Research Brief

October 14, 2022

Applying a Decolonized Approach as the Foundation to Creating Accessible Smart City Design

two people view city from lookout point

By Evergreen

for the Community Solutions Network

A starting point to empower individuals to consider their own learning journey.

This brief suggests that the first step to creating open and accessible spaces for all peoples is to consider how colonization shows up in urban design and how a decolonized approach creates space for more accessible processes and smarter city designs for all.

We also explore two specific examples of decolonized and Indigenized approaches and how they can be used in the design process to impact communities. Acknowledging that ‘one-size fits all’ will not work for all cities across Canada, we hope that readers will use this brief to consider their approaches to designing processes and how a shift in mind frames to notice colonial practices and intentionally engage in decolonized approaches can change systems.

Decolonization is as much a process as a goal. It requires a profound recentering on Indigenous worldviews. Decolonization is a dramatic reimagining of relationships with land, people and the state. Much of this requires study. It requires conversation. It is a practice; it is an unlearning.

Syed Hussan

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