After three years of Social Life, today we're launching our new website with a series of blogs about places around the globe - from Copenhagen, Bolivia, New York, Seoul and San Francisco - describing how people are reshaping their local neighbourhoods.
Have a look at our new projects.
We’re carrying out benchmarking research on two major regeneration schemes in London, in South Acton and on the Aylesbury estate in Southwark. It’s important that we understand the social impact of these major interventions in local neighbourhoods over the long term - what are the social consequences of demolishing and rebuilding existing neighbourhoods, for the residents who live there now and those who have yet to move in. As London reshapes itself at breakneck pace, and insecurity and anxieties rise in the face of high housing costs, a dwindling supply of affordable housing, and weaker welfare safety net for vulnerable people, it’s vital that we all have access to good evidence about the effect of the current approach to housing and regeneration policy.
All of Social Life’s work explores the relationships between people and the places they live in. We believe that everyday experience plays too small a role in designing and reshaping neighbourhoods, and we have been working with a architects, property developers, community organisations, housing associations and local councils to try to find ways to bring the direct experience of residents more systematically into plans for change. This means working with different agendas, navigating power differences between those who own land and housing and those who use an area, and tensions between different notions of what should be valued - what residents hold dear and what builds community and neighbourliness does not always fall neatly into line with more top down approaches to urban design.
We're also developing our social sustainability framework, and thinking about how we use local data.
We’re very pleased with the work we have done for Sutton Council, evolving our approach to social sustainabilty - originally devised to apply to new housing developments - to assess how Sutton's local neighbourhoods are faring. We’ve created an online tool so that this framework can be replicated by council officers, other agencies and community organisations.
Please have a look at our work, and get in touch if you’d like to find out more. We're always open to new conversations and collaborations.