Prof. Sukran Golbasi, PhD

Urban Renewal Projects as Accumulation by Dispossession



The goal of this paper is to explain the spatial reflections of economic changes from an urban political economic perspective.  Accordingly, Lefebvre’s thesis on ”the existence of capitalism depends on the urban space”, Foucault’s theory of “power” and David Harvey’s theory of “Spatio-Temporal Fixes” and “Accumulation by dispossession” approaches were taken as a reference point for this study. The process of urban renovation,  which is accelerated in Turkey after 2000,  progresses towards the unequal distribution of urban rent by application with the neoliberal policy.  In this regard, the needs and opinions of the inhabitants of the city and the ecological environment are ignored and the destruction of the public spaces are emerging as the most striking problem. Which makes the cities such a place of inequality. In this process, while the needs of the local people are not taken into consideration, and the intermediation of the state to the change of property in favor of the new dominant class makes the urban as a means unequally redistribution. This situation causes the urban renewal policy to be protested in all countries. It is noteworthy that the governments acted against the resistance in a way that would enact the laws that would legalize inequality and that the process was carried out on the basis of the process. Running this project on the unplanned and unsupervised basis has already made the cities unhealthy places and this shows that the issue is worth examining in terms of its ecological, social and cultural consequences

Keywords: Urban political economy, urban transformation, accumulation by dispossession.