Municipalism has been the magic buzzword in debates about new urban movements and the democratization of politics. In Europe it is currently associated especially with cities in Spain, the most prominent Barcelona, where the citizens platform Barcelona en Comú is trying to radically open the sphere of politics to social movements and neighborhood assemblies. At the same time Barcelona en Comú is working on establishing a global network of Radical Cities reacting on the fact, that Municipalism has become a worldwide movement over the past years by citizen platforms taking political power and using the city as a starting point for profound democratic change.
Radio dérive broadcasts an introductory lecture on Municipalism by Bertie Russell, activist at the social movement organization Plan C (UK) and researcher at the University of Sheffield. In his lecture given at urbanize! Festival Vienna in October 2017, Bertie Russell defines four essential pillars of Municipalist politics: The feminization of politics, the expansion of the commons, the re-municipialication of public services and the re-designing of democracy. (Lecture in english language.)
Bertie Russell works at the Urban Institute, University of Sheffield, and is an activist at the social movement organization Plan C (UK). His interests are focusing on participatory and deliberative democracy; utopianism and directional demands; the dismantling of post-politics; the organization of the commons and post-capitalist transition; and the rise of new forms of urban internationalism.