UBC Graduate Research

Reducing Violence in Spontaneous Settlements : A Public Space Strategy Morazzani Diaz, Grace


This project seeks to improve the living conditions of the more than 107 million people living in spontaneous settlements in Latin America and reduce the levels of urban violence through an interdisciplinary process. This work recognizes that public space strategy can not provide a complete solution to urban violence and human behavior. Nonetheless, it considers that physical media and public social spaces are fundamental for providing the means to other disciplines to work, such as sociology, education, psychology, and others. This projects questions: what is the agency of space in the recurrence of violent acts? Is it possible to reduce violence in informal settlements by modifying the spatial settings and living conditions? How can we, as designers, help reduce risk factors that may take children and young adults to consider criminality as their only means for survival? By introducing spatial interventions that improve living conditions in spontaneous settlements, this project expects to provide the means to promote the healthy development of children through strategies based on the social dynamic of informal settlements. The main objective of this work is to analyze in-depth the spatial conditions that generate violence and produce a toolkit of physical interventions in spontaneous settlements that can help reduce the risk factors for children and young adults through the already established social dynamics of informal settlements. Lastly, a test design will exemplify the application of this toolkit on the grounds of La Cota 905, an informal settlement in Caracas known for its high levels of violence and criminal activities.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International