This webinar will explore and discuss different tools and approaches within the field of militant research, and its suitability to the current situation of communities and activist organizations in COVID and Post-COVID cities.

Militant research has its starting point in the assumption that there is no such a thing as a neutral standpoint for the production of historical, social and cultural research. Instead of a flat relativism, militant research proposes the conscious reflective study of the conditions in which research is produced. This process involves dealing with the political meaning of research (be it deeper or more evident) concerning societies and communities that are defined by inner— or outer power inequalities. Inverting the classic ethnographic method of participant observation, militant research is all about observational participation. Rather than pushing the academic agenda through social movements, militant research aims at using academic (theoretical and methodological) tools to ease the flow of bottom-up or bottom-bottom information as a means of going beyond the purely objectivist or subjectivist positions.

Friday, October 2 2020
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

The webinar will be led by Isidro López Hernández,a sociologist, anthropologist, writer, and co-founder of the militant research collective Metropolitan Observatory of Madrid. Isidro was a deputy of Madrid’s Regional Assembly from 2015-2019 and a senior researcher of the Observatorio de la Sostenibilidad en España (OSE) at the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares for over 8 years. He is a collaborator of the Barcelona based cooperative La Hidra. Isidro has authored and edited five books, including “Fin de Ciclo: Financiarización, territorio y sociedad de proprietaries en la onda larga del capitalism hispano” which brings to light the financialization processes of urban territories from 1959 to 2010 in Spain.

The webinar is moderated by Miguel Robles-Durán, Associate Professor of Urbanism and organized by the Parsons Housing Justice Lab, Parsons Graduate Urban Programs, and Graduate Minor in Design and Urban Justice at The New School.