I am a social-economic geographer with a strong interest in analysing the trends and dynamics between culture, tourism and spatial development processes, using an interdisciplinary approach and perspective. I work as ad. lecturer at the Department of Planning and Regional Development of the University of Thessaly and at the post-graduate programme in Cultural Management at the Open University in Greece. I have collaborated with various transnational research projects and EU initiatives (URBACT, ESPON, Interreg, etc) and I am especially interested in area based collaborations between different actors. Among other themes I have worked on temporary use of empty buildings, artist-led bottom up initiatives and neigbourhood development.
I follow an interdisciplinary approach drawing on social entrepreneurship, cultural development, place marketing and branding, urban tourism, etc. I have worked as an advisor for public bodies (Municipalities, Regional Authorities, City Tourism Offices, etc.) on matters of policy, funding, tendering practices, entrepreneurship, change management etc. and I am familiar with funding practices. The last years I have been organizing consultation processes with stakeholders' representatives on temporary use of empty buildings, neigbourhood development strategies, local cultural policies, etc.
Placemaking for innovation
Re-use of Empty Buildings
I have been collaborating with various organizations (universities, URBACT, local government actors, citizens' groups, etc), therefore I can provide info and insights about several issues deriving from this experience, from participatory decision making processes (e.g. through the URBACT method) to social impact assessment and measurement, overtourism, etc. Small scale developments and interventions within a building complex or an area is one of the themes I have worked with a lot.
Refill is an URBACT project which is promoting the idea of temporary use: the use of vacant buildings and land by urban pioneers, entrepreneurs and bottom-up initiatives, often resulting in facing various societal challenges and in creating possibilities for social innovation. All partners- Ghent, Riga, Bremen, Athens, Poznan, Amersfoort, Ostrava, Helsinki, Cluj and Nantes - experimented with temporary use and each partner developed local instruments to support the concept. In Athens this led to a coherent strategy called Polis2. The Municipal Market of Kypseli as a testing place for temporary use is considered as a key building for Refill Athens
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