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Public Space and Placemaking in African Cities


S P E C I A L   I S S U E
to be launched at 11th World Urban Forum in Katowice, 26-30 June 2022


This special issue on 'Public Space and Placemaking in African Cities' of The Journal of Public Space invites writings, reflections, research, case studies and photo essays related to the cities and public spaces of the African continent. We invite scholars, designers, planners, city practitioners, historians and writers to offer critical and innovative contributions to understanding meanings and practices in plural and diverse African spaces, contexts, climates, regional and local scales, and histories.

This special issue collects both full research articles (max 8.000 words), and shorter essays, case studies and photo essays (max 3.000 words).

This issue will contribute to the establishment of the Centre on African Public Spaces (CAPS), a project initiated by the City of Johannesburg (South Africa) in collaboration with other African cities, universities and community advocacy groups. As a Pan-African urban lab for public space, CAPS will be a home and resource to a community of urban practitioners and thinkers, students, scholars and civil society activists dedicated to connect, exchange experiences, advance knowledge, share resources, grow expertise and mobilize on a wide range of relevant local, regional and global issues. 


Read more about Public Space and Placemaking in African Cities


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Current Issue

Vol 6 No 1 (2021): Re-visioning Places of Public Gathering in the Contemporary Arab Urbanism
Cover image: Public space in Dubai. Picture by Mona Helmy
Cover image: Public space in Dubai. Picture by Mona Helmy

Guest Editor: Mona Helmy
Managing Editor: Luisa Bravo
Assistant Editor: Merham M. Keleg 

Published: 2021-04-30
  • Re-visioning Places of Public Gathering in the Contemporary Arab Urbanism
    Mona Helmy
  • On the Meanings and Uses of Urban Space in the Arab City: An Historical Perspective
    Nezar AlSayyad
  • Urban Elements in the Saudi Arabian Najd Region and their Influence on Creating Threshold Spaces
    Mohammed Mashary Alnaim
  • Public Space as a Venue for Peacebuilding in Lebanon?
    Aseel Naamani, Ruth Simpson
  • Investigating Users Changing Needs in Relation to Non-designed or Unplanned Public Spaces in Cairo
    Joseph Milad Namar, Moahmed A. Salheen, Ayat Ismail
  • The Redemptive Potential of the Street. A Multi-angular Analysis of Dubai’s Pedestrian Infrastructure
    Lamia Abdelfattah, Filippo Bazzoni, Rawad Choubassi
  • New Typologies of Contemporary Shopping Malls in Egypt
    Karim Wagih Fawzi Youssef
  • The Segregation in Access to Spaces for Urban Activities during COVID-19 Pandemic in Relation to Gated Communities in Egypt
    Hellen Aziz, Salma Ellakany
  • COVID-19 Pandemic: Between Public Space and Users’ Behaviours
    Hassan Elmouelhi, Sara Nowar, Hellen Aziz, Nada Abdrabou, Ahmed Mokhtar Gaballah, Tayseer Khairy
  • Fostering Interactions at Public Open Spaces
    Arushi Malhotra, Ranjana Dobriyal
  • Post-development Practices of Public Space, Between Cohabitation and "Domination" of New Atmospheres
    Abdellah Moussalih
  • What Happened to the Public Spaces of the Arab World?
    Tarek Fouani
  • Khobar City Plan and the New Public Space in Saudi Arabia
    Atef Alshehri, Lulu Almana
  • Public Spaces in the Arab Region
    Elaf Raslan, Lubna Shaheen
  • Heritage in the Street: Megawra | BEC’s Athar Lina Initiative in Historic Cairo
    May al-Ibrashy
DISCLAIMER: The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this journal do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries, or regarding its economic system or degree of development. The analysis, conclusions and recommendations of this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme. Reference in this journal of any specific commercial products, brand names, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name does not constitute endorsement, recommendation, or favouring by UN-Habitat or its officers, nor does such reference constitute an endorsement of UN-Habitat.

"Public space
in cities is a common good, meant to be open, inclusive and democratic, a fundamental human right for everybody."

Dr Luisa Bravo
The Journal of Public Space, Founder and Editor in Chief
City Space Architecture, Founding Member and President
(from the statement submitted at the 26th UN-Habitat Governing Council held in Nairobi, Kenya, 8-12 May 2017)
Stand up for Public Space!  |  UN-Habitat Global Urban Lecture by Dr Luisa Bravo (click here)  |  A global campaign launched at the Habitat III conference in Quito, Ecuador, 2016 (click here)

The Journal of Public Space is a non-profit project. We produce public knowledge on public space. We don't ask for APCs (Article Processing Charges) to our authors. Nobody is paying, neither for publishing nor for reading. Our Editor in Chief and our Editorial Team are not paid, they all volunteer their time to accomplish our mission.
Please consider to make a donation to our publisher City Space Architecture, a non profit organization based in Italy, even a small donation can make a difference. Thank you very much. 


Open Access Journal
ISSN 2206-9658