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On the 30th of January, we hosted the fourth edition of the Urban Studies Network Day at the Lloyd Hotel. The Centre for Urban Studies (CUS) co-hosted this networking event for urban scholars with the CREATE research program, the Amsterdam Centre for Urban History (ACUH), and the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA).

This year’s network day, jointly sponsored by CREATE and CUS, for urban scholars based at the social sciences and humanities, was an inspiring experience. After a walking lunch Fred Weerman – member of the SSH ‘beraad’, dean of the Faculty of Humanities and professor of Dutch Linguistics – kicked off the day with a keynote on the importance of SSH collaboration from a national perspective. Hereafter, Tim Verlaan and Janna Coomans briefly presented their past collaborative projects which they realized through a joint seed grant sponsored by ACHI and CUS. This set the stage for an exhilarating round of one-minute presentations of the research engagements of all those present. The commonalities, complementarities and differences between these engagements were explored in three rounds of one-to-one ‘impromptu networking’, which was followed by a plenary discussion to distill overarching themes for further discussion. After a well-deserved coffee break we went on to work on the identified themes at round tables with a mix of social scientists, humanity scholars and even artists. Aside from the pre-set round tables surrounding ‘Urban Space: Past – Present - Future’ and ‘Smart Cities, a Critical View’, three other round tables were formulated around the following themes: ‘(Historical) Urban Citizenship and the Right to the City’, ‘Spaces of Belonging’ and ‘Urban Meaning Making, Spirituality, Nature, Health and Religion’. All these round tables presented their inspiring explorations and hopefully grounds for further collaborations. What more could we wish for?

Now we are ready to launch our second joint seed grant call to further these ideas and explorations for collaboration, or other ideas that have arisen since the network day. Here you can find the call text. Take your chance and we hope to see you next year!