MULTICULTURAL AND SECURE URBAN AREAS: THE IMPORTANCE OF SOCIAL CONNECTEDNESS – THE CASE OF NICOSIA, CYPRUS.
Multicultural and Secure Urban areas: The Importance of Social Connectedness – The case of Nicosia, Cyprus.
When we speak of multicultural and secure urban areas – it is usually within the perspective of outsiders and insiders / locals and foreigners, newcomers and locals / “us” and “them”. These conversations are generally marked within linear and static frameworks, which limit the omni-cultural nature of truly cosmopolitan, secure, globally linked, and socially connected urban societies.
The city is constantly growing to house many different groups within it. As the city grows, it changes, it accommodates newcomers and new ideas / ideologies / and power structures – dynamics. As urban public spaces expand, the question of the city’s / country’s identity and its people are challenged, because of the fusion of cultures morphing into an all-together new public identity. Their adaption of these ever-new spaces is further deepened with globalisation – making social connectedness both an internal and an external construct.
This is because it highlights the level of cosmopolitanism, security, and multi-culturalism within these urban areas – which most cities thrive upon, and perhaps more pressing – the degree to which those spaces are connected on a global scale and how they are perceived internationally.
How we share and re-create / re-build changing spaces is at the core of the debate within not only Cyprus, but also how Europe and its wider region is dealing with its own internal dynamics in relation to particularly the Syrian refugees, while managing their own internal migrant populations and the sustainability of these syntheses.
This research focuses on the necessity of increasing social-connectedness within policy and educational design, as a vital tool for creating secure multi-cultural urban areas.
The research focuses on two critical elements of urban social design – Re-creating/Re-building the City, and Sharing the City, as a way to ensure socio-economic growth and development in divided and problematic urban areas.