Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Sign in Create Account

Reverberations: Mexico City's 1985 Earthquake and the Transformation of the Capital

03/18/2002, 5:30, 10-485
Diane E. Davis

In this lecture, Diane Davis examines the impact of Mexico City's 1985 disastrous earthquake on the social, spatial, and political character of Mexico's capital city. Davis discusses the earthquake's implications for social movement, the character of land use and property ownership, and the legitimacy of the capital city's political leaders and major construction contractors and argues that sometimes physical disasters such as earthquakes can produce profoundly unanticipated beneficial effects.
In addition to empowering urban citizens to organize on their own behalf to challenge a corrupt and highly bureaucratized local government, (and thereby accelerating the urban democratic transition) Mexico City's earthquake also helped expose the political biases of government authorities and weakened the strong hold of street vendors and the informal sector on the local economy and land use. As a result, Mexico City now is governed by a democratic and more socially responsible government committed to fostering citizen participation, building new low-income housing projects, and "rescuing" Mexico City's historic cultural heritage, all with the aim of recapturing the social and symbolic centrality of the downtown area, where the earthquake produced most damage.

School of Architecture and Planning, Joint Program in City Design and Development

T11119

Comments (0)

It looks like no one has posted a comment yet. You can be the first!

You need to log in, in order to post comments. If you don’t have an account yet, sign up now!

MIT World — special events and lectures

MIT World — special events and lectures

Category: Events | Updated 5 months ago

Created
November 07, 2011 13:17
Category
Tags
License
All Rights Reserved (What is this?)
Additional Files


Viewed
3517 times

More from MIT World — special events and lectures

Knowledge Based Economy and Education: Changing Roles for Universities " The MIT Perspective

Knowledge Based Economy and Educati...

Added over 3 years ago | 00:35:34 | 2521 views

A Genius for Change, and the Passion to Do It

A Genius for Change, and the Passio...

Added over 3 years ago | 01:19:00 | 2841 views

Building Growth: Why Don't We Use What We Know

Building Growth: Why Don't We Use W...

Added over 3 years ago | 00:58:29 | 1726 views

Improving Today's Energy Systems

Improving Today's Energy Systems

Added over 3 years ago | 01:27:00 | 3117 views

The Impact of Combustion Emissions on the Atmosphere: New Tools and Techniques

The Impact of Combustion Emissions ...

Added over 3 years ago | 01:12:00 | 2047 views

Speed and Scale

Speed and Scale

Added over 3 years ago | 01:00:00 | 2979 views