However, this brings us to the third level: that of politics itself. 2013 has been called ‘the year of the protest’. The political crisis seems to roll like a wave across the world, often with a direct or indirect link to the physical environment. From the protests against the construction on Gezi Park in Taksim Square, Istanbul, to the protests against the increasingly expensive public facilities in the context of mega projects like the World Cup in Brazil, to the riots in the modernist residential areas of Stockholm, there is an epidemic of exploding public frustration and large-scale projects are often the symbol of an autocratic, insensitive, ineffective government. In Sweden’s case, the riots highlighted the fact that the government has allowed immigrants to become isolated in remote mega-structures where no native-born Swede dares to tread, and where daily life is more heavily affected by diminishing welfare benefits. Even the Arab Spring of 2011 now appears to be back in Tahrir Square in Cairo, where the population called for the resignation of a corrupt and violent new government by occupying a public square; protestors even created an environment to support a months-long protest, complete with amenities such as doctors, libraries, restaurants and sleeping areas. It is also clear that the western Occupy movement exhibits a tendency to unify these events, and while Occupy is anti-capitalist and slightly anarchic, the movements in the Arab states and Malaysia are actually fighting for an open market, the right to entrepreneurship and fair democratic government. For the most part, the riots in Sweden, London and Paris lacked a political agenda, while the protests in Brazil and Istanbul can be seen as the revolt of an intellectual middle class, and thus lie somewhere between the Arab Spring and the Occupy movement. Despite their differences, however, we can see the many protests and riots as part of a global phenomenon of political crisis, and we see the clear emergence of a global language and methodology of protest. In addition, the themes of democracy, local self-determination, civic society, bottom-up, participatory and temporarily autonomous places of protest and community have become a shared international phenomenon. Tahrir Square, Syntagma Square in Athens and Gezi Park have become part of us all, and now form a spatial-political international reference. But the most important lesson from half a decade of protests in the wake of the financial and political crises, is that democracy, civic society and participation can no longer in a culturally relativistic manner be put down as Western obsessions, with no meaning in the east or south—an argument often used by Western architects with major projects in autocratic countries in Asia or the Middle East. The political crisis and the resulting transformation to a new system is also a theme that we share, nuanced, of course, by totally different intensities and historical backgrounds.