Universiteit Leiden

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Research project

Night Spaces: Migration, Culture and Integration in Europe (NITE)

How are night spaces imagined, produced, experienced and narrated by migrant communities in Europe? This research project considers this question in eight European cities: Aarhus, Amsterdam, Berlin, Cork, Galway, Lisbon, London, Rotterdam. Authorities have historically wrestled with the issue of night-time control, and the hours after dark are often still perceived as harbouring threats to public order. However, current policy attention to night-time urban cultures and economies – e.g. the creation of the office of Night Mayor (Amsterdam, 2014) and Night Czar (London, 2016) - illustrates the increasing interest in the urban night. NITE’s transdisciplinary, humanities-led research will contribute otherwise overlooked evidence on the production, experience and narration of migrant urban night spaces, in their material, symbolic and virtual dimensions. The researchers investigate traditional public spaces (streets, squares), also in relation to private spaces, alongside semi-public commercial and cultural venues (cultural centres; bars and nightclubs; hotels) and new virtual spaces (digital apps).

Duration
2019 - 2022
Contact
Sara Brandellero
Funding
HERA: Humanities in the European Research Area HERA: Humanities in the European Research Area
 
EU Commission EU Commission
Partners

Leiden University, University College London, Leuphana University, Aarhus University, University of Limerick.

Night Spaces: migration, culture and integration in Europe (NITE)

How are night spaces imagined, produced, experienced and narrated by migrant communities in Europe?

This research project considers this question in eight European cities: Aarhus, Amsterdam, Berlin, Cork, Galway, Lisbon, London, Rotterdam.

Led by the University of Leiden, the research is a collaboration with teams at University College London, Leuphana University, Aarhus University and the University of Limerick.

Why research night spaces now?

Authorities have historically wrestled with the issue of night-time control, and the hours after dark are often still perceived as harbouring threats to public order and potential criminality. However, current policy attention to night-time urban cultures and economies, exemplified by the creation of the office of Night Mayor (Amsterdam, 2014) and Night Czar (London, 2016), illustrates the increasing interest in the urban night. NITE’s transdisciplinary, humanities-led research will contribute otherwise overlooked evidence on the production, experience and narration of migrant urban night spaces, in their material, symbolic and virtual dimensions.  The researchers investigate traditional public spaces (streets, squares), also in relation to private spaces, alongside semi-public commercial and cultural venues (cultural centres; bars and nightclubs; hotels) and new virtual spaces (digital apps).

In the NITE project we understand night spaces as important sites of crisis and regeneration, memory and heritage, community solidarity and growth; and night-time culture (expressed, amongst other forms,  through music, film, digital platforms, performance) as opening up spaces of belonging and intercultural understanding.

NITE takes eight cities of different scales and histories of intra- and extra-European migration as case studies. The University of Leiden team, led by Dr Sara Brandellero, will study Rotterdam, Europe’s largest port, through its large Cape-Verdean community, in comparative analysis with migrant groups in Amsterdam. This connects with the study of recent African immigration and cultural practices in public spaces in Cork and Galway, studied by the team at the University of Limerick, led by Dr Ailbhe Kenny. To strengthen the comparative, transdisciplinary focus, we consider the differing use of culture in public spaces and policing practices between the substantial Angolan and Cape Verdean communities in Lisbon and Aarhus’s Syrian refugee groups, studied by the team at the University of Aarhus, led by Dr Derek Pardue.  The University of College London team, led by Prof Ben Campkin, will focus on public spaces oriented towards LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer) migrants  – e.g. intra-European, Latino, Afro-Caribbean –, contextualised against London’s history as a place of sexual and gender diversity, and recent policy innovations recognising the value of night-spaces to social integration and supporting LGBTQ+nightlife. This focus on leisure and workspaces will be paralleled in Berlin, where research led by Prof Manuela Bojadzijev at the University of Leuphana examines the connection between night-time spaces and socio-cultural practices, studying migrant labour (South/Eastern European couriers) within the city’s growing digital economy.

Methods and approaches

We study night spaces in particular places and times and with attention to how different group experiences are shaped by conceptions of race, gender, sexuality, class and age.

With migration a defining characteristic of contemporary urban life, mobility is key to our understanding of night spaces. Drawing from geographers such as Doreen Massey and Tim Creswell we understand these spaces as mobile junctions of historical, socio-political and cultural layers, in constant transformation; and we conceive mobility as political, considering how people navigate night-time cityscapes according to and defying preconceptions of who is ‘out of place’.

Our research is transdisciplinary and humanities-led in its use of methods of socio-cultural and spatial analysis.

More information

For further details see our external website: nightspace.net.

Name Contact
Night narratives of migration in the Netherlands
(Rotterdam/Amsterdam)
Name: Dr. Sara Brandellero
Function: Project Leader/Principal Investigator, Leiden
Name: Dr. Kamila Krakowska Rodrigues
Function: Co-investigator
Name: Seger Kersbergen MA
Function: PhD Candidate
Name: Prof. Frans-Willem Korsten
Function: Promotor
Migrant Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer (LGBTQ+) communities’ nightspaces in London, 1980s to the present

Name: Professor Ben Campkin
Function: Principal Investigator

Name: Professor Matthew Beaumont
Function: Associated Researcher

Name: Lo Marshall MA
Function: Research Fellow

Berlin: migrant bike couriers in the »Smart City« at night

Name: Professor Manuela Bojadzijev
Function: Principal Investigator

Name: Laura-Solmaz Litschel MA
Function: Research Assistant and PhD candidate

Migrant youth out of place? Cross-cultural understandings of Night and Belonging in Lisbon and Aarhus

Name: Dr. Derek Pardue
Function: Principal Investigator

Cork and Galway: strangers in the night -
African migrant music-making in Irish cities

Name: Dr. Ailbhe Kenny
Function: Principal Investigator

Name: Dr. Katherine Young
Function: Postdoctoral researcher

Name Contact

Mr Mário Alves
President Centro Interculturacidade

Lisbon, Portugal
centro@interculturacidade.gmail.com

Mr Ivan Barbosa
Film Director

Amsterdam, Netherlands
barbosaone@gmail.com

Dr Tim Crocker-Buqué
Raze Collective

London, UK
drtimcb@fastmail.com
Ms Hannah Kiely
Chief Executive 
Galway 2020 (European City of Culture) 

Galway, Ireland
hannah@galway2020.ie

Ms Amy Lamé
London Night Czar

Mayor of London Office: London, UK
amy.lame@london.gov.uk

Mr Mirik Milan
Night Mayor Amsterdam 2014-2018;
Night Time Consultant

VibeLab: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
mirik@vibe-lab.org  

Mr Ben Walters
Queer Spaces Network

11 Cole House Bayliss Road
London SE1 7AZ UK

benjaminwalters@gmail.com

Mr Anders Winther
Danish Refugee Council

Aarhus, Denmark
anders.winther@drc.dk

Dr Susanne Fuchs
Head of Programme SOCIETY
The Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg
(Institute of Advanced Study)

Lehmkuhlenbusch 4D-27753
Delmenhorst Germany

sfuchs@h-w-k.de

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, the Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration and the Sixth Framework Programme for research and technological development.
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