Gabriella Gómez-Mont is the founder of Laboratorio para la Ciudad, the experimental arm / creative think tank of the Mexico City government, reporting to the Mayor. The Lab works across diverse areas, ranging from mobility, creative industries, governance, civic tech, etc. In addition, the Lab searches to create links between civil society and government, constantly shifting shape to accommodate multidisciplinary collaborations. Besides her fascination with all things city, Gabriella is also a journalist, visual artist, a director of documentary films, as well as a creative advisor to several universities and companies. She has been awarded several international recognitions for her work in different fields, such as the first prize in both the Audi Urban Future Award and the Best Art Practice Award given by the Italian government, as well as the TED City 2.0 Prize, among others. She is also a TED Senior Fellow, an MIT Director´s Fellow, a Yale World Fellow, an Institute for the Future Fellow, and a World Cities Summit Young Leader.
On Creative Governance and Political Imagination: Notes from the Megalopolis
This presentation reflects upon my three years heading the creative arm of the Mexico City government, reporting to the Mayor. It focuses on our need to keep on revising our modernist view of our city, especially when thinking of the role of government in contemporary society; about the importance of inventing new political languages and urban forms: a creative ethos beyond arts and culture and let loose into the city; other disciplines and conceptual frameworks that could (and should) inform city-making; new civic skills and actors that are necessary if we are to take seriously the new governance paradigms and jargon (co-creation, public participation, place making, urban commons etc) and reflections of whet we are calling “legible policy”, very much informed by insights from cultural studies. I will also exemplify with practical “experiments” and case-studies from Mexico City, dealing with things such as mobility and health, and why it has been important for the Lab to have many artists and creative-types working hand in hand with policy experts to figure out different ways to solve the challenges of a megalopolis.