Assistant Professor) and Louwrens Botha (PhD candidate) from the research group Urbanism and Urban Architecture at the TU/e. We are responsible for leading the mapping process and establishing a typology of places and practices of community resilience.
To read more about us, visit our website here.
Our role in the project
Within the framework of CoNECT, Louwrens’s PhD research has the specific aim of understanding how community initiatives and everyday practices of resilience contribute to the imagination and creation of alternative futures. How do these practices allow people to experiment with radically different ways of living, in a way that remains relevant to their daily lives? And how does this affect their ability to imagine alternative futures together, and show a wider public what might be possible? These questions will be explored through mapping, ethnographic research, and participatory action research within selected case studies in Rotterdam and Eindhoven.
What ‘resilience’ means to us
The term ‘resilience’ is often used as vague, catch-all term without critical engagement or acknowledgement of its political dimension. At worst, it is used to justify neoliberal and austerity agendas of state disinvestment, essentially leaving ‘resilient’ communities to their own devices in the face of large crises and everyday struggles. Against this we want to articulate a progressive and grounded position on resilience, foregrounding the agency and empowerment of communities.
We understand resilience as consisting of a spectrum of meanings, ranging from engineering resilience (resistance to change), to ecological resilience (adaptation to change), to transformative resilience (progressive, proactive change). We can use these meanings to explore what a community-oriented understanding of resilience might look like:
Resistance: what external pressures does a community want to resist, and what is to be preserved?
Adaptation: what forces will communities need to adapt to, and what values steer that adaptation?
Transformation: what kind of changes do communities desire, and how can those become active drivers of change?