Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Sign in

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.

MIT World — special events and lectures

MIT World — special events and lectures

Category: Events | Updated almost 2 years ago

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


Viewed
9063 times

More from MIT World — special events and lectures

From Space to Energy: Changing the World. For Good.

From Space to Energy: Changing the ...

Added over 5 years ago | 00:55:20 | 5681 views

The Black Hole at the Center of Our Galaxy

The Black Hole at the Center of Our...

Added over 5 years ago | 01:14:00 | 5339 views

Open Education for an Open World

Open Education for an Open World

Added over 5 years ago | 00:45:31 | 13088 views

Bioengineering at MIT: Building Bridges Between the Sciences, Engineering and Health Care  (Part One)

Bioengineering at MIT: Building Bri...

Added over 5 years ago | 01:51:00 | 6876 views

Leading Change: A Conversation with Ron Williams

Leading Change: A Conversation with...

Added over 5 years ago | 00:56:20 | 9421 views

Energy Innovation at Scale

Energy Innovation at Scale

Added over 5 years ago | 01:00:00 | 14640 views