International Development Policy Revue internationale de politique de développement, Vol 8, (pp. 164-188). Q1 in Development Studies and in European Studies
Publication year: 2017

The article examines recent social mobilisations against the planning and building of towers in Tel Aviv to address ongoing debates over the impact of social activism on the neoliberalization of urban development in times of neoliberalism’s “legitimation crisis.” Contrary to binary views of “neoliberalism vs. resistance” prevalent in scholarly debates, we look into the uneven ways in which urban mobilisations are conditioned by local configurations of neo-liberalisation, and how, in their turn, they affect neoliberal practices as they oscillate between resistance and integration. Based on empirical analysis, we argue that while recent mobilisations introduced novel claims and tactics against the institutional methods and decisions that produce urban space, and succeeded in politicizing towers as the flagship of neoliberal urban development, their actions have been re- inserted in the deepening neo-liberalisation of the city. Our findings raise broader insights about the ways in which neo-liberalisation processes sit inside society and not above it, as they shape the actors concerned, their positions, and their visions of development.