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Intercultural perspectives on experiences of space and place

Increasingly globalised and globally connected lifestyles pose a variety of challenges to urban life. Only with an intercultural understanding of how people perceive and experience space and place can some of these challenges be understood and overcome. A new cooperation between the Spatial Modelling Lab (RAM) and a team from the Faculty of Architecture, University of Hong Kong, lead by Dr Guibo Sun addresses this aspect.

In the joint project, which is co-funded by the DAAD (Germany) and the Research Grants Council (Hong Kong) under the Germany – Hong Kong Joint Research Scheme, we will use an intercultural perspective to contribute to the methodological and empirical understanding of people's experiences of everyday spaces and places. In doing so, we will look at different scales such as the residential space, the neighbourhood level, and public space. Our collaboration brings together a research team from Germany and Hong Kong with expertise in spatial planning, human geography, and geographic information science. Spatial planners and geographic information scientists are both increasingly interested in the study of experienced space. Planners aim to transform anonymous space into intimate, liveable places, while geoinformation scientists seek to formally grasp and represent space and place. These two approaches are intertwined: Planning practices feed into the methodological exploration of place in geographical information science, whose methodological expertise in turn supports the acquisition of empirical evidence for planning practices.

The project teams are based at the School of Spatial Planning at TU Dortmund University and the Department of Urban Planning and Design at the University of Hong Kong. Our RAM team consists of Jun.-Prof. Dr. René Westerholt (Co-I), as well as Liudmila Slivinskaya and Víctor Cobs Muñoz. The Hong Kong team consists of Dr Guibo Sun (Co-I) and Jianting Zhao (research assistant and PhD student). Our project includes case studies in Dortmund and Hong Kong. In addition, we will set up a joint seminar for doctoral students from Dortmund and Hong Kong to initiate continuous cooperation and academic exchange between the two institutions, even beyond the immediate project team.

Associated researchers


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Location & approach

The campus of TU Dort­mund University is located close to interstate junction Dort­mund West, where the Sauerlandlinie A 45 (Frankfurt-Dort­mund) crosses the Ruhrschnellweg B 1 / A 40. The best interstate exit to take from A 45 is "Dort­mund-Eichlinghofen" (closer to Campus Süd), and from B 1 / A 40 "Dort­mund-Dorstfeld" (closer to Campus Nord). Signs for the uni­ver­si­ty are located at both exits. Also, there is a new exit before you pass over the B 1-bridge leading into Dort­mund.

To get from Campus Nord to Campus Süd by car, there is the connection via Vogelpothsweg/Baroper Straße. We recommend you leave your car on one of the parking lots at Campus Nord and use the H-Bahn (suspended monorail system), which conveniently connects the two campuses.

TU Dort­mund University has its own train station ("Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät"). From there, suburban trains (S-Bahn) leave for Dort­mund main station ("Dort­mund Hauptbahnhof") and Düsseldorf main station via the "Düsseldorf Airport Train Station" (take S-Bahn number 1, which leaves every 20 or 30 minutes). The uni­ver­si­ty is easily reached from Bochum, Essen, Mülheim an der Ruhr and Duisburg.

You can also take the bus or subway train from Dort­mund city to the uni­ver­si­ty: From Dort­mund main station, you can take any train bound for the Station "Stadtgarten", usually lines U41, U45, U 47 and U49. At "Stadtgarten" you switch trains and get on line U42 towards "Hombruch". Look out for the Station "An der Palmweide". From the bus stop just across the road, busses bound for TU Dort­mund University leave every ten minutes (445, 447 and 462). Another option is to take the subway routes U41, U45, U47 and U49 from Dort­mund main station to the stop "Dort­mund Kampstraße". From there, take U43 or U44 to the stop "Dort­mund Wittener Straße". Switch to bus line 447 and get off at "Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät S".

The AirportExpress is a fast and convenient means of transport from Dort­mund Airport (DTM) to Dort­mund Central Station, taking you there in little more than 20 minutes. From Dort­mund Central Station, you can continue to the uni­ver­si­ty campus by interurban railway (S-Bahn). A larger range of in­ter­na­tio­nal flight connections is offered at Düsseldorf Airport (DUS), which is about 60 kilometres away and can be directly reached by S-Bahn from the uni­ver­si­ty station.

The H-Bahn is one of the hallmarks of TU Dort­mund University. There are two stations on Campus Nord. One ("Dort­mund Uni­ver­si­tät S") is directly located at the suburban train stop, which connects the uni­ver­si­ty directly with the city of Dort­mund and the rest of the Ruhr Area. Also from this station, there are connections to the "Technologiepark" and (via Campus Süd) Eichlinghofen. The other station is located at the dining hall at Campus Nord and offers a direct connection to Campus Süd every five minutes.

The facilities of TU Dort­mund University are spread over two campuses, the larger Campus North and the smaller Campus South. Additionally, some areas of the uni­ver­si­ty are located in the adjacent "Technologiepark".

Site Map of TU Dort­mund University (Second Page in English)