Public purpose in temporary self-organization practices: Lessons from Santiago’s Mapocho Pedaleable practice


  • Marisol García González Development Planning Unit, University College London



This paper examines the relation between self-organization and State institutions through the study of Santiago’s Mapocho Pedaleable practice; a reclamation of an unused river bed in the city as a space for the public. Centering in the discussion of the public sphere, the paper critically explores the extent to which self-organization practices challenge the meaning of the public when creating spaces in which citizens come together, with a common purpose, in an intent to compel authorities to action. By questioning the relationship between civic organizations and State institutions, the research seeks to unravel the extent to which the different actors involved pursue public purpose through self-organization practices. I suggest that the transformative potential of self-organized practices can only be expanded when public purpose predominate over private interests at stake. A qualitative research approach was adopted to conduct this exploratory study, based primarily on semi-structured interviews conducted in the field that are part of a wider research endeavor. 

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Come citare

García González M. (2018). Public purpose in temporary self-organization practices: Lessons from Santiago’s Mapocho Pedaleable practice. Tracce Urbane. Rivista Italiana Transdisciplinare Di Studi Urbani, 2(4).