University and Society
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University and Society

Interdependencies and Exchange

Edited by Ágnes Kövér and Gaby Franger

What role can the university play in the broader community or society in which it is embedded? Must it remain segregated in the halls of science and knowledge, which tower above the community? This book examines the growing number of questions and concerns around university-community relations by exploring widely accepted theories and practices and placing them under new light.
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Chapter 14: University Residence Flora Tristán: a social project of experiences that breaks down walls

Juan Blanco López, M. Ana Almirón, Alfonso Blázquez, Angela Fernández, Maria del Carmen Maguilla and Silvia de la Herrán

Abstract

University Residence Flora Tristán is a social center of Pablo de Olavide University of Sevilla, situated in a stigmatized neighborhood. The Residence facilitates the integration of the students into the neighborhood, sharing experiences, collaborating with its organizations and supporting the integration and social cohesion. The simple fact that the Residence was constructed transformed and redefined the public space and led to a revitalization of the territory, both economically and symbolically. Students live in the Residence by committing to participate in actions inside and outside the Residence. Some of the student residents receive scholarships, and in return, together with a professional team and the community, they develop activities according to the needs and wishes formulated by the community: educational and communitarian projects. The forms of collaboration between young university students and the community create important learning processes for all involved about realities that were beforehand completely distant from constructive joint action.

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