Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

No 2011/10: Urban Design in Neighbourhood Commodification

Ana Mafalda adureira ()
Additional contact information
Ana Mafalda adureira: CIRCLE, Lund University, Postal: CIRCLE, Lund University, PO Box 117, SE-22100 Lund, Sweden

Abstract: The intention to promote local economic development through place marketing and urban design based interventions is linked to the commodification of the city, a trend emerging parallel to a new milieu for intercity competition. The aim with this paper is to highlight how urban design is used as a tool by the municipality to sell the city as a place to live, work and invest in. The focus is on the physical characteristics and function of two urban renewal projects and how the municipality has looked into these neighbourhoods in connection to the image that it wants to promote for the city. The analysis focuses on official plans and documentation, and on expert interviews. It distinguishes between product-oriented and process-oriented interventions. The reabilitation of the physical space is used to promote discourses on sustainability, innovation and creativity and, throught these discourses, generate an appealing image for investments. The paper aims to contribute to the discussions on the transformation of the role of the urban design and planning in contexts of entrepreneurial urban governance, place-marketing strategies, and the neoliberalization of planning

Keywords: Urban design; entrepreneurial urban governance; Malmö; Sweden

JEL-codes: R58

30 pages, October 21, 2011

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