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Cycling advocacy and the struggle for the urban space in São Paulo

Grant number: 17/11198-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2017
Effective date (End): May 31, 2021
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Urban and Regional Planning
Principal Investigator:Raquel Rolnik
Grantee:Letícia Lindenberg Lemos
Home Institution: Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo (FAU). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil

Abstract

In recent years, the city of São Paulo has undergone an intense process of building infrastructure for circulation of bicycles, in which the mobilization of civil society seems to have played a fundamental role. In the last two municipal administrations, the group within the civil society with demands for policies of inclusion of the bicycle in the urban mobility system - cycle-activists - has expanded its activities in the virtual networks, in the streets and in the institutional spaces of dialogue with the public power. These actors, in turn, seems to have established a synergy with a broader civil society group that fights for a common and non-privatized use of the public spaces in the city. This research project proposes to reflect about these actors in São Paulo, with a central hypothesis that they contributed to the implantation of infrastructure for cycling and guided the action of the public power through a 'repertoire of interaction' with the State (Abers et al., 2014). The project proposes to explore the dispute over the urban space and the development of cycling policies in the city of São Paulo, particularly in the last ten years, from the point of view of the incidence of the civil society on politics. The aim is to demonstrate that the building of cycling infrastructure in the territory was guided and made possible through pressure and support from the civil society. It is also intended to illuminate the debate on the specificities of the conditions of political insertion of the actors inside this movement. The project also proposes to investigate the impact of this political incidence on concrete measures taken by public power, in view of current processes of socio-spatial segregation in the macro and micro scale, as well as in the dispute of an urban space that has historically been linked to the use of the automobile in a hegemonic way.