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Keynote Speakers

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Ash AminAsh Amin

Ash Amin is Chair of Geography at Cambridge University.  His most recent book is Land of Strangers, published by Polity Press in 2012.  His next book is Arts of the Political: New Openings for the Left, written with Nigel Thrift, to be published by Duke University Press in Spring 2013.  His current research is on the political economy of thinking the future as ungovernable and catastrophic, particularly its implications for vulnerable communties.

>> www.geog.cam.ac.uk
>> ash.amin@geog.cam.ac.uk

Abstract

Surviving the Turbulent Future

The future is increasingly being cast by states and experts as unpredictable and dangerous, reason to fashion new ways of managing hazard and risk. In the process, a culture based on providing comprehensive risk avoidance and protection from an authorised centre is being displaced by one in which the authorities and publics are expected to work in concert to do the best they can to resist adversity. Two emerging keywords are preparedness and resilience, intended to prepare society at large to resist and recover from adversity. A reading of the political work done by this turn is offered, ranging from the selection of new hierarchies of being and worth, to the questioning of precautionary and diplomatic legacies of risk management.  The paper turns to the urban technological unconscious and to the social contract between state and citizen to articulate a counter-position.

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