It’s DSC Voting Time!

Elections for the Doctoral Students’ Council (DSC) 2013-2014 will close April 30th at 11:59 p.m.

To vote, please click the link to the eBallot site and follow the login instructions:

On the ballot, you will be able to vote for student representatives for the following positions:
* DSC Program Representative
* DSC At-Large Representative
* Student Academic Appeals Officer
* Faculty-Student Disciplinary Committee Panel * Student Elections Review Committee (SERC) * Advocate Advisory Board * OpenCUNY Board (if a member).

Information on all of these positions was provided during the nomination process and will be briefly reiterated below each question on the ballot. More detailed descriptions of some of the positions can be found on the DSC’s website at You can find more information on DSC Program and At-Large Representatives by following the links here: Similarly, with the external (to DSC) positions you can find descriptions by following each link here:

Andy Merrifield Visiting EES

I’ve been asked by the chair of our department, Cindi Katz, to share this message with you all.


dear all,

andy merrifield is visiting the program for the next few weeks, and would be happy to meet with you collectively and individually.  since our speaker for this thursday has had to cancel, i thought it might be a good start to schedule an informal meeting with andy in the lounge this thursday–25 april–at from 5-6.

from there you can schedule individual appointments if you are interested.

i hope you will take advantage of this interesting opportunity,

Geography Alumni and Students at the Association of American Geographers Conference

Several CUNY Geography students are presenting at this year’s Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting.  Below are a few examples of panels and paper sessions students are taking part in. For many more listings, go to


  • Uneven development through railroad infrastructures: The case of Mexico 1880-1910

Hector Agredano, PhD Student – CUNY Graduate Center

In this paper I review the literature on development and underdevelopment relating to the expansion of railroad infrastructures in Mexico at the turn of the twentieth century. These are then juxtaposed to the theory of uneven development (Smith, 1990). The expansion of transportation and communications infrastructures under the Porfiriato is then theorized through the lens of uneven development, specifically focusing on the Juárez-Torreón line of the Mexican Central Railway. Through this review I explore the potential of an alternative but complimentary narrative to the theory of uneven development that may arise from an analysis of infrastructural development during this period.


  • privatization and access on an israeli beach: understanding social protest

Naomi M Adiv, MS – CUNY Graduate Center

An ideal quality attributed to public space is universal access,  defined through quantity of goods, spatial distribution, bodily access by all persons without threat of harrassment, or access to democratic participation both in and regarding the space.

The Herzliya municipal beach falls under general Israeli public access laws.  Everyone is allowed in at all times, with lifeguards provided during particular hours. A series of shade structures also offers robust public access for individuals and families. Since 2010, only one of five  shade structures still stands on the Herzliya beach, as space has been taken over by a beachfront bar renting lounge chairs and umbrellas for upwards of 40 NIS ($10).

Here, business operates just inside of the rules, effectively edging people out who don’t comply with fee-for-service. The unspoken principle that the restaurant could colonize the public beach around the communal shade structures has been done away with; users who counted on that access are quietly being edged out.

Between July 14 and September 3, Israel witnessed the largest social protest in history of the state. Hundreds of thousands of Israelis camped out in tent cities and marched in the street, calling for government accountability and a return to the principles and practices of the welfare state.  While the protests have been criticized for lack of focus, for serving only the middle class, and for not focusing on Palestinian sovereignty, I would like to examine this micro-case of beach privatization in the context of the protests as a call for access.


  • Three back-to-back panel sessions as part of the AAG subConference

Organized by our very own alumni, Amanda Huron and Christian Anderson

“How we walk the talk: action research and activist scholarship, past, present and future.”

Wednesday, April 10
“La Brea Room” the Westin Hotel, lobby level

2403 – 12:40-2:20: Re-Imagining the University and its Publics
Sam Halvorsen: the occupy research collective in London
Camille Vergnaud: community/university engagement in France and the U.S.
Nicole Nguyen: “what sustains us?” in action research and the academy
Victoria Habermehl: the Really Open University and the Space Project – U.K.
Kurt Iveson: discussant

2503 – 2:40-4:20: Action as Research, Research as Action
Hillary Caldwell: Picture the Homeless: creating activist networks
Jonathan London: PAR in environmental justice work in California
Caitlin Cahill: Brooklyn Public Scholars and SLC/Mestizo Arts and Activism
Heather McLean: Collaborating with community based researchers to disrupt exclusionary planning in Ontario
Mara Ferreri: Anti-gentrification struggles in South London

2603 – 4:40-6:20: Expeditions and Institutes: Legacies and Futures

Ronald Horvath:The Detroit Geographic Expedition and Institute: a historic perspective
Bree Kessler: The Anchorage Geographic Expeditions
Amanda Matles: The Detroit Geographic Expedition and Institute workshop, 2012 / The New York Geographic Expedition and Institute
Matt Bissen: The New York Geographic Expedition and Institute
Cindi Katz: Detroit, New York, and beyond / The New York Geographic Expedition and Institute

CUNY Student Work Featured in Interference Archive

The work of CUNY and Cooper Union students is going to be featured at an upcoming exhibit on Book Blocs at the Interference Archive. Several CUNY folks made these beautiful and functional shields for self-defense and for broadcasting our commitment to open critical education. Details about the show are below but a few dates to keep in mind:

Tuesday 4/2 is the opening — 7-10pm at the Interference Archive.
Friday 4/5 is the premier of a documentary about the student strikes in Quebec — 7-10pm at the Interference Archive. Sunday 4/14 is a Book Bloc making workshop — noon-5pm at the Interference Archive.

Book Bloc! Shields from CUNY and Cooper Union
April 2–24, 2013

Opening Reception:
Tuesday, April 2
7–10 pm

Book blocs in their present-day incarnation first appeared in Rome in November 2010 as part of demonstrations against drastic budget cuts to the country’s public university system. Italian students began actions, occupations, and blockades by using oversize, handmade, padded book covers as banners and shields. The tactic quickly spread to other parts of Europe, the United States, and elsewhere. As a book bloc press release from London in 2010 explains, “The book bloc joins the student and public sector workers’ protest to affirm and defend what is under attack: Our universities and public libraries, literacy, thought, culture and jobs. . . . When the police kettle us, baton us, or charge us, we will not only see police violence against individuals but the state’s violence against free thought, expression, and education. Books are our tools–we teach with them, we learn with them, we play with them, we create with them, we make love with them, and sometimes, we must fight with them.”

Interference Archive’s Book Bloc! exhibit features shields made here in New York by CUNY and Cooper Union students in their current struggles against tuition increases and instituting tuition, respectively, and in assertion of “free education for all.”