Urban Commons Lab

Spaces of ‘Creative’ Resistance

Youth, Social Action and Creative Space-Making in East Asia: This project explores how the policies and practices of neoliberal capitalism in East Asia are being politically and materially contested by members of the young generation through social actions and creative space-making. From self-organized sharing and commoning to the participation in non-market economic pursuits, a growing number of bottom-up initiatives reflect a desire for alternatives to the precarity under the current socio-economic and socio-cultural structures. Through field research with young people at the locations of their engagement in social action and creative space-making in East Asia, this project will explore the significance of those actions to recreate publics, to stage socio-political movements, to create new relationships with peripheral communities in both local and urban areas. The outcomes of this project will contribute to a greater understanding of the growth of social action and creative space-making initiatives by young people in and beyond East Asia, as well as how these initiatives and movements address the various forms of precarity produced by neoliberal economies and political structures.

With support from Global Innovation Fund, UW Office of Global Affairs, East Asia Center, Japan Studies Program, Korea Studies Program, Taiwan Studies Program, China Studies Program, and Center for Global Studies of the Jackson School of International Studies, and the Department of Landscape Architecture (2020-2021). Principal investigator/ Jeff Hou. Collaborators/ Andrea Gevurts Arai, Jonathan Warren.