On December 12th 2023, Smoki Musaraj, holder of the 2023-24 Germaine Tillion: Tomorrow, the Mediterranean – Région Sud/Iméra Chair, will organize at Iméra, the Institute for Advanced Study of Aix-Marseille University, a public workshop entitled “Mediterranean Cities Tomorrow: Between Tourism Massification and Migration Flows”.
From Barcelona to Istanbul, from Naples to Marseille, Mediterranean cities have been experiencing tourism massification and increased migration, two different kinds of population movements that are transforming the urban landscapes of these cities. In managing these different flows, municipal policies and grassroots movements in several Mediterranean cities contrast with national or transnational trends. Some welcome migration even as “Fortress Europe” policies seeks to curb migration flows; others, yet, target the Airbnb economy as a threat to the life of the city despite the economic gains that tourism might bring to some. What is the future of Mediterranean cities in light of these massive and qualitatively different population movements and urban face-lifts? How, if at all, are these movements and transformations similar or different to ones from the past? Can Mediterranean cities hold up to their claims to cosmopolitanism and hospitality as they transform to meet the demands of the tourism economy, on the one hand, and those of the continuous migration flows, on the other hand?
This workshop will explore how these two different but overlapping transformations—tourism massification and migration—have shaped/are shaping the Mediterranean city(ies) of yesterday, today and tomorrow. This is an invitation to an interdisciplinary conversation organized in two roundtables.
12 December 2023 9:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Iméra’s Maison Neuve Meeting Room (access Iméra by allée Jean-Louis Pons)
9:15AM: WELCOMING REMARKS, MARIE-PIERRE ULLOA
INTRODUCTION, SMOKI MUSARAJ
9:45AM-11AM : KEYNOTE ADDRESS, GIOVANNI SEMI :
Crises, informality and rent-extraction: an ordinary Mediterranean
11:30AM-1PM: SESSION # 1 MIGRATION AND THE FABRIC OF MEDITERRANEAN CITIES
CHAIR GIULIA FABBIANO, IDEMEC, MMSH
YVAN GASTAUT, UNIVERSITÉ CÔTE D’AZUR, NICE
CAMILLE SCHMOLL, EHESS-GÉOGRAPHIE-CITÉ, PARIS
SOFIA EL ARABI, SORBONNE, Iméra/EDINBURGH UNIVERSITY
YOANN MORVAN, MESOPOLHIS
2:30PM-4:00PM: SESSION # 2 MASS TOURISM, GENTRIFICATION AND SOCIAL TRANSFORMATIONS
CHAIR CYRIL ISNART, IDEMEC, MMSH
MURIEL GIRARD, ECOLE NATIONALE SUPERIEURE D’ARCHITECTURE, MARSEILLE
DIONIGI ALBERA, CNRS, MMSH
ANGELINE CAPON, ECOLE NATIONALE SUPERIEURE D’ARCHITECTURE, MARSEILLE
GWENAËLLE DOURTHE, DOCTORANTE EN GÉOGRAPHIE, TELEMME IN SESSION 2
The following are some initial questions to help guide the conversation but we are open to considering other related questions as well:
- How are rising flows of migration and tourism transforming contemporary Mediterranean cities? How do local municipalities address these movements in specific policies, for instance, the management of public space or housing?
- How are residents responding to the effects of migration and tourism on their cities? How does the Airbnb economy transform formerly poor neighborhoods?
- What are the concerns about the future of the Mediterranean port-cities raised by social networks and initiatives that claim “the right to the city”?
- Where is the “Airbnb business model” under fire in the Mediterranean? Is there a shift in public opinions over the Airbnb economy?
- What imaginaries of the Mediterranean immigrant-rich city emerge through these official policies and grassroots initiatives, and how different are they from the imaginaries of the past?
The bilinguism is en vigueur at Iméra, and the workshop participants are welcome to express themselves/address the audience in French or in English.
- Smoki Musaraj, PhD, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Ohio University; Germaine Tillion: Tomorrow, the Mediterranean – Région Sud/Iméra Chair (2023-24);
- Marie-Pierre Ulloa, PhD, Director, Mediterranean Program, Iméra, Institute for Advanced Study of Aix-Marseille University.
About our Research Fellow
Smoki Musaraj is holder of the 2023-24 Germaine Tillion: Tomorrow, the Mediterranean – Région Sud/Iméra Chair and Associate Professor of Anthropology at Ohio University, USA.
She was born and raised in Tirana, Albania. She pursued her undergraduate education at Trent University, Canada and received an MA in Political Science and a PhD in Anthropology from the New School for Social Research, New York, USA. From 2012 to 2014, she served as a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Institute of Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion at the University of California, Irvine.
Dr. Musaraj’s expertise focuses on economic and legal anthropology. She has conducted ethnographic research in various parts of Albania over the past fifteen years. Her first book, Tales from Albarado: Ponzi Logics of Accumulation in Postsocialist Albania (Cornell 2020), traces how a dozen of ponzi schemes emerged and spread in Albania, how they were legitimized by state institutions and media representations, and how people from various walks of life invested their savings, remittances, and housing into the schemes. Dr. Musaraj has also researched and published various articles and chapters that examine measurements and representations of corruption in Albania and Southeast Europe more broadly. She has co-edited several edited volumes that span the topics of digital finance and financial inclusion, and neoliberal transformations in the postcommunist space.
At Iméra, the Institute for Advanced Study of Aix-Marseille University, Smoki Musaraj explores the evolving dynamics of Mediterranean cities in the face of increasing migration, tourism, and social movements claiming the “right to the city.” Learn more about her research project at Iméra in the below interview: