4 \ How to consider those who are in a weaker position?

In this episode, we meet urban theology professor Henrietta Grönlund from the University of Helsinki. In her research, Henrietta has focused on examining civil society organisations and their roles in society, as well as doing good, and the values related to these themes.

At the beginning of the episode, we open up the concept of urban theology and how it is related to the design of cities. After that, we discuss how it is often perceived as challenging to involve the multiple voices of the citizens in city design. In the episode, we will also hear how the desire of the citizens to participate and influence can be supported so that those in the weakest position are also taken into account.

"Non-governmental organisations and organically formed communities play a big role in reaching people in a weaker position. People´s agency should be taken seriously because we have a huge unused resource there."

Material recommendations by Henrietta:

Lähiöiden yhteisöllinen resilienssi - tukimushanke:

Loppuseminaarin tallenne

Hankkeen blogi

Tutkimustulokset

Short summary of the episode:

In this podcast episode, the concept of urban theology is explored. Herietta Grönlund explains that the concept examines the intersection of urban environments, religion and values. She stresses the importance of civic engagement and the role of civil society in urban planning and service development.

Henrietta emphasizes that urban development must be driven by the needs and aspirations of all citisens, in particular those in vulnerable or minority communities who often experience exclusion from decision-making processes. To facilitate their involvement, she suggests lowering the participation threshold and building trust through sustained engagement and investment of time and resources.

Furthermore, Henrietta highlights the essential role of civil society organisations in fostering community spirit and wellbeing, particularly in meeting fundamental needs such as food, security, and human relationships. She urges public actors to recognise civic activity as a valuable resource and to enable inclusion in urban planning processes on a long-term basis, rather than on a project-by-project basis.

To achieve these objectives, Henrietta emphasises the need for city stakeholders to critically examine their own prejudices and genuinely strive to understand the needs of different population groups. By prioritising trust-building and inclusion in urban planning and development, cities can become more equitable and sustainable in achieving healthy, thriving communities.

Guest: Henrietta Grönlund, Professor, Urban Theology, University of Helsinki

Material recommendations by Henrietta:

Lähiöiden yhteisöllinen resilienssi - tukimushanke:

Loppuseminaarin tallenne

Hankkeen blogi

Tutkimustulokset

Short summary of the episode:

In this podcast episode, the concept of urban theology is explored. Herietta Grönlund explains that the concept examines the intersection of urban environments, religion and values. She stresses the importance of civic engagement and the role of civil society in urban planning and service development.

Henrietta emphasizes that urban development must be driven by the needs and aspirations of all citisens, in particular those in vulnerable or minority communities who often experience exclusion from decision-making processes. To facilitate their involvement, she suggests lowering the participation threshold and building trust through sustained engagement and investment of time and resources.

Furthermore, Henrietta highlights the essential role of civil society organisations in fostering community spirit and wellbeing, particularly in meeting fundamental needs such as food, security, and human relationships. She urges public actors to recognise civic activity as a valuable resource and to enable inclusion in urban planning processes on a long-term basis, rather than on a project-by-project basis.

To achieve these objectives, Henrietta emphasises the need for city stakeholders to critically examine their own prejudices and genuinely strive to understand the needs of different population groups. By prioritising trust-building and inclusion in urban planning and development, cities can become more equitable and sustainable in achieving healthy, thriving communities.

© 2023 Digitalist Group. All Rights Reserved.