Workers, Football, Neighbourhood

Workers, Football, Neighbourhood: Schalke between Tradition and Re-Invention

Project description online
In 2018, the last coal mine in the Ruhr area closed. This transition away from historical industries, which once enriched both the region and the state has created structural instability. The former working class neighbourhoods require re-evaluation in their current state. Stakeholders of Schalke are ambitious and in need of renewed development in social and cultural activities which will unify the community. Sport and the predominance of the Schalke 04 football club is for this reason worth investigation.
Schalke FC was formed and grown amongst the working class of Gelsenkirchen. From the coal mines to the international stage, the prominence of the football corporation has transcended the original grounds and neighbourhood of Schalke-Nord. The neighbourhood currently exhibits the highest rates of child poverty in Germany and an overall life quality judged as the lowest among 401 evaluated cities in the country.
Having undertaken an exploratory phase which included interviews, tours, observation and academic research, the group identified four (4) key topics. The topics consider urban mobility, public spaces, means for invigorating employment opportunities, and the contribution of football to local identity in the historically rich central neighbourhood of Schalke. The intention behind the research is a multi-faceted and collaborative effort, which will create both enriched understanding of the current conditions and of the potential opportunities.

Final report