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Release: June 13, 2002

(Photo: James Throgmorton, symposium organizer)

UI symposium to explore Berlin for insight into urban design and democracy

A group of scholars will gather at the University of Iowa June 21-22 to discuss and explore the relationship between urban spaces and the practice of democracy. Organized by James A. Throgmorton, a UI professor of urban and regional planning, "Berlin in America: A Symposium about the Relationship between Urban Spaces and the Long Term Viability of Democracy," will enable scholars from a variety of disciplines to discuss how democratic practices and urban spaces shape one another. They will do so by looking at U. S. cities with Berlin in mind.

Throgmorton said Berlin provides an excellent "lens" through which to view American urban spaces because Berlin is a complex city with a rich, varied, and -- at times -- painful past. He said symposium participants will consider how recent efforts to preserve, rebuild, and construct urban spaces in Berlin provide insight into designing urban spaces that can invigorate and sustain democratic practices in the U. S.

The symposium runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day and will meet in room 204 Jefferson Building, 127 E. Washington St. in downtown Iowa City. Although designed for scholars, the symposium is open to the public. There will be no registration fee, and no advance registration is required.

This symposium is supported by a major projects grant from UI International Programs. It is also co-sponsored by the Graduate Program of Urban and Regional Planning, the Departments of German and Political Science, and the Project on Rhetoric of Inquiry.

Questions concerning the symposium should be directed to Pamela Butler at (319) 335-0033 or or to Throgmorton at (319) 335-0037 or