This paper is an empirical analysis of employment centres in the Los Angeles region from 1997 to 2014. Most extant work on employment centres focuses on identification methodology or their dynamics during a period of industrial restructuring from 1980 to 2000. We analyse employment centres using point-based, rather than census tract-based employment data and a non-parametric identification method with a single concept of proximity. We focus on changes across five key industries: knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS), retail, creative, industrial and high-tech, emphasising changes in centre composition as well as their boundaries. Results show far greater change across centres than previous longitudinal studies. Only 43% of the land area that is in an employment centre is part of one in both 1997 and 2014. Using a persistence score, centres range from stable to highly fluctuating, but emerging, persisting and dying centres are found in core and fringe areas alike. KIBS are most associated with stable centres, while high tech employment is attracted toward emerging areas and retail exists throughout. Emerging centres are more likely to have greater accessibility, while industrial employment becomes far more concentrated in centres by 2014.
The high property price syndrome in Hong Kong has led to heightened concern about the role of landed capital in property development. Recently, the hegemony of the real estate industry has become a buzzword in local literature, but unfortunately there is neither adequate theoretical articulation nor informed understanding of the concept of hegemony. There is widespread misunderstanding of hegemony, equating it to domination by property tycoons. The local literature has overlooked the government-business collusion in constructing the common sense of society so as to dominate others. Through an empirical investigation of the redevelopment of ‘Government/Institution or Community’ (G/IC) land in Hong Kong, this article attempts to offer an alternative explanation to the land question of G/IC redevelopment by highlighting that the everyday life of the silent majority and of professionals has in fact perpetuated the hegemony of the real estate industry in Hong Kong. It is argued that the government, property developers, professionals, charitable organisations and the general public have altogether participated, in different ways and to different extents, in the capital accumulation projects of leading developer conglomerates in Hong Kong. A land (re)development regime has thus contributed to the property boom in Hong Kong.
This article offers an explanation for the wide spatial variations in choice of insolvency route by personal debtors across local authorities in England and Wales. It is argued that formal bankruptcy has a more negative impact on social capital through stigma effects than the alternative of Individual Voluntary Arrangements. Consequently, spatial variations in choices are related to variations in social capital. The hypotheses derived from this approach are tested through the use of spatial econometric models utilising data from England and Wales. The results provide support for a positive link between variables related to social capital (age, mobility and home ownership) and choice of IVAs. It is argued that avoidance of stigma costs provides an explanation for the apparent paradox of the significant growth of IVAs despite their high cost to debtors compared to bankruptcy. Whilst there is only limited support for impacts directly related to the urban-rural environment, significant spatial interdependencies in choices across neighbouring areas are also uncovered.
The arts have long played a role in debates around gentrification and displacement, yet their roles and impacts as change agents are not clear-cut. According to the standard account, artists facilitate gentrification and ultimately engender the displacement of lower income households, but more recent research complicates the accepted narrative. This article seeks to untangle the relationship between the arts, gentrification and displacement through a statistical study of neighbourhood-level arts industry activity within large US regions. The findings indicate that the standard arts-led gentrification narrative is too generalised or simply no longer applicable to contemporary arts-gentrification processes. Rather, the arts have multiple, even conflicting relationships with gentrification and displacement that depend on context and type of art. These results have important implications for how we study the role of the arts in neighbourhood change and for how governments approach the arts and creative industries in urban policy.
Planners and policy makers are increasingly promoting biking and public transit as viable means of transportation. The integration of bicycling and transit has been acknowledged as a strategy to increase the mode share of bicycling and the efficiency of public transit by solving the first- and last-mile problem. However, the economic outcomes of jointly promoting neighbourhood bikeability and transit accessibility are still poorly understood. This study aims to assess the property value impact of neighbourhood bikeability, transit accessibility, and their synergistic effect by analysing the single-family and condominium property sale transactions during 2010–2012 in Austin, Texas, USA. Our Cliff-Ord spatial hedonic modelling approach, which is also known as the general spatial model (or SAC), controls for the spatial dependent effects in the sale price and the error terms simultaneously. In order to quantify neighbourhood bikeability and transit accessibility, we use Bike Score and Transit Score as publicly available indices. We have assessed how residents’ willingness to pay (WTP) for bikeability and transit accessibility depend on various socio-demographic and built-environment factors, and whether the WTP is influenced by the bicycle-transit synergy. The results from this research show that jointly enhancing bikeability and transit accessibility can generate positive synergistic effects on property values. The effects would behoove policy makers to pursue the coordination of bicycle master plans with regional transit plans and to consider strategies of spatially-joint bicycle and transit investment.
This article considers the function of friendship as a form of urban relation for young people living in working class areas of Australia’s multicultural capital cities. These neighbourhoods are characterised by very high diversity, significant socioeconomic disadvantage and large youth populations, and over the last five years many have received the largest influx of refugees and migrants of any Australian municipality. Against this backdrop, this article investigates the ways that sociality is produced amongst young people of many backgrounds who must constantly negotiate interethnic propinquity in their daily lives. It explores how young people create ways of being together beyond and beneath the imperatives of formal social cohesion initiatives to participate in harmonious community-making. It argues that everyday forms of convivial co-habitation are produced and regulated through friendship relations and networks that embed mix in daily life, and these can serve to recognise and manage, rather than eliminate, intensity, conflict and ambivalence. It suggests that such practices of sociality complicate mainstream policy endeavours, and can offer some important and hopeful ways to expand theorisation of social relations in the multicultural city.
The massive increases in women’s labour participation and the return of families with children to the city are often overlooked in understanding contemporary views on urban planning, despite decades of feminist urban theory. This article proposes to understand what is termed the ‘urban gender revolution’ through looking closely at the celebration of Jane Jacobs as the planning hero of the day. Zooming in on the city of Amsterdam, this article offers a case study of the popularity of Jane Jacobs to investigate the production of space for post-Fordist gender notions – genderfication – and to ask the question what new forms of exclusions are the result of this perhaps less sexist city (when compared to the modernist patriarchal ideal that Jacobs rallied against). In addition, it posits that the genderfication-project may help to overcome inequalities along gender lines; it underlines those along class lines.
Gentrification has often been linked to the spatial displacement of the marginalised, including prostitutes. However, in Germany, the legal spaces of prostitution are to a certain extent defensible, and gentrification processes often cover larger parts of inner cities, leaving little room for displacement. Using the example of prostitution in Frankfurt, this paper analyses how police make sense of and shape the shifting geographies of gentrification. It shows how spatial displacement is partially subsumed by two additional police strategies: intensifying attempts to discursively appease protesting citizens, and flexibilising the containment of prostitution in the inner city (e.g. by keeping street scenes on the move and lobbying for temporary brothel licenses).
Gay men have been implicated in neoliberal urban development strategies (e.g. the creative city) as a ‘canary’ population that forecasts growth. Paradoxically, both neoliberal re-development of North American inner-cities and the ways in which gay men become neoliberalised as individuals contribute to the dissolution of urban gay communities. In contrast to discourses of homonormativity, which suggest that gay men’s declining attachments to gay communities stem from new equalities and consequent desires to assimilate into the mainstream, this article argues that gay men in DC have internalised neoliberal discourses that call for career development, home ownership and social hypermobilities. The narratives of 24 gay-identified men living in DC indicate that the social and spatial dissolution of the gay community is linked with individual aspirations that are increasingly difficult to achieve. These aspirations include career advancement in a transient local economy, property ownership in an out-of-reach market, and the attainment of social status based on an ability to move through multiple neighbourhoods and venues with ease. As might be expected, African American and working class men are often left beyond the fray of these new neoliberal ideals.
Recent accounts of sexual commerce have drawn attention to the proliferation of online and sexual consumption. Yet the mediated exchange of sexual images and content folds into the spaces of the city in a variety of complex ways. Drawing on a variety of social science perspectives, this paper provides an introductory overview of a collection of papers exploring the changing contours of sexual consumption in the city and the distribution of sexual commerce across – and between – private, domestic and public, commercial spaces. Exploring the ways in which diverse LGBT and heterosexual identities are differently marketised, commodified and consumed, this introduction argues that over the last decade, contradictory moments of sexual emancipation and repression have changed where (and how) sexual consumption is visible in the city, shaping rights to the city in complex ways which need to be more thoroughly acknowledged in ‘mainstream’ urban studies.
In this article we aim to extend the literature on residential decisions and relocation in Chinese cities by explicitly incorporating cohort or generation differences in an event-history analysis of residential mobility in the City of Guangzhou over the period 2000–2012, using data from a survey conducted at the end of 2012. The results reveal not only substantially higher mobility propensities for young adults than middle-aged individuals and senior citizens, but significant differential effects of major determinants such as hukou, educational attainment, membership of the Chinese Communist Party and birth of a child and child rearing, on housing consumption and residential relocation across age cohorts. We argue that such differences in mobility behaviour are attributable, to a significant extent, to the vastly different life experiences of and housing opportunities available to different age cohorts.
Locational choices of creative workers have been a matter of heated debate over the last decade. This study proposes a micro perspective aimed at disentangling how the individual decision-making process behind locational choices is activated and develops over time. To this aim, we combine previous geographic research on the issue with research on the role of organisational factors in workers’ attraction and retention. Empirically, we carried out an exploratory case study of dancers in a renowned contemporary ballet company based in Reggio Emilia, Italy. With this study, we highlight how matching professional quests and organisation-specific job opportunities activates locational choices, and we extend geographical approaches to embeddedness by considering the role of organisations as crucial mediating entities between the city context and creative workers.
This paper looks into the European Capital of Culture (ECoC) programme as a leading example of culture-led regeneration intervention aimed at renewing or diversifying the economic base and positioning of host cities. One of the key claims associated with the programme is that it can transform the ‘image’ of a city. These image transformation claims are often supported by evidence of heightened or more positive media coverage in the short term. However, little evidence has generally been gathered to determine long-term, sustained image change. The paper seeks to at least partly address this lacuna by presenting evidence on the media representation of Glasgow and Liverpool over three decades. These two cities are widely perceived to be paradigmatic not only of successful culture-led regeneration but also of the power of the ECoC title to transform city image. The paper looks at the importance of the media narrative arc surrounding major cultural events in solidifying ‘image change’ processes, regardless of the existence of evidence to suggest a change in perceptions by local communities at the time the event is taking place. The core argument is that if media coverage about a particular place shows a significant change in focus and attitude over time, is voluminous enough and cuts across geographical and journalistic variations, then it effectively becomes a key source of evidence of de facto image change. The key proposition in this paper is that evidenceable and sustained change in media representations of place can be taken as tantamount to image change. This is based on the assumption that widespread and longitudinal trends in media representation have the capacity to both reflect and influence public attitudes and perceptions.
This paper examines the relationship between smart growth policies and other social and physical characteristics and the supply of multifamily housing units in 202 core-based metropolitan statistical areas (CBSAs) in the USA. Data for this study were gathered from the GeoLytics Neighborhood Change Database for the 1980, 1990, 2000 and 2010 US Census. The smart growth characteristics of each CBSA are determined by a smart growth index and a catalogue of urban containment rankings, while other social and physical characteristics are obtained from the US Census. This allows us to examine potential differences in development patterns between CBSAs with varying levels of sprawl and growth containment policies. Two regression models are used to determine statistically significant relationships between multifamily development patterns and growth management policies, as well as other social and physical characteristics. The results indicate that high levels of sprawl are associated with relatively fewer multifamily units, especially in suburban areas. In addition, several population demographics that may potentially benefit from multifamily units, such as senior citizens, the population in poverty and smaller households, are less likely to live in areas with higher rates of multifamily units. These findings indicate that planners and policymakers should consider the needs of more diverse communities when planning for housing, especially in suburban areas, where housing diversity is constricted.
We examined the relationships between individuals’ life satisfaction and individual-, household- and neighbourhood-level characteristics and evidence for cross-level interactions. We used data on individuals’ life satisfaction and a range of individual- and household-level characteristics from the Hong Kong Panel Study of Social Dynamics (2011) with linkage to neighbourhood-level aggregated data extracted from the 2011 census. The neighbourhood-level variables included the poverty rate and four factors derived from factor analysis based on 21 variables. Multilevel models were used to allow for the hierarchical nature of the data. Most of the variance in life satisfaction could be explained by individual- and household-level characteristics. Neighbourhood-level characteristics accounted for a small proportion (around 5% or less) of the variance. Most of the individual- and household-level characteristics studied were associated with life satisfaction. Life satisfaction was negatively associated with local poverty rate and three neighbourhood factors (deprivation, social fragmentation and ageing). There was evidence of cross-level interactions. For example, the level of life satisfaction decreased with an increasing neighbourhood poverty rate among individuals who did not receive Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA), but CSSA recipients had a higher level of life satisfaction in areas with higher poverty rates. The negative effect of neighbourhood poverty on life satisfaction was more marked in individuals who rented or owned their homes than in those who lived in public housing. Our results have implications for urban policies that may improve life satisfaction such as financial and housing support for high risk individuals.
Friendship is increasingly drawing attention as a concept used to explain the variety of ways in which migrants develop and sustain local and transnational relations. The advantage of this approach is its focus on social capital and those ‘sustaining and inspirational aspects’ of friendship that contribute to shaping different aspects of mobile individuals’ lives (Conradson and Latham, 2005: 301), instead of interpreting migrant sociality and urban conviviality in super-diverse conditions in terms of ethnic communities. At the same time, the focus on friendship suggests the contingent and nuanced character of these close social ties. Drawing upon an ethnographic case study of a group of young Russian-speaking migrants from post-Soviet countries and their social relationships in a London bar, this article explores the role of friendship in a migrant group located within a particular physical and social space. The place served as an important social junction, and its Russian-speaking network of bartenders and regulars was a source of friendly support and empowerment for its members, helping them confront feelings of marginality. However, close and intimate ties were also at times connected with power relations, reflecting social divisions and the reinforcement of ethnic/national stereotypes regarding those excluded from this social network. This article highlights that friendship encompasses a diverse and dynamic range of inclusionary and exclusionary practices, and discusses how migrant sociality can be negotiated through these practices.
This study mainly addresses two main questions: (1) whether traffic congestion negatively affects single-family house price by constraining accessibility to jobs; (2) whether congestion effects and accessibility effects vary by income groups within a metropolitan area. This study uses a multilevel hedonic price model to estimate the marginal price of accessibility while controlling for other neighbourhood attributes and the correlation of proximal housing sales. The congestion effects are identified by comparing the implicit price of accessibility between congested-flow and free-flow. The results show that the accessibility measured with congested time yields higher marginal price, suggesting that households are willing to pay more to avoid locations with high congestion delays and accessibility loss. The results also suggest that accessibility effects are more valued by homebuyers in middle-income neighbourhoods, compared with those in the lowest or highest income neighbourhoods.
This study expands on the tax competition literature by incorporating the heterogeneity of resource endowments into the tax competition framework. It theoretically elaborates that the local distribution of resource endowments affects both the level of tax rate and the degree of spatial dependence in tax competition, and empirically confirms the theory using the data for 60 urban municipalities in the Seoul metropolitan area (SMA), Korea in the years 2004–2006. A spatial panel model for tax cut confirms the presence of tax competition in the SMA and the effects on tax cut of the resource endowment distribution. Another regression model for local indicators of spatial dependence uncovers the fact that the spatial dependence in tax cut is also determined by the local endowment distribution.
Several Asian countries have established savings and loan programs called housing provident funds, which comprise of a voluntary or mandatory savings account and eligibility for discounted mortgage loans. This study evaluates the impact of a mandatory housing provident fund in China on home ownership using the China Health and Nutrition Survey from 1989 to 2009. The empirical results indicate that households enrolled in the program were more likely to own a home since the housing provident fund loans became available in 1998, and such difference was fully explained by the length of the enrolment history which was related to the housing provident fund loan benefits by program design. The success of the housing provident fund was in part attributable to its program designs that feature behavioural economics theories, such as automatic enrolment, mental accounting, and self-discipline. The empirical findings have implications for designing effective housing policies to promote home ownership.
Over the past several decades, more and more social activities happen in places which are privately owned. Scholars have called these properties ‘mass private property’ (MPP): the private properties that are open to the mass. However, while MPP arouses scholars’ attention and interest, there is not a clear understanding of what type of physical space is a ‘mass private property’. Rather, the concept of MPP is usually used in an intuitive and taken-for-granted way without examining the ideal essences of diverse MPP spaces. This essay clarifies the criteria by developing the ideal type of MPP. Although MPPs are diverse, to some extent they should share the ideal-typing features of real-estate, legal and sociological dimensions.
In this study, we analysed the factors that disrupt the healthy eating habits of the elderly in a suburban city centre in Japan. It was estimated that 49% of the elderly residents in the study area, many of whom were concentrated in the city centre, had poor nutritional condition. Our multilevel analysis indicated that weak ties with family and the local community had a strong effect on a large proportion of the nutritionally depleted elderly residents. Previously, the issue of food deserts was considered to be mainly a problem that affected areas where small neighbourhood shopping areas had closed, thereby making shopping physically difficult for people without private cars. However, our study shows that reduced intimacy in people’s relationships also increases the risk of the presence of food deserts.
As the first installment of a two-part article exploring contemporary transformations in metropolitan governance in the wake of the entrepreneurial turns of the 1980s and subsequent waves of neoliberalisation and financialisation, a case is outlined here for a ‘conjunctural’ approach to urban analysis. This can be considered to be complementary to, but at the same time distinct from, some of the concurrent approaches to comparative urbanism, in that it explicitly problematises the relative positioning of cities in the context of uneven development and multiscalar relations, as well as the dialogic connections between case studies, midlevel concepts and revisable theory claims. Taking as its point of departure the current financial and political crisis in Atlantic City, the New Jersey casino capital, the article historicises the concept of the entrepreneurial city, placing this in the context, successively, of the evolving ‘commonsense’ of neoliberal governance, the emergence of austerity urbanism and the intensification of financialised restructuring. In tracing an arc from more abstract theory claims through to the specific circumstances of contemporary urban restructuring in the United States, the article sets the stage for the more granular and concrete analysis of ‘late-entrepreneurial’ Atlantic City to follow in Part 2. To the extent that it is necessary to construct some of this staging, this first part of the article reflects on some of the methodological implications of a conjunctural approach to urban studies.
This paper examines recent transformations in consumer landscapes and leisure spaces in inner-city LGBT neighbourhoods in Sydney, Australia and Toronto, Canada. In doing so, we rethink orthodox positions on neoliberalism and homonormativity by considering practices of sociability and commensality. We contend that closer attention to interactions between mainstream and LGBT consumers is key to understanding these urban changes. Mainstream-LGBT interactions encompass both congruent and competing practices, actualised in both physical encounters in consumer landscapes and discursive reputations of those spaces. These relations are increasingly important owing to the progressive integration of LGBT neighbourhoods into urban cultures and economies. Simultaneously, the materialisation of diverse LGBT landscapes in Sydney and Toronto has generated a relational geography of ‘traditional’ gay villages and ‘emergent’ queer-friendly neighbourhoods. We argue that practices and spaces of leisure-based consumption are emerging in different forms across these neighbourhoods and between Sydney and Toronto. To illustrate this, we deploy a discourse analysis of mainstream newspaper articles on LGBT neighbourhoods over 2004–2014, supplemented by relevant LGBT press releases in Toronto, focusing on the use, meaning and social significance of leisure-based consumption sites – clubs, bars, cafés, restaurants. We find the balance of daytime/night-time leisure spaces, which have both social and material affordances, is a key discriminator across the neighbourhoods, both within and between the cities. Daytime consumer landscapes are more often framed as sociable and inclusive within the media, while night-time landscapes are perceived as divisive.
Cities and their respective regions must weigh the merits of hosting major sport events, including the Olympic Games. This paper presents a contingent valuation method estimate of the monetary value of intangible benefits to Germans of hosting the Olympic Summer Games. In a nationwide online survey, 6977 respondents said whether they would support a referendum to host the Games. The survey employed a payment card format containing monthly tax amounts to elicit individual willingness-to-pay for the Games over a five-year period. In the weighted sample, 26% expressed an average willingness-to-pay of 51. Willingness-to-pay varied widely across regions. Around Cologne, the average willingness-to-pay was 100. Interval data hurdle models reveal that policy consequentiality and various intangible benefits increased willingness-to-pay. Aggregate willingness-to-pay over a five-year period amounted to 46 billion which exceeded the estimated costs of the 2024 Summer Games for Hamburg. The findings have implications for policy makers since they show what regions within Germany most support hosting the Games.
This paper explores the politics of diversity planning in one of Europe’s most socially and economically divided and globally oriented cities: London. The analysis draws on Latour’s writings on modes of politicisation to examine the processes and practices that shape contemporary urban governance. It uses the example of diversity planning to examine the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of urban politics. It shows that on the one hand diversity is represented in pragmatic, consensual and celebratory terms. Under prevailing conditions of contemporary global capitalism, the ‘what’ of diversity has been politicised into an agenda for labour market-building and the attraction of ‘talented’ individuals and foreign investment. However, at the same time this celebratory rhetoric represents part of a wider effort to deflect political attention away from the socially and economically divisive impacts of global models of economic growth and physical development. There is little discussion of the ways in which planning frameworks, the ‘how’ of diversity policy, are helping to generate new separations in and beyond the city. Moreover, despite claiming that policy is pragmatic and non-ideological, the paper shows how diversity narratives have become an integral part of broader political projects to orientate the city’s economy towards the needs of a relatively small cluster of powerful economic sectors. The paper concludes with reflections on the recent impacts of the vote for Brexit and the election of an openly Muslim London Mayor. It also assesses the broader relevance of a Latourian framework for the analysis of contemporary urban politics.
Commercial forms of sex such as prostitution/sex work, strip clubs and even sex shops have been the subject of much political debate and policy regulation over the last decade or so in the UK and Ireland. These myriad forms of commercial sex and land usage have managed to survive and even thrive in the face of public outcry and regulation. Despite being part of the UK we suggest that Northern Ireland has steered its own regulatory course, whereby the consumption of commercial sexual spaces and services have been the subject of intense moral and legal oversight in ways that are not apparent in other UK regions. Nevertheless, in spite of this we also argue that the context of Northern Ireland may provide some lessons for the ways that religious values and moral reasoning can influence debates on commercial sex elsewhere.
Cityscapes comprise intense repositories for socio-economic interactions, including those surrounding medicinal products. This raises issues of pharmaceuticalisation, involving the construction of a range of human conditions as targets for pharmaceutical interventions. Employing the metaphoric figure of the flâneur, we traverse the New Zealand cityscape, interrogating the mediation and emplacement of various medicinal products within thoroughfares, commercial sites and domestic dwellings. We demonstrate the pharmaceuticalised commodification of the city and interpolation of urbanites as citizen-consumers.
Bidding for proximity to a good school can lead to a pattern of spatial distribution in which households with similar socio-economic status and willingness-to-pay for school quality cluster together. In this paper, we adopt a three-level hierarchical framework using residential house prices in Orange County, California, in 2001 and 2011, to estimate how much homebuyers pay for school quality. Our data show that, during this period, the Academic Performance Index (API) scores of elementary schools in Orange County increased by 16.4% yet converged while the house prices rose by 50.3%. The variation in house prices attributed to school district boundaries was at the same level in both years, but the variation in the API scores shrank. Using a hierarchical random effects model, our estimation results show that, on average, a 10% increase in the API raised the house prices by 1.9% in 2001 and by 3.4% in 2011. Ten years apart, a one standard deviation increase in school quality in the sample increased house prices by a surprisingly similar percentage: 2.7% in 2001, and 2.6% in 2011, respectively. Our findings also reveal that, in both years, there was a significant spatial heterogeneity of school premiums in house prices across school districts. This research provides a spatial understanding of the education capitalisation effects and sheds light on the effectiveness of urban education policy.
Immigrant populations are a major driver of growth in many US metropolitan areas, and considerable research has focused on the effects of immigrant populations on neighbourhood outcomes. However, much of this research is based on data from 1990 or earlier, prior to substantial growth in the diversity of the immigrant population and to changes in immigrants’ US settlement patterns. This research uses tract-level data from the 2000 Decennial Census and the 2009–2013 American Community Survey to explore the relationship between an existing immigrant population and future changes in neighbourhood characteristics within the 100 largest US metropolitan areas. Spatial regression models are used to identify the neighbourhood features that predict future proportional growth in a neighbourhood’s foreign-born population. In addition, the associations between a neighbourhood’s initial foreign-born concentration and future neighbourhood relative income and population growth are investigated. Consistent with previous work, our results indicate that foreign-born populations of all races tend to move towards existing immigrant population clusters. All of the immigrant minority racial groups are also attracted to neighbourhoods with existing same-race US-born populations. Overall proportional population growth is positively associated with the initial presence of the white and Asian immigrant population; black and Hispanic immigrant concentrations are associated with proportional population loss. While immigrants do not contribute to neighbourhood relative income growth, a greater presence of immigrants – relative to their US-born co-racial group – is associated with lower rates of neighbourhood relative income decline.
This paper studies the mechanisms linking urbanisation and industrial SO2 emissions using panel data that enable us to trace the environmental impact of the urban transformation of China’s economy from a rural to a largely urban society. We provide evidence of stylised facts on spatial patterns and temporal changes of industrial SO2 emissions in China. Over time, industrial SO2 emissions show increasing levels in small and medium-sized cities but slightly decreasing levels in some large cities. The results show that urbanisation is one of the main driving forces behind emissions and the increase in the urbanisation level is likely to exacerbate emissions. Emissions are more sensitive to industrialisation than urbanisation, indicating that industrialisation remains a key industrial SO2 pollution contributor in China. Industrial emissions abatement policies in China should be designed by considering the spatial differences of emissions and the pace of urbanisation, although the increase of urbanisation is associated with benefits such as poverty reduction and economic growth. The reduction of industrial SO2 emissions requires coordinated approaches by adjusting the pace of urbanisation.
The new urbanism promotes preferred design and land use patterns as a means to enhance quality of life through socioeconomic diversity, but many criticise these assertions of causality. Deriving community indicators for social sustainability – including housing affordability and socioeconomic diversity – and from studies assessing new urbanism as an infill development tool, we examine the impact of new urbanism infill development in Parramore, an economically distressed inner city neighbourhood, and Baldwin Park, a brownfield inner-ring suburb, with comparative control neighbourhoods in Orlando, Florida. In Parramore, active new urbanism implementation, including HOPE VI and the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, reflect revitalisation efforts through increased socioeconomic diversity. Meanwhile, the Baldwin Park plan incorporates many new urbanist best practices. The findings from these two distinct cases of infill development indicate that the new urbanism does not necessarily ensure social sustainability, though these principles are often integrated into publicly funded revitalisation initiatives dedicated to doing so through mixed use and mixed income development.
This article explores two contrasting perspectives on the role of informal settlements in urban labour markets. One proposes that they help to lift households out of rural poverty and onto a path to prosperity through affordable access to urban opportunities. The other suggests that the debilitating conditions confine residents to enduring hardship and insecurity. South Africa is an important test case because of the extent of social and spatial inequalities, and the policy ambivalence towards shack settlements. Preliminary evidence indicates that employment rates are much closer to formal urban areas than to rural areas, but conditions of employment are noticeably worse. Other forms of data are required to assess the magnitude and timescale of economic progression for households.
This paper estimates average treatment effects and distributional and locational effects of the Favela-Bairro programme at the household level on direct outputs and on property values. Not surprisingly, households in treated neighbourhoods are better off in terms of the direct outputs delivered by the programme. However, in terms of property values, at the average level, the intervention was not translated on appreciation of housing values, suggesting that, without a land titling component, slum upgrading programmes do not have an effect on the value of dwellings. On the contrary, when estimating heterogeneous effects of the programme within treated neighbourhoods, the results suggest that appreciation of housing values is observed in properties with poor accessibility and low-value dwellings. These distributional and locational effects suggest that, although the average treatment effects on housing values are not significant, the programme was successful in decreasing inequality among slum dwellers, and reducing economic and spatial segregation within treated neighbourhoods.
As the 21st Century world assumes an increasingly urban landscape, the question of how definitive urban spaces are to be governed intensifies. At the heart of this debate lies a question about the degree and type of autonomy that towns and cities might have in shaping their economic, environmental, social and cultural geography. This paper aims to examine this question. Starting with the premise that the degree of autonomy any particular town or city has is inherently an empirical question – one which can only be conceptualised in relational terms vis-à-vis the distributed, networked and territorialised responsibilities and powers of the city and the nation-state and other zones of connection – we examine four different contexts where debates over autonomy have intensified in recent history (Brazil, UK, India and South Africa). Drawing on recent respective histories, we identify key elements and enablers in the making of urban autonomy: a characteristic that exists in a variety of guises and forms and creates a patchwork landscape of differentially powerful fragments. We reveal how, beyond its characteristic as a political ideal, autonomy surfaces as a practice that emerges from within specific sectors of particular societies and through their relationship with national and regional politics. Four alternative forms of urban autonomy are delineated: fragmented, coerced (or enclave), distributed and networked. We contend that the spatial templates for autonomy are not predetermined but can be enhanced in multiple different sites and forms of political space within the city. This enhancement appears essential for the integration and strengthening of capacities for sustainable and just forms of development throughout the urban.
In the aftermath of the recent recession, the percentage of households facing rent burden in the USA reached historically high levels, while cost burden for owners has shrunk. This study uses two panels from the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to compare the prevalence, distribution and household responses to the phenomenon of rent burden in the USA in the years immediately before and after the Great Recession. Results suggest that rent burden has become more prevalent after the recession and that income, household composition and location are major drivers of this phenomenon, both before and after the recession. Results also indicate that exiting rent burden was more difficult in the years after the recession and that an increasingly common coping mechanism for rent burdened households is to increase their household sizes. These results indicate that renters have experienced increased financial stress related to their housing. This finding is notable given the lack of policy responses that address hardship among renter households in contrast to the privileged status enjoyed by homeowners in the policy domain.
This study investigates an important but often overlooked problem – the interaction between parking and land use – to examine the effects of the built environment on car commuting. Using the case of Shenzhen, China, a structural equation model is employed to examine the tripartite relationship among the built environment, parking supply and car commuting. The parking–built environment relationship partly reflects the parking supply mechanism that is collectively influenced by the parking market and regulations. The results indicate that, because of the high cost of constructing parking, property developers are reluctant to build sufficient parking spaces for the residential population in densely built neighbourhoods with small lot sizes. However, minimum parking standards often lead to more parking provisions in dense central locations. Therefore, the benefits of compact land use and transit-oriented development (TOD) for reducing car use are either reinforced or offset depending on the various interrelationships between parking and the built environment. In the context of policy implications, a fine-grained urban fabric should be particularly supported, considering its significant effects in reducing car commuting, as well as its potential role in fostering a well-functioning parking market. Meanwhile, imposing parking caps in dense and central areas would be wise because parking oversupply encourages more car trips, which counteracts the sustainable merits of dense developments.
Financial constraints are thought to be making parental support an increasingly influential factor in the homeownership transitions of young Britons. This could inhibit social mobility, exacerbate the intergenerational transmission of wealth and deepen housing inequality. Although research shows that parental socio-economic advantage is associated with filial homeownership, less is known about whether these relationships are particularly pronounced in expensive housing markets where access to homeownership is often more constrained. This study tests this hypothesis by enriching the Office for National Statistics Longitudinal Study of England and Wales with data on local transactional house prices. Multilevel models indicate that disparities in the odds of homeownership between young adults with more and less socio-economically advantaged parents tend to deepen with increasing house prices. This pattern is most noticeable for women. However, parents and prices only intersect to greatly stratify the probability of homeownership when young adults’ circumstances are otherwise conducive to owning.
This article aims to explain the evolution of urban governance in Spain during the last 40 years as a product of different waves of state rescaling. Historical, political and economic specificities shape the evolution of Spanish urban governance, especially because of the recent process of democratic transition, regional decentralisation and the specific process of de-industrialisation. We distinguish three periods in urban governance trends, from the restoration of democracy in the late 1970s to the current austerity urbanism marked by the economic crisis starting in 2008. For each phase, we highlight the three interrelated factors explaining urban governance: (1) the evolution of the Spanish political economy in the transition from Fordism to post-Fordism; (2) the evolution of the welfare state; and (3) the role of urban social movements.
Concerns about global warming and growing scarcity of fossil fuels require substantial changes in energy consumption patterns and energy systems, as targeted by many countries around the world. One key element to achieve such transformation is to increase energy efficiency of the housing stock. In this context, it is frequently argued that private investments are too low in the light of the potential energy cost savings. However, heterogeneous incentives to invest in energy efficiency, especially for owner-occupants and landlords, may serve as one explanation. This is particularly important for countries with a large rental sector, like Germany. Nevertheless, previous literature largely focuses on the payoffs owner-occupants receive, leaving out the rental market. This paper addresses this gap by comparing the capitalisation of energy efficiency in selling prices and rents, for both types of residences. For this purpose data from the Berlin housing market are analysed using hedonic regressions. The estimations reveal that energy efficiency is well capitalised in apartment prices and rents. The comparison of implicit prices and the net present value of energy cost savings/rents reveals that investors anticipate future energy and house price movements reasonably. However, in the rental segment, the value of future energy cost savings exceeds tenants’ implicit willingness to pay by a factor of 2.5. This can either be interpreted as a result of market power of tenants, uncertainty in the rental relationship or the ‘landlord–tenant dilemma’.
This article analyses the governance arrangements underlying the regeneration process of a central area in Los Angeles from the 1970s until now. The Arts District is emblematic of this rising interest from developers in central places that were just 45 years ago either ‘no man’s land’ or illegally occupied by artists. The analysis applies three main governance models that have been used in contemporary research to explain urban regeneration processes – Private type; Bottom-up; and Consensus-building – to look at the following research question: Are these models sufficient to characterise regeneration processes in the network society context? Data for the analysis were collected through semi-structured interviews with social actors as well as from policy documents related to adaptive re-use. The main finding is that the governance arrangements during the main phase of the regeneration of the area do not fit with the governance models utilised for the analysis. A group of new entrepreneurs are active in re(scaling) processes: they use ‘spaceless’ interactions – professional networks at the national scale – to influence the evolution of the area. The ANT framework is used to analyse why and how these networks play in the regeneration process. The innovative regeneration process is like a ‘translation’ process where professional networks play an important role in ‘enrolling actors’ but also in ‘circulating the translation’, thus establishing this regeneration model at the national scale in America.
Grounded in the interpretive tradition, this paper applies the theory of New State Space (NSS) to China’s city regionalism. We argue that in the NSS effort in China, planning discourses enable a regulatory framework to be applied at the level of city region. City regionalism corresponds to the conceptualisation of NSS in two dimensions. First, the rise of the city region gives rise to a new territorial form of state administration. Second, the city region is made to be the most appropriate scale encapsulating capital–labour relationship (CLR). This study uses NSS to examine the regional strategic development plans (RSDPs) of the Pearl River Delta Region and presents two primary arguments based on an interpretation of the Outline of the Plan for the Reform and Development of the Pearl River Delta (2008–2020) (OPRDPRD) and the preliminary actions of various levels of government based on it. First, RSDPs serve as effective regulatory tools that not only enable new state administration articulating regulatory responsibility throughout the various levels of governmental hierarchy, but also elaborate the CLR in the interest of regional based industrial development, infrastructure construction, and formulation of social policies. Second, the city region has become a site for political rhetoric and related actions whereby regulatory order is unfolding in order to itself effect an economic restructuring and political reshuffle. Creating a city region is ‘planning ideological’ and solving problems is difficult because of the asymmetric jurisdictional power relations between municipalities.
Life satisfaction and motives for moving home are complex entanglements, reflecting multiple desires and experiences. The aim of this paper is to show that a focused analysis of satisfaction with particular life domains can prove that changing a place of residence is not only a life stressor, but also a positive means leading to enduring improvements in individual satisfaction. Using the British Household Panel Survey we examine overall life satisfaction and satisfaction in various life domains such as housing, job, social life, household income, spouse/partner and health, both prior to and after moving. A temporal pattern of movers’ satisfaction for a number of years before and after the move is derived employing a fixed-effects panel data model. Our results reveal that residential relocation increases housing satisfaction considerably. The positive effect of moving on housing satisfaction is much stronger and endures longer for those with a sustained desire to relocate ahead of movement. Despite some decrease over time, five years after moving survey respondents still had significantly higher housing satisfaction than before their move. Changes in satisfaction with other life domains are much less pronounced and no lasting improvements in satisfaction are observed for them.
In this paper, the heterogeneity of the Paris apartment market is addressed. For this purpose, quantile regression is applied – with market segmentation based on price deciles – and the hedonic price of housing attributes is computed for various price segments of the market. The approach is applied to a major data set managed by the Paris region notary office (Chambre des Notaires d’Île de France), which consists of approximately 156,000 transactions over the 2000–2006 period. Although spatial econometric methods could not be applied owing to the unavailability of geocodes, spatial dependence effects are shown to be adequately accounted for through an array of 80 location dummy variables. The findings suggest that the relative hedonic prices of several housing attributes differ significantly among deciles. In particular, the elasticity coefficient of the apartment size variable, which is 1.09 for the cheapest units, is down to 1.03 for the most expensive ones. The unit floor level, the number of indoor parking slots, as well as several neighbourhood attributes and location dummies all exhibit substantial implicit price fluctuations among deciles. Finally, the lower the apartment price, the higher the potential for price appreciation over time. While enhancing our understanding of the complex market dynamics that underlie residential choices in a major metropolis such as Paris, this research provides empirical evidence that the QR approach adequately captures heterogeneity among house price ranges, which simultaneously applies to housing stock, historical construct and social fabric.
In the past decades, when São Paulo became the national manufacturing centre, it has experienced great population growth. Since then, many housing problems have emerged. In addition, the difficulties that inner cities face in attracting jobs and maintaining economic activities are particularly challenging. Indeed, even if many cities have successfully regenerated their central areas, the so-called inner city problem is still very much alive in the case of São Paulo. As a result although the city centre has abundant urban infrastructure it still has plenty of vacant spaces, including residential buildings. One could say that São Paulo’s city centre is characterised by a large number of empty spaces in an area that is simultaneously crowded with buildings and urban facilities. This paper intends to contribute to the empirical analysis of the determinants of vacancy rates, with a particular focus on historical city centres, using São Paulo Metropolitan Area as our case study. Our empirical analysis relies on district-level data for the years 2000 and 2010, and combines standard spatial econometric methods with hedonic modelling. Our results suggest that there are three main groups of determinants: individual buildings characteristics, mobility of households and neighbourhood quality. We find evidence that the historic central city is a distinctive submarket, needing special urban policies. Its determinants work differently when compared with the housing markets of other areas across the city.
The Chinese central government introduced the ‘Chinese Green Building Label’ in 2008, which makes China one of the few developing countries with an official rating system of buildings’ performance in sustainability. This paper investigates the existence and magnitude of the price premium associated with this official green label in the residential sector. Based on a unique data set of green-labelled, newly built housing projects and their non-labelled counterparts from around the country in 2013, an empirical analysis suggests that the labelled housing projects attract a price premium of 6.9% compared with their non-labelled counterparts. Further analysis suggests that this official green label is more effective as a reliable signal of buildings’ energy efficiency in the Chinese context compared with developers’ self-advertised ‘greenness’. These results provide preliminary evidence that with this official rating system, the investment in buildings’ energy-efficiency could be potentially profitable for housing developers in China, and such profitability may herald a rapid development of the green housing market in urban China.
In this paper we propose a household sorting model for the 50 largest US metropolitan regions and evaluate the model using 2010 Census data. To approximate residential locations for household cohorts, we specify a Cohort Location Model (CLM) built upon two principle assumptions about housing consumption and metropolitan development/land use patterns. According to our model, the expected distance from the household’s residential location to the city centre(s) increases with the age of the householder (as a proxy for changes in housing career over life span). The CLM provides a flexible housing-based explanation for household sorting patterns in US metropolitan regions. Results from our analysis on US metropolitan regions show that households headed by individuals under the age of 35 are the most common cohort in centrally located areas. We also found that households over 35 are most prevalent in peripheral locations, but their sorting was not statistically different across space.
The tertiarisation, or perhaps more accurately, the deindustrialisation of the economy has left deep scars on cities. It is evident not only in the industrial wastelands and empty factory buildings, but also in the income and social structures of cities. Industrialisation, collective wage setting, and the welfare state led to a stark reduction in income differences over the course of the 20th century. Conversely, deindustrialisation and the shift to tertiary sectors could result in increasing wage differentiation. Moreover, numerous studies on global cities, the dual city, and divided cities have also identified income polarisation as a central phenomenon in the development of major cities. Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), we find an increasing polarisation of household income structures since the mid-1990s. In urban agglomerations, this income polarisation is even more pronounced than in the more rural regions. The income polarisation in Germany is likely to have multiple causes, some of which are directly linked to policies such as the deregulation of the labour market. But extensive deindustrialisation is probably also one of the drivers of this process, and it has directly weakened Germany’s middle-income groups.
Compliance with laws and regulations intended to protect common pool resources in the urban context is essential in tackling problems such as pollution and congestion. A high level of non-compliance necessitates investigation into motivations behind compliance. The long-held instrumental theory emphasising the dependence of compliance on tangible deterrence measures fails to adequately explain empirical findings. More recently established compliance models incorporate normative, instrumental and image factors as motivations for compliance. We investigate the importance of normative and image motivations for transportation policy compliance, and the influence of the hukou (China’s household registration) on the composition of motivations. Through a case study of Shanghai’s license auction policy to inhibit car growth, we use a structural equation model and data from a survey (n = 1389) of policy attitudes and compliance behaviour. The results show that both locals and migrants comply because of instrumental motivation. However, for locals, normative and image motivations not only influence compliance but do so to a greater degree than instrumental motivations. This stands in stark contrast with the fact that there was no statistical relationship between normative and image motivations and compliance for migrants. The significant contribution of normative and image motivations to compliance in locals bears positive implications for compliance, but the absence of that in migrants is worrying. If only instrumental motivations matter, then the government is really constrained in how it can go about keeping social order. Compliance obtained strictly through social control indicates an unsustainable state of governance.
This paper demonstrates the contribution that historical property records can make to our understanding of long run urban change. We use a case study of two streets from the suburb of Carlton in Melbourne, Australia between 1870 and 1970. The property records form a panel database that can be interrogated using standard modelling techniques. These data are used to analyse change in the built environment over time, and identify the factors that may be influencing such change. With the assembled data we track built form, land value, ownership and land use over 100 years. We find that stability characterises the built environment over lengthy periods, but when change occurs it does so in bursts, rather than incrementally. Furthermore, these bursts of change are unevenly spread across our two case study streets, despite their proximity. The streetscape’s primary built material is the key factor shaping geographical patterns of land use change in the case study area.
Urban neighbourhoods are defined as much by their commercial character as their residential; retail services not only provide material needs for those living nearby, but less-tangible social and cultural capital as well. It is reasonable to expect, then, that excessive churn in these businesses can threaten the stability of a neighbourhood. Using a longitudinal data set on mixed-use neighbourhoods in New York City, we test whether or not neighbourhoods of varying circumstances and characteristics experience different degrees and types of retail turnover. Results suggest that there are meaningful differences in retail turnover across neighbourhoods. Retail turnover is directly associated with the type of business activity, commercial infrastructure and the neighbourhood’s consumer profile. However, when all three sets of factors are considered simultaneously in a regression analysis, consumer-related characteristics explain turnover more than those related to the local commercial environment. Specifically, businesses that provide necessity and more frequently consumed goods/services are more stable and chain establishments are more likely to venture into markets with some housing price discounts, growth potential and possibly less organised opposition. Neighbourhoods with less (and more heterogeneous) general retail (as opposed to food service) concentration, as well as bigger businesses, are more stable. More importantly, bigger households and higher shares of white residents are most strongly associated with less retail churn, and population growth is the strongest predictor of more turnover.
US manufacturing policies increasingly steer resources toward the act of innovation. Emerging case-study evidence suggests that this innovation leads to manufacturing job growth. However, the case-study evidence from which this claim is assembled is incomplete and selective. Using regional-level industry-occupation data for US manufacturing sectors, we test the contribution of manufacturing innovation activities to production employment growth within US regions, for the 2000–2006 and 2006–2010 periods. While production employment continued to disperse from sites of historical manufacturing concentration over both time periods, innovation activities provided some advantages. From 2000 to 2006, regions with higher innovation concentrations in high-tech and medium–low technology industries, experienced slower rates of production employment decline. From 2006 to 2010, a period spanning the Great Recession, innovation activities were associated with reduced production job losses for industries of all technology levels. These results indicate that innovation has benefits beyond high-technology industries, but that those benefits are limited and selective.
This paper describes how Dubai’s top-down redevelopment strategy affected residents of Sha’biyat Al Defaa’ and Sha’biyat Al Shorta, or Army and Police Colony, a densely aging Dubai neighbourhood. The article draws on an original ethnographic case study, including field observation, interviews with residents and local press reports. Findings show that redevelopment demolished this old neighbourhood to appeal to economic elites without making any effort to preserve any of its social, economic or emotional value to residents or the larger community. In doing so, Dubai sacrificed the wellbeing of a vulnerable population. I draw on the concept of place attachment to interpret this case’s significance for planning and preservation theory and practice. Place attachment conceptualises affective ties to both physical settings and the relationships and memories that such settings support. This study gives planners, policy makers and preservationists new evidence that attachment to land and community are important motivations for expanding historic preservation into concerns for community preservation. Conventionally, historic preservation concerns itself primarily with built landscapes; this paper argues that individuals’ feelings and bonds to social settings can be used as engines for preservation. The paper concludes that Dubai’s top-down planning model does not sensitively capture the needs of low-income communities. It argues that in advocating preservation and mitigating displacement impacts, city planners must pressure the state and developers for more affordable housing policies and projects, and must establish service programmes that provide technical and economic assistance to city residents who face eviction.
Land is an important tool for local governments to attract investments and promote local economic growth in China. Based on panel data of Chinese prefecture-level cities from 2003 to 2012, this paper employs spatial panel data models to examine the strategic interaction among local governments in industrial land supply and to indentify its possible sources. The empirical results show that there exists strategic interaction among local governments in industrial land leasing price. Local governments’ industrial land leasing price is significantly impacted by the action of neighbouring cities. They mimic each other – in terms of industrial land leasing price to attract outside investments. Empirical evidence reveals that the strategic interaction comes from both yardstick competition and resource flow effects. Local governments react more to their neighbours’ industrial land leasing price during political cycle periods.
As visions of smart urbanism gain traction around the world, it is crucial that we question the benefits that an increasingly technologised urbanity promise. It is not about the technology, but bettering peoples’ lives, insist smart city advocates. In this paper, I question the progressive potential of the smart city drawing on the case of Singapore’s Smart Nation initiative. Using the case studies of the smart home and ‘learning to code’ movement, I highlight the limits of such ‘smart’ interventions as they are stunted by the neoliberal-developmental logics of the state, thereby facilitating authoritarian consolidation in Singapore. As such, this paper distinguishes itself from previous works on the neoliberal smart city by situated smart urbanism within the socio-political dynamics of neoliberalism-as-developmental strategy. For smart urbanism to better peoples’ everyday lives, technological ‘solutionism’ needs to be replaced with more human-centric framings and understandings of urban challenges.
Predictions in recent studies that an increasingly large number of households will locate near rail stations because of changing lifestyles and perceptions of younger generations should be a reason for concern for transportation planners as excessively high demand for housing near stations can displace disadvantaged populations. In New Jersey, where the statewide Transit Village programme was introduced in 1999 to promote transit-oriented developments (TOD), many communities with rail stations are currently inhabited by low-income and minority populations. While gentrification through TODs can have many environmental and economic benefits, caution is needed to ensure that it does not displace disadvantaged households. With this assertion, the study sets benchmarks for current population characteristics of the areas near commuter rail stations in New Jersey and compares changes of the characteristics between 1990 and 2013 by using the Geolytics Neighborhood Change Database. Specifically, it compares the socioeconomic characteristics of the areas near stations with the areas further both at the macro and the micro levels by focusing on race, ethnicity, income, rent and other key variables. The study uses analysis of variance and regression models to compare areas near stations with areas beyond. Although the regression models showed higher home value and greater increase in home value near stations than areas further, change in rent has been more stable. The analysis did not reveal significant undesirable changes in population characteristics in the areas near stations, especially for the variables on race and ethnicity.
Social scientists have long shown great interest in the spatial correlates of crime patterns. A subset of the literature has focused on how micro-level spatial factors influence the formation of crime hot spots. At the same time, tangential research has highlighted how neighbourhood disadvantage influences crime occurrence. The current study focuses on the intersection of these perspectives through a spatial analysis of Motor Vehicle Theft (MVT) and Motor Vehicle Recovery (MVR) in Colorado Springs, CO. We begin by conducting a Risk Terrain Modelling analysis to identify spatial risk factors significantly related to MVT and MVR occurrence. We then test whether the spatial influences of the criminogenic risk factors differ across traditional measures of neighbourhood disadvantage. Findings suggest that while a citywide effect is evident for multiple risk factors, their spatial influence on crime significantly varies across neighbourhood contexts.
Using crime data for the 48 continental and conterminous US states and the distribution dynamics approach, this paper detects two distinct phases in the evolution of the property crime distribution: a period of strong convergence (1971–1980) is followed by a tendency towards divergence and bimodality (1981–2010). Moreover, the analysis reveals that differences in income per capita and police can explain the emergence of a bimodal shape in the distribution of property crime: in fact, after conditioning on these variables, the bimodality completely disappears. This empirical evidence is consistent with the predictions of a two-region model, that stresses the importance of income inequality in determining the dynamics of the property crime distribution.
This paper explores some of the hitherto under-researched intersections between urban (re)development, urban planning and visual culture. What emerges is an academic context that, to date, has largely compartmentalised discrete literatures on ‘view’, ‘value of the view’ and cityscape change, (re)imagineering and (re)scripting). It shows how materialising processes associated with the commodification of a panoramic view in politico-economic and cultural terms can be used to transform and regenerate along neoliberal lines. It demonstrates how panoramas, when treated as a commodity within the context of neoliberal capitalism, are appropriated, (re)imagined and (re)scripted by architects and property developers to create high status, residential and commercial space for an affluent élite. As such, panoramas are a mechanism for the acceleration of capital accumulation that inherently create new and reinforce existing spatial inequalities. This study draws on research into the commodification of the view of the historic city of Valletta in the redevelopment of Tigné Point, the largest, most comprehensive regeneration scheme in Malta in recent years.
Scant research exists on the patterns of changes in older women’s housing, and whether and when women transition into residential aged care (RAC). This study aimed to identify groups of women with different housing patterns (latent classes) over time, with a secondary aim to describe socio-demographic and health characteristics of women in each class. We analysed linked data for 9575 women born 1921–1926 from the Australian Longitudinal Study of Women’s Health (ALSWH), Australian National Death Index, and Residential Aged Care (RAC) administrative records for the years 1999 through to 2011. Seven distinct housing patterns (classes) were identified over time. Four classes showed a stable pattern: living in a house for most surveys (47.0%), living in a house but with earlier death (13.7%), living in an apartment (12.8%), living in a retirement village (5.8%). One class showed a pattern of downsizing: moving from a house to retirement village (6.6%). Two patterns showed transition: from an apartment or retirement village, to RAC and death (7.8%), and from house to RAC (6.4%). This study provides new evidence about socio-demographic and health influences on housing patterns and entry into residential care in later life. These findings can inform policy and aged care planning for women in later life, by identifying patterns of transition into residential aged care, or alternatively, remaining in the community.
This paper examines in light of the Coase Theorem how delineation of a degree of enforceable rights for a previously open-access dumpsite in the Philippines would affect market transactions of waste pickers. It shows that a simplistic exclusion solution was not enough to constrain rent dissipation of recyclables in the primeval land fill. Some intervention of non-government organisations backed by some initial government assistance were found helpful in reducing transaction costs to sustain operations and promote innovations and initiatives from the scavengers themselves despite obvious external economic difficulties.
Accessible space is a necessary component of urban protest. Little research, however, has examined the spatial evolution of protest activity over time. Much of the existing research emphasises the legal right to protest, however, less effort has been made to examine how micro-contexts may facilitate or impede dissent. This research focuses on how the built environment of cities can serve as either attractors or detractors of protest using a unique geocoded sample of 6217 protest events taking place in New York City between 1960 and 2006. I use a spatial count model to examine the relationship between the built environment and protest intensity. The results point to significant shifts in where protests have occurred over time. Protests become increasingly spatially concentrated, with a disproportionate amount of activism taking place on or in close proximity to privately owned public spaces. Spaces in close proximity to powerful organisational or institutional targets also experience heightened protest activity. Overall, I show that the built environment, and the social relationships creating it, powerfully influence where dissent occurs. This is consistent with the advent of neoliberal policies directing urban spatial restructuring, which have brought about a process of structural funnelling for protest, ultimately making events more likely to occur in spaces that are hostile to mobilisation.
This paper explores the changing spatiality of the sex retail industry in England and Wales, from highly regulated male-orientated sex shops, pushed to the legislative margins of the city and social respectability, towards the emergence of unregulated female-orientated ‘erotic boutiques’ located visibly in city centres. This is achieved through an exploration of the oppositional binaries of perceptions of sex shops as dark, dirty, male-orientated, and ‘seedy’ and erotic boutiques as light, female-orientated and stylish, showing how such discourses are embedded in the physical space, design and marketing of the stores and the products sold within them. More specifically, the paper analyses how female-orientated sex stores utilise light, colour and design to create an ‘upscaling’ of sexual consumerism and reflects on what the emergence of up-scale female spaces for sexual consumption in the central city might mean in terms of theorisations of the intersectionality between agency, power, gender and class. The paper thus considers how the shifting packaging and presentation of sex-product consumption in the contemporary city alters both its acceptability and visibility.
This paper explores the complex intersections between place, friendship networks and encounters, and the development and negotiation of ‘translocal subjectivities’ for student-migrants living in Melbourne, Australia. Drawing on qualitative research with student-migrants of various nationalities, the paper explores how student-migrants narrate encounters with friends and the formation of different friendship networks in relation to place at two significant stages of their migration journey: during initial arrival and ‘settling in’ in Melbourne, and during return visits to their hometowns and cities. This analysis uses the concept of ‘translocal subjectivities’ (Conradson and Mckay (2007) to highlight how encounters with friends shape senses of self that are both multiply located and transformed through transnational mobility; and how specific urban localities, materialities and social practices are involved in the negotiation of the ‘translocal’ self.
The direction and mechanisms of the relationship between airport traffic volumes and property prices are somewhat unclear in the literature. This study adds to that body of knowledge by empirically investigating the role of airports as an essential driver of economic activity by creating employment and facilitating air travel between destinations. The two-stage least-squares (2SLS) approach is employed to investigate the link between house prices and the airport traffic volumes of New Zealand’s three key regions and airports (Auckland, Canterbury/Christchurch and Wellington) from July 2004 to December 2014. The empirical findings of the study suggest that airport traffic volumes positively and significantly influence the urban house prices of New Zealand’s three major regions.
Taking one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Barcelona as a paradigmatic case, the aim of this paper is to explore the ways in which contestation organised by sublocal grassroots movements in the context of the current urban crisis operates, both in terms of content and form of protest. Our thesis is that resident mobilisation in the neighbourhood of Ciutat Meridiana is expressive of a new cycle of (urban) social mobilisations in Spanish cities. In such mobilisations, more or less spontaneous initiatives which emerged to counteract the effects of the crisis at the community level are simultaneously serving as platforms for reciprocity and political contestation. Establishing a dialogue with the literature on social innovation, in this paper we claim that these micro-local urban practices are linked to broader social movements and thus play a fundamental role in the political empowerment of citizens living in highly segregated and vulnerable urban areas.
This article argues that the creative drive of cultural workers to envision alternative urban futures and to make real changes in neighbourhoods in the urban present, while politically powerful and imaginatively seductive to urban decision-makers, contains destructive impulses. Such a drive can challenge, but also reinforce, the established social order and unequal power relations. This article critically examines the spatial politics of creative destruction that can unfold in the place-making wake of cultural workers. A case study is used from the mid-sized, industrial city of Hamilton of a deprived inner-city neighbourhood that is informally being reimagined as an arts district. In this neighbourhood, some cultural workers selectively practice middle-class disaffiliation. Individual acts of avoidance, control and destruction function as withdrawal strategies to help minimise the negative externalities of crime and social disorder and to realise a vision of this neighbourhood in their own image.
After several decades, an increasing number of European cities have been experiencing population growth after a longer phase of decline. This new growth represents not just a quantitative phenomenon but also has qualitative implications for the urban space and the built environment. A juxtaposition of re- and de-densification, as well as changes in land use, in the form of a small-scale spatial mosaic, can be observed. A crucial factor for estimating the relationship between the built environment and demand for it is population density. Increasing population densities may put pressure on sustaining a certain quality of life and on ecological recovery spaces. In this vein, an indicator concept for re- and de-densification will be applied to the city of Leipzig, one of the most illustrative examples of a regrowing city, in order to shed light on the complex relationship between changing human housing demands and their impact on land use. The concept involves measuring population density. Our study has demonstrated that, although similar density changes can be observed in different periods in different parts of the city, they are dominated by different drivers, leading to the formation of different spatial patterns. The results of our study emphasise that regrowth should be understood as a distinctive process because it is distributed very heterogeneously within the city area, with a variety of spatial effects and impacts. The concept allows us to draw conclusions about processes that mitigate, drive or reinforce regrowth, and therefore contributes to a better understanding of this phenomenon and its implications for land use.
In cities of the Global South, access to land is a pressing concern. Typically neither states nor markets provide suitable land for all users, especially low-income households. In the context of urban growth and inequality, acute competition for land and the regulatory failures of states often result in conflict, which is sometimes violent, affecting urban authorities and residents. Conflicts are often mentioned in analyses of urban land, but rarely examined in depth. This paper develops a framework for land conflict analysis, drawing on relevant literature and the papers in this special issue. In order to explore the drivers, dynamics and outcomes of urban land conflicts, diverse disciplinary perspectives are discussed, including environmental security, political ecology, legal anthropology, land governance, conflict analysis and management, and urban conflict and violence. The papers focus on conflicts in the peri-urban areas of Xalapa, Mexico, and Juba, South Sudan, and during informal settlement upgrading in eThekwini (Durban), South Africa, and Nairobi. A second paper on South Africa examines how current tenure law reflects the characteristics and outcomes of previous conflicts. We suggest that an analytical framework needs, first, to consider definitional categories, including the material and emotional dimensions of access to land, conflict and violence, and tenure. Second, it needs to identify and examine the interests and behaviour of the many actors involved in urban land conflicts. And third, it needs to analyse the interactions and relationships between those involved at different levels, from the individual/household, through the local to the citywide, national and international.
The article examines the local and regional economic impacts of NHS spending. The research is set in the context of tensions between buying economies, process efficiencies and local economic development impacts of public sector procurement, and contributes to the evidence base on supplier proximity and income retention at the local and regional level. The scale, scope and spatial distribution of NHS spending in a South Wales case are analysed using detailed purchasing information provided by a local health board. The article then uses an economic modelling framework to quantify the supply chain impacts of this spending to determine the full regional economic impacts of operational and capital expenditures. The analysis shows that NHS Wales spending supports significant levels of regional economic activity in terms of output, employment and gross value-added. The article also explores scenarios on the potential economic significance of import substitution of selected purchases. The implications of the changing procurement environment, with new EU directives, and a reorganisation of procurement functions within NHS Wales, are explored, and suggestions are made for further research.
China’s reconfiguration of the state and the market in its reform era has created new spaces and opportunities that have attracted millions of rural migrants to urban centres in search of freedom, wealth and new identities. However, the new space and the self both remain constricted by post-socialist parameters and the market. Based on ethnographic research on the male sex industry in post-socialist China (2004–2014), this article studies one such group of the rural-to-urban migrant population, namely male sex workers, or ‘money boys’ in the local parlance. Building on existing migration and prostitution literatures in China and my previous work, this article examines the ways they become money boys and manage three stigmatised identities – rural-to-urban migrant, men who sell sex and men who have sex with men – in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. This article concludes that money boys represent a group of the new migrant generation with distinct needs and desires, which is simultaneously embedded in the neoliberal discourse of development and empowerment, and at risk of dislocation and isolation.
There is a pressing need to estimate the magnitude and dynamics of the behavioural effects of transportation investments and policy. This article innovates by applying an experimental-control group research design to the case of new light rail transit service in Los Angeles, California. Only a handful of previous studies use an experimental design to assess impacts of light rail transit, and this is the first to use an experimental design to measure impacts on vehicle miles travelled, a key determinant of greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector. We administered an annual seven-day travel study to a panel of households in the vicinity of Los Angeles’ Expo light rail line before the 2012 start of rail service and twice after the line opened. We find that households living within walking distance (1 km) of the new light rail drove approximately 10 fewer miles per day relative to control households farther away. Rail transit trips among near-station households approximately tripled relative to households beyond walking distance. Such driving reductions among households within walking distance of new rail transit stations suggest that Los Angeles’ large rail transit investment, coupled with land use policy, has the potential to help achieve climate change policy goals. More broadly, experimental evaluation can provide insights into causality and patterns of travel behaviour change associated with planning policies.
This paper explores the ambivalent nature of community organisation as a response to a ‘crisis of authority’ in post-industrial areas subject to urban regeneration. In the discourse of the Third Way, activism has been increasingly discursively framed as ‘participation’, legitimising a shift in welfare provision from the state onto civil society and a proliferation of private actors. As part of the process, existing local solidarities based on long-term shared interests and histories of conflict with the parts of the state, have been transformed (in theory) into social networks, forms of short-term instrumental co-operation based on consensus. Community activists are brought into contact with what Rose (after Foucault) describes as the ‘technologies’ of power which are deployed to produce governable subjects, co-opting and dividing them from their base communities. However, local participation also provides our most immediate experience of political economy, what Gramsci identifies as a sometimes fierce sense of difference, and the practical, historically acquired local knowledge, or ‘good sense’ which can form the basis of a challenge to hegemonic thinking. Engaging empirically with local organisers in the East Midlands, I conclude that the potential of this as a source of contestation depends on two dimensions of practice: (1) the development by activists of a critical understanding of how to foster or maintain long-term collective interests, identity and practices within their communities and (2) maintaining a clear sense of separation from the state which allows power to be confronted.
Cities are increasingly seeking to learn from experiences elsewhere when planning programmes of sustainable transition management, and the contingencies of policy-learning arrangements in this field are beginning to receive greater attention. This paper applies insights from the field of policy mobilities to the burgeoning field of transition management to critically explore a proposed ‘learning relationship’ between Berlin (Germany) and Manchester (UK) around cycling policy. Drawing on qualitative data, the paper casts doubt over the existing consensus attributing recent growth in bicycle use in Berlin to concerted governmental interventions. A multi-actor analysis suggests that contextual factors caused the growth in cycling and that policy has been largely reactive. The emergence and circulation of the Berlin cycling renaissance as a policy model is then traced through policy documents and interviews with actors in Manchester, UK, to understand why and how it has become a model for action elsewhere. It is concluded that Berlin’s cycling renaissance has been simplified and mobilised to demonstrate the requisite ambition and proficiency to secure competitive funds for sustainable urban transport. The paper develops an original study of the role policy knowledge and learning play in sustainable urban transition management, and argues that attending to the dynamics of policy learning can enhance our understanding of its successes and failures.
Recent work on world city networks, urban polycentricity and megapolitan urban forms share an interest in the economic functionality of inter-city linkages. The intersection of these bodies of literature is in the often overlooked defining features of megalopolitan forms – their being the ‘hub’ that links national to international urban systems and the ‘incubator’ within national urban systems (Gottmann, 1976). With this intersection in mind, this paper measures the functional polycentricity of China’s Yangtze River Delta Region (YRDR) at different geographical scales from an intercity knowledge collaboration perspective. The paper uses data on co-publications as an indicator of knowledge linkages between cities within and beyond this megalopolis. The YRDR can be seen as functionally polycentric at the megapolitan scale but this functional polycentricity decreases with increases in the geographical scale at which interurban linkages are considered. Furthermore, a multi-scalar analysis of functional polycentricity helps identify the hub role of Shanghai. The results show that Shanghai’s knowledge hub role is currently present at the national scale. It may take some time for Shanghai to become a knowledge hub at the global scale given its not-so-strong international links and relatively weak local links. The paper concludes with some suggestions for future research agendas.
This article questions the strict parallelism of demographic and economic development in characterising urban shrinkage in Germany. As the cases of several Ruhr cities and East German cities prove, urban economic growth can be achieved thanks to the substantial presence of modern industries and business services, and despite declines in population size. Serious shrinkages of Halle, Cottbus and Schwerin are primarily due to failures in the post-industrial transformation process. Recent policy measures strongly oriented towards slowing the downsizing process of population (via e.g. urban regeneration strategies) do not appear to be sufficient for achieving urban resurgence in these cities. More active industrial policy measures are required there to create a competitive high-tech manufacturing sector, to stimulate innovation activities and to boost its growth interdependence with modern local services and R&D infrastructure.
The fall of the socialist system in the late 1980s determined major changes in the economy of former socialist countries. These changes affected especially the mono industrial cities. Even after privatisation, the industrial sector remained in restructuring and decline, often leading to the closure of factories. Structural or functional conversion processes have been delayed and on the site of former factories remain many abandoned places, which were neglected by the authorities. These areas influence both the natural and socio-economic environment: from local community to potential investors. Since the brownfield areas were not given much attention, this paper contributes to a correct definition, identification and presentation of such sites and the main barriers that hinder their redevelopment. For the case study, two mono industrial cities from two neighbouring former socialist countries (Romania and Serbia) were analysed. The object of the study was the comparison of the redevelopment solutions applied so far with their impact on socio-economic environment and the plans for future development.
This paper explores the socialities of everyday urban walking. The paper begins from the starting contention that a wide range of social and cultural theory, urban planning and transport literatures position walking as a practice that unproblematically encourages ‘social mixing’, ‘community cohesion’ and ‘social interaction’. Through the analysis of in-depth interview and diary data from research on urban walking in London, this paper engages with a series of underexamined questions. What, for example, is the nature of social interactions on foot? Who are they with, what initiates them and how do they unfold? How do these interactions relate to how we understand the relationship between walking and urban space? Attention is drawn to verbal and non-verbal interactions of strangers as they walk and to the significance of the practical accomplishment of walking together. However, an examination of the discursive organisation of diary and interview data extends existing work concerning the practical organisation of everyday pedestrian mobilities by considering the significance of participants’ accounts of their walking experiences. This analytic move foregrounds a counterposition to dominant discourses surrounding everyday walking practices that is situated in the context of broader concerns with everyday urban politics and the ‘right to the city’. This approach contributes to a clearer engagement with the socialities of urban walking whilst raising important questions concerning the ways in which particular walking discourses inform urban scholarship. The paper concludes that in the promotion of walking as a form of low-carbon active travel greater account should be taken of pedestrian encounters.
Whilst attention has previously focused on the importance of monolithic ethnic identities on migrant place-making, less attention has been paid to how place-making proceeds in super-diverse urban neighbourhoods where no single ethnic group predominates. This paper makes an original contribution by identifying the factors that shape migrants’ affinity with, or alienation from, super-diverse neighbourhoods. Through using and critiquing an analytical framework developed by Gill (2010) that identifies ‘ideal’ and ‘pathological’ place-making strategies, the paper contrasts two super-diverse neighbourhoods in the UK with different histories of diversity. We show how ‘ideal’ migrant place-making is more likely to occur where there is a common neighbourhood identity based around diversity, difference and/or newness, and where those with ‘visible’ differences can blend in. In contrast, ‘pathologies’ are more likely where the ongoing churn of newcomers, coupled with the speed and recency of change, undermine migrants’ affinity with place and where the diversity of the neighbourhood is not yet embedded. Even where neighbourhood identity based on diversity is established, it may alienate less visible migrants and culminate in a new form of (minority) white flight.
What is possible if Dayton became a city that intentionally welcomed immigrants? This question was the starting point for a community conversation about the wellbeing of and outreach toward immigrants in a midsize city in southwest Ohio – the City of Dayton. This paper examines the processes employed to support the emergence of an immigrant-welcoming initiative now called ‘Welcome Dayton’. Early conversations resulted in a formal plan, written by the community and endorsed by city commissioners, which realigned and crystallised local priorities, sparking a wide spectrum of efforts aimed at becoming a welcoming city. Using qualitative methods, primarily participant observation, we identified practices of creating spaces where both long-time residents and recent immigrants come together in a way that recognises and reveals the value of each participant’s perspectives and ideas. Herein we examine the practices of creating and sustaining Welcome Dayton, paying particular attention to the role of recognition in generating ‘resourcefulness’ in the community.
The purpose of this paper is to shed light on English housing associations’ asset management strategies through an analysis of strategic decisions to either dispose of or retain valuable property assets. Drawing on the concept of institutional logics and the use of organisational archetypes, the paper identifies contrasting strategies that London-based housing associations have adopted in response to contemporary challenges. The first, classified as ‘defender’ organisations, represent those who choose to generally retain their stock to leverage finance for future house building and who, in principle, would not countenance property sales. Second, are organisations described as ‘analysers’ who offer pragmatic justifications for the disposal of properties, primarily on economic grounds, arguing that properties are no longer fit for purpose, with proceeds used for replacement stock. The last category represents those depicted as ‘prospectors’ who willingly dispose of their high-valued assets to generate stronger income streams and reposition themselves as institutional entrepreneurs within the housing sector. The paper argues that the strategic decisions taken by these ‘prospector’ housing associations have shaped an agenda, founded on institutional entrepreneurship, to which other organisations are forced to respond. In wider terms, the cumulative effects of selling valuable assets carry the risk of not only undermining core social principles but also potentially exacerbating socio-spatial segregation across the London area.
This paper explores the changing geography of ethnic inequality in England and Wales drawing on data from the 2001 and 2011 censuses. Specifically, we use the 2011 Office for National Statistics (ONS) area classification to examine how ethnic inequalities within local areas with different demographic and socio-economic characteristics have changed over time. Local ethnic inequalities are examined through a set of indicators which capture differences in housing, health, employment and education between ethnic minority groups and the White British in local authority districts in England and Wales. The results suggest that ethnic inequalities are widespread and persistent, and highlight the different ways in which inequalities manifest for particular ethnic groups in different localities. Ethnic inequality in housing and employment is severe for most ethnic minority groups, particularly in large urban areas that have been traditional settlement areas for ethnic minorities. However, inequalities increased most over the decade 2001–2011 in rural and coastal areas that have low ethnic diversity levels and small ethnic minority populations. The paper considers these findings in relation to theories of service provision and racism, ethnic density, and immigrant adaptation.
Cemeteries are typical urban fixtures occupying a vast portion – at least 0.5% – of municipal territories. However, urban economists have generally neglected this topic to date. Our paper establishes the main determinants of pricing for burial plots, excluding columbaria. We analyse the prices proposed by 185 cemeteries from 42 large French cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants. We use a specified Ln-Ln hedonistic model. Our results highlight the complexity of cities’ pricing, as these strategies imply the combination of several determinants, such as the main features of the burial concessions (term, surface area, location within the boundaries of the cemetery, etc.), the environment defined within and outside the cemetery (type of cemetery, cemetery’s surface area, existence of verdant areas, etc.) and various other urban features (population structure, real estate prices, purchasing power).
During the Great Recession in the US, there were distinct housing and labour markets that were particularly hard hit. This was primarily due to the fact that the housing industry had fueled much of the recent economic growth. This article takes advantage of the shock to the construction industry to investigate the responses of Latino immigrants in metropolitan areas that were most heavily concentrated with Latino immigrants in the construction industry. As expected, there were large declines in the proportion of the Latino immigrant population that was working in the construction industry during the recession. There were some shifts of employment in the industry after the recession, but the biggest change was in the number of unemployed. While declines in construction jobs did predict moving out of a metropolitan area, decline in the overall job market had a larger impact on mobility. Finally, we find evidence that those who moved out of the metropolitan area were less likely to be employed, although it is not possible to determine whether they would have been employed in their previous location.
Since the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, China’s urban development policies have experienced dramatic changes, from anti-urbanisation before 1978, to anti-large-city-development during 1978–1999 and coordinated urbanisation in 2000–2012. Using city-level data from 1949 to 2012, this paper examines China’s development policies and city size distribution. Evidenced by the Zipf coefficient, we found that China’s city sizes became more evenly distributed before 2000, and this pattern was reversed after 2000. These findings suggest that China’s urban system is strongly affected by its shifting urban development strategies.
In this study, we introduce an integrated framework for managing the complex interdependence between urban infrastructures and the socioeconomic environment within which it evolves, in pursuit of sustainable and environmentally cleaner urban living. The framework addresses the nature of individual preferences for more sustainable urban infrastructures, and how we can use this knowledge to improve urban form in ways that reduce environmental impacts. Using metropolitan Atlanta as a case study, we developed a survey that focuses on the preferences of Atlanta residents for low-impact development (LID) and transit-oriented development (TOD), with responses collected on the Mechanical Turk crowed-source platform. Using these responses we developed a latent-class residential community choice model for four distinctive classes of respondents that revealed heterogeneous preferences for community amenities. Next, we integrated the results of these individual choices into an agent-based market diffusion model, to predict land-use pattern, and to explore policies that drive greater adoption of more compact development. Finally, we used the results of this data collection and modelling to estimate the carbon emission reduction potentials from more compact development driven by LID and TOD. In the future, we will continuously refine the steps and address the issues including survey sample bias to make the framework more reliable and useful for sustainable urban infrastructure planning, design and implementation.
This paper offers insights into production of vernacular architectural heritage that result from disruption caused by disaster such as a flood in a city. To understand the complexities surrounding vernacular heritage, this paper proposes a conceptual approach derived from Lefebvre’s theory of production of space constituting the triad of spatial practice, representation of spaces and representational space. The strength of this approach in explaining resilience and vernacular architectural heritage is illustrated by examining rehabilitation settlements that evolved after the devastating floods of 1961 in Pune (a city with a population of 4.5 million). The paper focuses on the rehabilitation process that was undertaken in response to the floods and relies on secondary data and primary field observations in the rehabilitated settlements. It was found that these settlements had twofold characteristics; externally, they directed the trajectory of growth and expansion of the city owing to their strategic location in the periphery around the old core, and internally within, they contributed to reshaping of urban form and vernacular architecture as the affected people reconstructed their houses and everyday lives. A significant contribution to the making of these rehabilitation spaces was the state’s provision of land for rehabilitation and encouragement to the mechanism of Cooperative Housing as a representation of space incorporating contemporary planning ideologies. These settlements comprised the ‘architecture of the dispossessed’ where material culture and imagery informed different and hybrid forms of houses but these were a departure from the past as they needed to accommodate rebuilding and expansion while serving aspirations of those affected.
This paper seeks to provide a conceptual framework in which to examine the social practices of contemporary austerity programmes in urban areas, including how these relate to different conceptions of crisis. Of current theoretical interest is the apparent ease with which these austerity measures have been accepted by urban governing agents. In order to advance these understandings we follow the recent post-structuralist discourse theory ‘logics’ approach of Glynos and Howarth (2007), focusing on the relationship between hegemony, political and social logics, and the subject whose identificatory practices are key to understanding the form, nature and stability of discursive settlements. In such thinking it is not only the formation of discourses and the mobilisation of rhetoric that are of interest, but also the manner in which the subjects of austerity identify with these. Through such an approach we examine the case of the regeneration/economic development and planning policy area in the city government of Birmingham (UK). In conclusion, we argue that the logics approach is a useful framework through which to examine how austerity has been uncontested in a city government, and the dynamics of acquiescence in relation to broader hegemonic discursive formations.
Debt played a central role in the Great Recession, both in its cause and in its resolution, and once again, concern is rising about household indebtedness. This paper examines the relationship between personal indebtedness and theft crime using information on personal debt default. This paper builds on an established literature examining economic conditions and community crime rates, with an analytical framework provided by ‘the market model of crime’. Our paper is motivated from the economic, sociology and criminology literatures, and extends to a fuller consideration of the relationship between economic hardship and theft crimes in an urban setting. In particular, the sociology and criminology literature permit a much deeper understanding of the human behaviour and motivations underpinning the relationships represented in the market model. Using data available at the neighbourhood level for London, UK on county court judgements (CCJs) granted against residents in each neighbourhood as our measure of personal indebtedness, we examine the relationship between this measure and a range of community characteristics, and the observed pattern of theft crimes using spatial econometric methods. Our results confirm that theft crimes in London follow a spatial process, and that personal indebtedness is positively associated with theft crimes in London. We identify a number of interesting results, for instance that there is variation in the impact of covariates across crime types, and that the covariates which are important in explaining the pattern of each crime type are largely stable across the period considered in this analysis.
This paper examines the variant roles that specific forms of networked-based social capital play in supporting the democratic functions of a neighbourhood governance network in Los Angeles. A significant body of empirical work has demonstrated the positive role that social capital plays in the functioning of civil society, but there has been less attention to the manner in which different types of network-based social capital promote support efficacy of multifaceted civic organisations. This paper utilises network measures from a survey of the members of a neighbourhood governance network in Los Angeles to explore the associations between types of network ties – within group; among groups; to different external stakeholders – and perceived self-efficacy of the member associations. We find that internal cohesion, or bonding social capital, promotes both advisement of city officials and promotion of local participation, suggesting that this network-based resource is fungible. Other network structures appear to have value in different contexts, in that stakeholder connections promote participation, while bridging social capital is associated with perceived success in advising city officials. The findings suggest that architects of participatory reform should be attentive to system goals in establishing supports for varying forms of system relationships.
Following scant evidence for the effects of proximity to rail transit on car use, we pinpoint the impacts of rail transit and neighbourhood characteristics on both transit and car use in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. We apply the structural equations modelling approach on 597 residents who moved into the Hiawatha Light Rail Transit (LRT) corridor after it opened. The analysis is based on a self-administrated survey where all attributes of the built environment and transit quality are perceived measures. Using a quasi-longitudinal design to compare the behaviour of movers into the Hiawatha and control corridors, we found that the Hiawatha LRT acts as both a catalyst and a magnet. Movers into the Hiawatha corridor experience transit improvement, which increases transit use and reduces car use. The LRT also enables transit-liking people who were unable to realise their preference previously to relocate near the LRT. However, the LRT has no significant effects on changes in car ownership.
This article proposes an alternative method to Markovian approaches through the housing systems analysis (ASHA) model. Its objective is to simulate the impact of the housing stock on population redistribution at a given scale and duration, by modelling the processes whereby residential mobilities are linked, initiated either by a change in the housing stock, or by a movement of housing releases that does not lead to a dwelling being occupied within the study area. The model takes into account the mobilities specific to each household category, in terms – for example – of social position, age, size or the dwelling occupied. It provides information on trends in the population structures of the different housing types brought about by vacancies-reoccupancies. The article begins by describing the model’s theoretical foundations (filtering process and housing vacancy chains) and conception. It then goes on to present, through the example of the city of Lille (Nord, France), a method of data classification that allows comparative analysis suited to the application of the ASHA model. Next, it illustrates the model’s analytical scope and the way it can be used to understand the organisation of a housing system. Finally, drawing on a number of examples (family accommodation, gentrification, housing programmes), it sets out the model’s operational utility and the way local managers can use it to understand and anticipate the impact of housing policy on the urban population.
Cities are often touted as climate change leaders in the USA and all cities across the country are affected by climate change, but little is known about climate action in politically conservative cities. Using document analysis and interviews, an in-depth case study of two cities in the conservative Dallas-Fort Worth region of Texas examines how public participation and cultural framing contribute to sustainability and climate change planning. One city successfully adopted sustainability plans, while the other city was unable to do so. Comparison of the two cases reveals that carefully designed public participation processes and locally relevant cultural frames can help cities educate residents, build support and expand discussion of sustainability. However, economic development, competition and political controversy prevent cities from addressing climate change explicitly or in meaningful ways, raising concerns about the capacity of cities to act as climate change leaders.
Urban sustainability transitions are journeys of transformative socio-technical change to set course for an envisioned future city. These journeys start out in the minds of change agents as vague conceptual images inspired by far-flung ideals, which are then further substantiated and articulated as ‘urban imaginaries’ – shared understandings of what constitutes a desirable future city. The conceptual contribution of this paper lies in demonstrating the power of the urban imaginaries notion to studying the process of envisioning in the context of sustainability transitions. By following a number of prolific Thai cycling campaigners through the streets of several cities in Thailand – focusing on the urban imaginaries they articulate – this paper shows how urban sustainability transitions are envisioned from the bike saddle, how these imaginaries are mobilised to empower cycling and how a seemingly disparate set of urban development pathways converge around technological artefacts and material infrastructure.
It is widely known that there is a strong relationship between local ethnic concentration and local social engagement. This article attempts to take a step forward by analysing the gap between the real and the expected local social engagement and its association with local ethnic concentration. Understanding this gap may assist policy makers with better urban planning aiming for high social cohesion, particularly in those cities with high ethnic concentrations. Using the case of the Netherlands, this article finds a positive association between the real and the expected local social engagement, but this is higher for native Dutch people than for immigrants (i.e. Turks, Moroccans, Surinamese and Antilleans). This article also finds that as local ethnic concentration increases, Moroccans and Turks seem to meet their own expectations, but this effect is stronger for Moroccans. This is likely to indicate that an increase in local ethnic concentration assists Moroccans and Turks to maintain their cultural traditions, as they are able to derive benefits from each other and offer support to one another within a locality.
The rising earnings inequality in China has sparked a heated debate on the socioeconomic outcomes of market transformation. While a large body of literature has focussed on the temporal trend of wage inequality during the reform period, much less attention has been devoted to the structural causes of regional variations in sectoral wage differentials. Using a micro-data sample from the 2005 one percent population sample survey and multilevel methods, this article examines the geographic variability of wage differentials between economic sectors in urban China, with a particular focus on the combination effects of market expansion and state intervention. The results indicate that sectoral wage differentials vary substantially across regions, and that market expansion interacts with state intervention to reconfigure earnings outcomes. Specifically, prefectures located in the interior region tend to exhibit a large wage premium for the state sectors, while prefectures located in the coastal region tend to display a wage advantage of the foreign-invested sector. The wage gap between the state and non-state sectors is smaller in areas with diversified ownership; openness to foreign investment increases the relative wages of foreign-invested-sector employees; stringent government regulation of industries increases the wage gap between the state monopoly sector and the non-monopoly sector; and strong redistributive power increases the wage premium for the public service sector over other sectors. Our findings suggest the necessity to take into account contextually constituted and locally specific wage-setting mechanisms when studying China’s wage inequality.
The city is not just a context for friendships or a problem to be solved through them; it can be a catalyst for these relationships, sparking and strengthening connections between individuals and groups. Shared experiences of and curiosity in cities – expressed through practices that include revisiting familiar places and exploring others for the first time – can draw people together in beneficial ways. These principles underpin a health and wellbeing agenda, pioneered in Liverpool, which encourages people to ‘take notice’ and ‘connect’ – two of five ‘ways to wellbeing’ promoted through the Liverpool Decade of Health and Wellbeing. This paper focusses upon one particular set of schemes and relationships which brings all this into focus: befriending schemes designed to support people with dementia, which engage with objects and places as catalysts for connection. These observations shed a broader light upon the meanings and uses of friendship, with particular reference to cities.
Locating justice in the city can be a difficult task. Urban theory has focused on exposing injustice and critiquing the multiple occurrences of injustice in cities. But what role could uncovering practices of actually existing justice in the city play in critical theory? How would we begin to look for actually existing justice in the here and now? By adopting a performative ontology and a politics of possibility, I argue that it is possible to expose, propose and amplify (Iveson, 2010) actually existing justice practices in the everyday city. A shift in thinking and research approach may be needed to make theoretical and ontological space for justice. In this paper I discuss research approaches that assist in locating justice in the city. Theorisations of a politics of possibility, performative ontological politics, weak theory and reading for difference are a suite of research practices that make space for the presence of justice. I argue that cities can be sites of actually existing justice practiced as a response to situated injustices or as a way of doing/being/thinking the city differently and demonstrate this with the example of Alfalfa House Organic Food Cooperative, Sydney, Australia. Documenting how justice is expressed in our cities is essential for work that seeks to grow and nurture justice projects.
The purpose of this article is to add another dimension to our understanding of travel behaviour by highlighting how individual decisions about travel are simultaneously influenced by both rational, calculable metrics of the transportation system but also by socially constructed, context-specific perceptions that travellers hold about the travel modes themselves. The context for this study is a rapid transformation of the market for intercity buses in the Northeast United States. In the past 15 years, new entrants have transformed a humdrum industry into a dynamic sector of the intercity travel market. The new entrants, curbside buses, have largely shunned traditional bus terminals in favour of picking up and dropping off bus passengers on city streets. Ridership has steadily increased, and these new bus companies have expanded operations throughout the country.
Drawing on a series of focus groups with intercity bus passengers, I describe how two sets of factors drive intercity travellers’ choice to travel onboard the new intercity buses. First, the new companies offer operational and economic advantages. Second, and surprisingly, focus group participants have different perceptions of the new bus companies than the old – and these perceptions appear to be influencing their travel decisions.
This paper contributes to research on urban multiculture and debates as to how people routinely live and experience ethnic diversity in their everyday lives. This research takes an ‘unpanicked’ approach to multiculture that sits differently to, although not unaffected by, multiculturalism as policy objective and those debates around multiculturalism that variously celebrate cultural difference or construct it through crisis talk. Critical to this paper are the routine phenomenologies of multiculture and the everyday practices, competencies and skills of young people attending college. Because of their diverse intakes and the openness of young people to difference, colleges are key sites within which urban multiculture is experienced and through which it is defined. Based on participant observation, repeat in-depth discussion groups and interviews, the focus of this paper is young adults attending post-16 colleges and schools in three ethnically diverse urban locations. Colleges and schools are urban spaces that mediate sociality and student experience but are also woven into the wider urban setting in which they are placed. The paper explores the skills and competencies that young adults develop to negotiate college and we particularly focus on their use of jokes and the exercise of restraint to get along with others.
Gay and lesbian neighbourhoods play a pivotal role as places of safety, empowerment and visibility for gay and lesbian individuals. Using over 9000 real estate listings from the gay- and lesbian-oriented Dallas Voice newspaper, our paper uses spatial statistical methods to explore the location of gay and lesbian neighbourhoods in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). With data spanning the years 1986 to 2012, we examine how gay and lesbian real estate hot spots have changed over time. Advertisers consistently listed rental properties in the primary gay neighbourhood of Oak Lawn in central Dallas. However, for-sale property listings tell another story; hot spots expanded considerably from the traditional gay neighbourhoods of Oak Lawn and Oak Cliff to include a number of adjacent neighbourhoods through the mid-2000s, then contracted during the late 2000s. We conclude that while adjacent neighbourhoods have become hot spots in recent years, the gay- and lesbian-oriented real estate market continues to focus on traditional gay and lesbian enclaves in central Dallas.
The characteristics of young households positioned on the edges of homeownership in a rapidly growing economy are investigated. This empirical work is based on a unique survey conducted in 2011 in Shanghai, which enables us to determine how young renters assess their major financial obstacles to becoming homeowners. We distinguish whether young renters attempting to access homeownership are constrained by a lack of sufficient funds for a down-payment, or by inadequate income, or by both. By connecting young renters’ individual characteristics to the various financial constraints they face, we are able to characterise the renters who are situated on the edges of homeownership. Based on these findings, we make policy recommendations on how the government could improve the homeownership prospects of young households close to the boundary between renting and owning in urban China, as opposed to those with minimal chances of attaining homeownership.
In the high-speed-rail (HSR) construction boom of China, although some cities have upgraded old train stations in inner cities to be compatible with HSR, more cities have built new HSR stations on undeveloped land in the urban periphery. This study investigates the impact of intra-city access to inter-city transport nodes and explores the implications of HSR station locations for the accessibility and residential property values in Chinese cities connected by bullet trains. We find that for the cities with HSR stations in suburbs, the gains in inter-city travel brought by HSR are largely offset by the prolonged intra-city travel time to reach the stations, thus limiting frequent usage of HSR for daily commuting. The inner-city HSR station in Hangzhou shows a positive impact on residential property value in the vicinity, while the suburban HSR station in Guangzhou has not been observed to raise the residential property values noticeably in the short term despite the government’s intention to stimulate development in surrounding areas. The research findings show the need for better connections of HSR stations with the city to magnify the accessibility provided by HSR and careful integrated planning to promote desirable urban development outcomes in station areas.
In cities worldwide, low-carbon urban initiatives (LCUIs) are realised by pioneers that prove that climate mitigation strategies can be integrated in urban development trajectories. Practitioners and scholars reflect on the need to scale-up such initiatives in order to accelerate the transition to low-carbon cities. Yet, limited conceptual clarity exists regarding the meaning of the concept of ‘scaling-up’ and the factors driving this process. This article aims to contribute to practice and theory on low-carbon urban development by presenting a taxonomy on the concept of scaling-up. Moreover, an explanatory framework is presented consisting of factors expected to contribute to the impact and scaling-up of LCUIs. Two case studies were conducted to illustrate the explanatory framework. The studies are illustrative but suggest that the explanatory framework allows for a systematic understanding of how the impact of former initiatives can be explained, and how their scaling-up can be promoted.
How is a city’s international visibility historically formed? Applying a novel approach based on the Google Books N-gram corpus, we conducted the first empirical study to examine the pattern of and factors shaping the accumulation of international visibility by 294 major Chinese cities between the years of 1700 and 2000. We analyse the usage frequency of city names in Google English-language books to capture the international visibility of these major Chinese cities, and the appearance of these city names in the New York Times to capture media quotation over a definable number of years. Further, we performed the Granger causality test to see if media coverage helps to predict international visibility. The findings of this study demonstrate that the global fame of cities in mainland China is influenced by their exposure in media communications with the rest of the world. However, this media effect is not statistically significant for several former colonial cities, which are more likely to attain global fame through economic exchange in the global market.
Social scientists have long studied the effects of cities on human wellbeing and happiness. This article demonstrates that people in cities are less happy, confirming a long-standing argument in the literature. But it had not yet been tested whether it is urbanism that negatively affects happiness, or if urban problems such as crime and poverty are to blame. Wirth posited that urbanism itself led to negative effects, but Fischer noted the necessity of empirical tests of Wirth’s ideas. This study uses a happiness measure to provide a new look at the old question of urban unhappiness. Using the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we aim to untangle the effects of the city itself and urban problems on happiness in the USA. We find that the core characteristics of urban life (in particular size and density) contribute to urban unhappiness, controlling for urban problems. Urban unhappiness persists regardless of urban characteristics.
We focus on the role of within-family socialisation and the relationship between socialisation and resource transfers in the intergenerational transmission of housing preferences, the formation of familial housing attitudes and thus the reproduction of a normative housing tenure ladder across generations in Czech society. We show that resource transfers and the within-family socialisation of housing preferences, including preferences concerning housing tenure, are closely interconnected. In other words, parental influence on decision to buy own housing (and on housing preferences in general) of their adult children through socialisation is stronger if there is an (actual or assumed) intergenerational resource transfer. This has several implications for how housing markets and systems work. The paper draws on findings from qualitative, quantitative and experimental studies.
The concept of fiscal sustainability has become increasingly used over the last 20 years. However, much of the literature on fiscal sustainability at the sub-national level ignores the role of intergovernmental fiscal relations. To address this gap, this paper discusses a sufficient condition for sub-national fiscal sustainability and examines the importance of intergovernmental aid in determining that sustainability. Using panel data of counties and municipalities in the US, and using unit root and cointegration analytic techniques, this paper finds different levels of fiscal sustainability between counties and municipalities. We also find that intergovernmental aid plays an important role for fiscal sustainability for both counties and municipalities.
The large and growing body of neighbourhood effect studies has almost exclusively neglected individuals’ particular residential histories. Yet, former residential neighbourhoods are likely to have lingering effects beyond those of the current one and are dependent on exposure times and number of moves. This paper tests to what extent this blind spot induced a misestimation of neighbourhood effects for individuals with differential residential histories. Ultimately, we develop a methodological framework for studying the temporal dynamics of neighbourhood effects, capable of dealing with residential histories (moving behaviour, the passage of time and temporal exposure to different neighbourhoods). We apply cross-classified multi-level models (residents nested in current and former neighbourhoods) to analyse longitudinal individual-level population data from Dutch Statistics, covering fine-grained measures of residential histories. Our systematic comparison to conventional models reveals the necessity of including a temporal dimension: our models reveal an overestimation of the effect of the current neighbourhood by 16–30%, and an underestimation of the total body of neighbourhood effects by at least 13–24%. Our results show that neighbourhood effects are lingering, long-lasting and structural and also cannot be confined to a single point in time.
Externalities are believed to drive the productivity benefits of cities, and also of dense sub-parts within cities, e.g. the central business district (CBD). Recent research claims that density externalities accrue mostly to non-routine activities, and that their effects, e.g. human capital spillovers, attenuate sharply with distance. Consistent with these claims, I demonstrate strong clustering tendencies in non-routine professions as evidenced by job-switching patterns, specifically switchers’ distances moved between employers. Individual-level geo-coded data for switchers within Sweden’s metropolitan areas are used to illustrate that employees hired to non-routine occupations tend to switch to jobs close to the previous work establishment, while blue collar workers show dispersion. The differences are chiefly explained by (1) non-routine activities concentrate in the CBD (the strongest effect) and local employment centres, (2) non-routine activities cluster also outside of centres, and (3) industry-specific effects. The patterns are consistent with the importance of sharply attenuating non-market interactions (e.g. knowledge spillovers) in the production of non-routine products and services.
Racial and ethnic diversity in the United States is on the rise, as the country is projected to no longer have a racial majority by the mid-2040s. Much of this diversity is found in the United States’ large metropolitan areas, where it manifests itself unevenly. While some metropolitan neighbourhoods are growing highly diverse, others remain segregated by race and ethnicity. This paper introduces a framework for exploring the geography of neighbourhood diversity in US metropolitan areas, and defines the diversity gradient, a visual representation of how diversity varies with distance from the urban core. Analysis of the geography of metropolitan diversity from 1990 to 2010 reveals that the greatest increases in diversity are found in the suburbs and outlying areas, where diversity now peaks in many large metropolitan areas. Additional spatial analyses of neighbourhood diversity in Chicago and Dallas-Fort Worth show that clustering of highly diverse neighbourhoods has shifted to the suburbs from close-in urban areas, where many segregated and low-diversity neighbourhoods persist.
This paper examines the long- and short-run relationship between Australian house and unit prices across all capital cities over the period December 1995 to June 2015. We find that house and unit prices are cointegrated and, based on the results of Granger causality and generalised impulse responses, that house prices significantly influence unit prices across all cities. However, bi-directional causality (responses) exists only for major capital cities with the exception of Brisbane. We also, for the first time, apply self-excited threshold models to explore the complex interplay between house and unit prices in Australia. We find that when the market for units is self-excited, or bullish, the positive effects of house prices on unit prices are noticeably larger than otherwise. There is a varying degree of herd mentality in the Australian property market with Sydney and Darwin being the most and least ‘excitable’ capital cities, respectively.
Recent work in African urbanism conceptualises the African city as a metropolis in flux characterised by interconnected mobilities and heterogeneity, in contrast with the dichotomous construction of public versus private space common in development and planning discourse. Instead, open spaces are not purely private nor merely public but can be understood as liminal spaces, produced through the mobilities and rhythms that are constitutive of this urbanity in flux. A fine-grained study of activities and movements in such liminal urban space in the informal settlement of Jallah Town, Monrovia, Liberia, conducted over the course of two months in 2013, suggests that open spaces in this settlement are both heterogeneous and unstable, traced by fluctuating and porous boundaries between complex spatialities that serve multiple, age- and gender-contingent roles. By incorporating GIS-based spatial analysis with rhythmanalysis informed by phenomenological methods, these spatialities emerge as purposefully developed by residents and central to the reproduction of mobilities, rhythms and social networks constitutive of African urbanism. Such fine-grained analysis, in turn, serves to inform democratic and situated urban design and planning practices, especially in informal communities typically dismissed as irregular and illegal.
Will the consequences of residential segregation, that is, spatial concentration of marginalised populations on the one hand, and spatial concentration of affluent populations on the other hand, generate a situation where individual life trajectories are influenced by where individuals grow up? Our aim is to analyse how poverty risks and early income career at adult age are influenced by different neighbourhood contexts in early youth. We use Swedish longitudinal register data, and follow individuals born in 1980 until 2012. Residential context is measured in 1995 at age 15 by expanding a buffer around the residential locations of each individual and, by computing statistical aggregates of different socio-demographic variables for that population. The results show that poverty risks increase for individuals growing up in areas characterised by high numbers of social allowance recipients living nearby, whereas elite geographical context is favourable for both women’s and men’s future income.
This study investigates the effects of the urban spatial structure on the excess commuting rate (ECR) by comparing commuting patterns in two cities having distinctive urban forms, Seoul, Korea and Los Angeles, California, USA. A major difference was found in that commuters working closer to employment centres, or living in single-family detached housing in LA, are likely to have lower ECR, but not in Seoul. Employment suburbanisation, strict zoning separating residence and workplace and single-family housing-dominant low-density suburbs in LA are regarded as the reasons for their lower ECRs, which, by definition, imply relatively shorter actual commute duration and/or longer minimum time. Seoul can learn a lesson from LA for employment decentralisation in order to reduce actual commute time, while land use patterns in Seoul such as high level of mixed land use and compact development can provide policy implications for LA for improving commuters’ accessibility and reducing minimum time.
This paper examines the relationship between income inequality and property crime using Census block group data from three US cities: Nashville, TN, Portland, OR and Tucson, AZ. This paper is one of very few to examine this relationship at such a fine geographic level, which is typically less than one square mile in size. We find that income inequality across block groups plays a key role in determining the level of property crime. As the income gap with one’s poorest neighbouring block group widens, the level of property crime in the richer block group increases. Also, the poorest block group in an area tends to experience less property crime, holding all else constant.
We build on both our theoretical and empirical work on modelling the demand for paid sex (Della Giusta et al., 2009a, 2009b) and examine the demand for paid sex, considering the effects of risky behaviours and attitudes to relationships and to women on demand. We find that those who declare to have purchased sex have both different socio-demographics (older, with fewer children, more educated but with lower professional status), and different sexual and risky behaviours as well as attitudes to relationships. As expected in the light of findings in the literature (well summarised in a 2004 Urban Studies special issue and in more recent literature) a clear city effect in the sample, mostly driven by London, which goes beyond the attitudes captured in the survey and thus combines a mixture of factors related to the supply of paid sex and unobserved characteristics of city-dwelling respondents.
The Amsterdam Red-Light district is a globalised mass-entertainment place for sex consumption. But the visitors touring the Red-Light district are far more diverse than sex tourists: men, women, gay, straight, stag or cultural tourists tour this place to feel the thrill of desire and disgust. The paper documents this process of commodification by these visitors, engaging with their lived experiences through ethnographic research and in-depth interviews. The paper shows the diversity of the consumption practices and representations of the spectacle of commodified sex, explaining how the emotions experienced by those touring the sex district draw on intersectional belongings (gender, sexuality, class, ethnicity). Intertwining affective and moral geographies, it concludes by arguing that the symbolic consumption of the Red-Light district cannot necessarily be predicted by virtue of standard categories of belonging, with identity formation and the consumption of sex being shaped by a complex dynamic of looks and gazes.
This paper assesses determinants of habits and prices about sexual work in Germany. The paper alludes to a regional pattern, in particular, in pricing. This pattern varies with the size of cities and across as well as along the former East–West German border. In particular, the evidence suggests that there is a long shadow of the former Iron Curtain which leads to higher conditional prices in the former East than in the West, in particular, in larger agglomerations such as Berlin. Moreover, there is evidence of habit formation and spillovers within regions, which leads to regionally clustered prices as well as unsafe sex services being offered by sexworkers.
This paper offers an exploration of urban expansion from the point of view of the individual residents buying land, settling and living in new, rapidly growing peripheral settlements of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The findings suggest that the demand for affordable housing is the primary motivation for residents moving to the periphery. The demand for self-built, owner-occupier housing is especially significant initially, while the demand for non-ownership housing increases in importance later in the process. Income-related motives, on the other hand, are strikingly absent from settlement considerations. Urban residents settle in the periphery, even though income-generation is often tied to working somewhere else, namely in the central parts of the city. The paper proposes that the processes of urban expansion depicted in this study are usefully conceptualised as suburbanisation processes, though it is a type of suburbanisation that has some peculiarities given the particular context, where expansion happens informally and largely unguided by planners.
The dual conditions of an early emphasis on context within terrorism theory and an existing familiarity of place as point or jurisdiction for hazards researchers led to a subsequent diminished role for place as a core explanatory concept in the study of terrorism. This condition is increasingly untenable. There is growing evidence within the environmental risk-hazards literature and theories of terrorism that holistic understandings of place beyond simply a point on the Earth will enhance knowledge of how individuals might respond to this hazard. Drawing on 93 interviews conducted in Boston, Massachusetts (USA) before the Marathon attacks in 2013, and a subset of additional interviews conducted after, I answer the following question: What role does place play in the way that ordinary people experience vulnerability to terrorism at a micro-scale? I demonstrate that people interpret their risk not simply through the media or representativeness of particular places – ideas which are commonly assumed to amplify risk and fear – but rather that subjective experiences of everyday, practical places actually attenuate such perceptions and emotions. This paper presents several contributions to public policy, including rethinking a place-based paradigm for how emergency managers communicate with the public, how to generate a politics of fear reduction based in place, and how to rethink future studies on terrorism to appreciate the practical places of everyday life.
China’s rapid economic development has urbanised a great number of rural villagers since the late 1970s. One of the significant challenges is that urbanisation entails incorporating autonomous villages into integrative cities. Village-led rural industrialisation safeguards villagers’ interests, but it gives rise to a fragmented industrial landscape and piecemeal farmland in the context of high-density small-area village settlements. Suboptimal land utilisation consumes more land resources than necessary to meet urbanisation needs and thus deteriorates environmental integrity. Townships have been leading industrialisation in the rural areas after the demise of collective manufacturing in the Yangtze River Delta. Actively pursued by the municipal and township governments, agglomeration of industrial land in Kunshan occurs during the transition of industrial ownership, which results in integrated urban built-up areas. Agglomeration of dispersed village settlements (where villagers are no longer engaged in farming) into compact urban quarters ensues, facilitated by the collective land rent arising from urbanisation. A new problem of inequality in entitlement to landed benefits between villages arises. Fair distribution of land rent as the benefit of urbanisation among villages calls for coordination at a higher level than the village.
Taking the provision of building permits as an entry point to its analysis, the paper documents the widespread practice of issuing ‘exceptions’ on which planning agencies in Beirut (Lebanon) frequently rely in their management of urban developments. The paper analyses ‘exceptions’ as a variable set of policy departures that take numerous forms (e.g. tolerance, concession, incentive), temporalities (before/after building), justifications (e.g. for political/social or developmental reasons), and materialise in different legal statuses (e.g. within the framework of the law/as temporary, extra-legal measures). It furthermore unravels a grammar that structures the allocation of specific forms of exceptions to particular social groups and urban spaces. The paper argues that although they are typically described as aberrations, exceptions cannot amount to the lack of the planning. Exceptions are rather a planning strategy that introduces a margin of manoeuver for planning authorities, without conceding radical changes in the structure organising access to the city. Furthermore, like other planning interventions, exceptions to building permit procedures perform to define, and consolidate, and/or reconfigure the entitlement of various social groups to dwell in the city but also to take part in its government, materialising hence in the reorganisation of urban territories and sovereignty arrangements. Ultimately, an invisible zoning dictated by these exceptions restructures the city in the variegated geography of centre, periphery, slum, camp, political territory, and others, and classifies urban dwellers into tolerated populations, political constituencies, outsiders, etc. The paper is based on the analysis of over 200 building permits in five areas of the city and more than 1000 decisions taken by public planning agencies.
In the literature examining neighbourhood effects on educational outcomes, the socialisation mechanism is usually investigated by looking at the association between neighbourhood characteristics and educational attainment. The step in between, that adolescents actually internalise educational norms held by residents, is often assumed. We attempt to fill this gap by looking at how the internalisation of educational norms (commitments) is influenced by neighbourhoods’ immigrant concentration. We investigate this process for both migrant and native youth, as both groups might be influenced differently by immigrant concentrations. To test our hypothesis we used longitudinal panel data with five waves (N = 4255), combined with between-within models which control for a large portion of potential selection bias. These models have an advantage over naïve OLS models in that they predict the effect of change in neighbourhood characteristics on change in educational commitment, and therefore offer a more dynamic approach to modelling neighbourhood effects. Our results show that living in neighbourhoods with higher proportions of immigrants increases the educational commitments of migrant youth compared to living in neighbourhoods with lower proportions. Besides, we find that adolescents with a resilient personality experience less influence of the neighbourhood context on educational commitments than do adolescents with non-resilient personalities.
The perspectives of those most affected by urban change are often understudied, although these voices have the potential to inform academic understandings of the production of gentrified space. The Downtown Eastside (DTES) neighbourhood of Vancouver, BC is undergoing a period of intense redevelopment, raising concerns about the potential displacement of its predominantly low-income residents. In this study, informal recyclers (people who earn income from collecting recyclable or resaleable items) share their observations of neighbourhood change based on their lives and work in the DTES. Informal recyclers’ observations reveal that diverse gentrifying processes are at play in the DTES, including restricted access to space, the social exclusion of othered bodies, and the symbolic construction of the DTES as a place of poverty that is in need of intervention. The inclusion of informal recyclers’ perspectives provides nuance to place-based processes of gentrification, and acknowledges the concerns of low-income urbanites most affected by urban change.
The term ‘urban crisis’ emerged in the USA in the 1950s. Ever since the term came into popular use, it has be mobilised to advance a range of political and economic interests. Utilising a genealogical approach, this article traces the evolution, uses and abuses of the concept. It suggests that the various meanings attached to the term are rooted in two overarching frameworks. While one finds the origins of urban crisis in structural, primarily material, forces, the other sees the crisis as grounded in culture and immorality. The article argues that the concept was deployed in the 1950s and 1960s to justify government intervention of various sorts to stimulate economic growth. However, it finds the fiscal crises of the 1970s gave rise to a dominant understanding of urban crisis that promoted the spread of urban neoliberalism.
This paper presents a critical analysis of the contemporary policy focus on promoting employability among young people in the UK. Drawing on analysis of UK policy approaches to tackling youth unemployment since the late 1970s, we suggest that existing critiques of employability as ‘supply-side orthodoxy’ fail to capture fully its evolving meaning and function. Under the UK Coalition Government, it became increasingly colonised as a targeted tool of urban governance to legitimise ever more punitive forms of conditional welfare. We argue that this colonisation undermines the value of the notion of employability as an academic tool for understanding the reasons why young people face difficulties in entering the labour market. The paper suggests that the notion of youth transitions offers more potential for understanding youth unemployment, and that more clearly linking this body of research to policy could provide a fruitful avenue for future research. Such a shift requires a longer term, spatially informed perspective as well as greater emphasis on the changing power relations that mediate young people’s experiences of wider social and economic transformations. The paper concludes that promoting employment among urban young people requires a marked shift to address the historically and geographically inadequate knowledge and assumptions on which policies are based.
Squatters and migrants use the city space in a peculiar and anomalous manner. Their contributions to the social and political production of urban space are not usually considered crucial. Furthermore, their mutual relationship is under-researched. In this paper I investigate the participation of migrants in the squatting of abandoned buildings. This may entail autonomous forms of occupation but also various kinds of interactions with native squatters. By looking historically at the city of Madrid I distinguish four major forms of interactions. I collect evidence in order to show that deprivation-based squatting is not necessarily the prevailing type. The forms of ‘empowerment’ and ‘engagement’ were increasingly developed while ‘autonomy’ and ‘solidarity’ were continuously present. These variations occurred because of specific drivers within the cycles of movements’ protests and other social and political contexts which facilitated the cooperation between squatters and migrants, although language barriers, discrimination in the housing market and police harassment constrained them too. Therefore, I argue first that two key social organisations triggered the interactions in different protest cycles. Second, I show how, in spite of the over-representation of Latin American migrants, the political squatting movement in Madrid has consistently incorporated groups of migrants and their struggles in accordance with anti-fascist, anti-racist and anti-xenophobic claims and practices. The analysis also provides a nuanced understanding about the ‘political’ implications of squatting when migrants are involved.
This paper reports on a project exploring the friendships of children and adults in ‘super-diverse’ (Vertovec, 2007) localities in London, England, examining whether and how friendships are made and maintained across ethnic and social class differences. The aim is to identify what friendships reveal about the nature and extent of ethnic and social divisions in contemporary multicultural society. Drawing on interviews with children and their parents, this paper analyses affective parental responses to their children’s friendships, identifying instances where parents seek to manage these friendships. We identify the importance of the ‘ease of similarity’ for many parents concerning their children’s friendships, and the relative lack of concrete practices amongst parents to support their children’s friendships across difference. However, we also note parental support for living in super-diverse localities and children attending schools therein.
Infrastructure convenes social relations, thereby revealing how city dwellers access shared resources in the context of growing inequality. Our exploration of migrant infrastructure engages with how highly variegated migrant groups develop a ‘transaction economy’ (Simone, 2004) within marginalised city streets, exchanging goods and services, and information and care. In the context of ethnically diverse and deprived urban places, where state resources are increasingly diminished, we explore how a precarious yet skilled resourcefulness emerges through the street. Our empirical exploration of migrant infrastructure is located on Rookery Road in Birmingham and on Narborough Road in Leicester, and draws on qualitative surveys with 195 self-employed proprietors from many countries of origin. The streets reveal transaction economies that intersect local and migratory resources, eluding the categorisation of cities associated with either a global North or a global South. Further, the lively nature of street transactions decentres western-centric measures of economic value. From the street, we develop a postcolonial analysis of infrastructure that relates properties of historic depth (power), socio-spatial texture (materiality) and locality (place).
Slum dwellers in developing countries reside in inhuman conditions, with little provision of basic facilities and with considerable overlap between sources of drinking water supply, sewerage and the area for garbage disposal. Is it because clean environment does not enter their decision function for residence selection or is it simply non-affordability? We examine these questions in the context of the registered slum clusters of four Indian cities – Mathura, Ujjain, Jaipur and Ludhiana. A primary survey was conducted in these cities under a project on urban poverty undertaken jointly by the United Nations Development Programme and the Government of India in 2006–2007, based on which this analysis has been pursued. A reduced form hedonic equation of house prices of owned residential units is estimated to ascertain slum dwellers’ preferences in house selection. We find house prices vary consistently with many structural variables, but with only two of the neighbourhood features – streetlight and sewage facility provided by the government. Most of the other neighbourhood variables like provision of water, garbage collection, healthcare etc. including presence of open drain in the neighbourhood have insignificant effect on house prices. Measures of willingness to pay show strong promise of cost sharing for slum improvisation programs for facilities like sewage and street lights. Further, slums located within the city, closer to the CBD fetch higher prices. Slum residents expect public provision of other facilities.
Shanghai continues to position itself as the financial capital of the Chinese mainland economy. The concomitant explosion in wealth, the increasing penetration of consumer culture, the in-migration of vast numbers of non-Shanghainese to the city seeking work and the dispersal of the city to the periphery all have significant implications for mobility. This research poses three questions: 1) How do people move around Shanghai? 2) Why do they move in this way? 3) How does this choice of mobility impact on their being and sense of agency? Adopting a qualitative methodology, we approach mobility as a cultural phenomenon and seek to uncover the meanings that car drivers and transit riders attach to mobility and how this impacts their life and their experience of Shanghai. We found that in spite of the fact that Shanghai now has the most extensive metro system in the world, there is a growing materially, culturally and socially embedded automobile culture. The car has a resilient symbolic appeal for the residents of Shanghai. While the automobile is enabling in some routine functions of daily life, collectively it has diminished the agency of people in Shanghai. Congestion, pollution and psychosocial pressure to buy a car portend a socially unsustainable system of mobility. While the metro enables vast numbers of individuals to perform the functions of daily life, it is becoming overcrowded and is associated with the spatial and class-based segregation of people.
Though previous studies have examined how formalising land tenure affects housing improvements in informal settlements, the role of tenure security and its long-term influence remain unclear. In response, this paper quantitatively examines the extent to which formalising land tenure by way of slum declaration has stimulated housing improvements during the last three decades in the slums of Pune, India. Since slum declaration guarantees residents occupancy but not full property rights, this study focuses on how tenure security contributes to housing outcomes, such as materials, size, the number of floors and the amount of money spent for the improvements. Using original household survey data, analysis involving propensity score matching and difference-in-differences methods reveals that slum declaration has tripled a household’s likelihood of having added a second floor and, albeit less clear, increased the average amount of money spent on housing improvements. At the same time, slum declaration has not induced any improvement in housing materials, largely since many residents of non-formalised slums have also replaced materials. These results indicate that slum declaration, even in the long run, has continued to influence housing investments in Pune’s slums, in terms of both type and amount spent, though residents of non-formalised slums have also come to enjoy certain de facto tenure security. Among other implications for policy, these findings underscore that governments should at least provide legal assurance of occupancy rights in informal settlements, even if active interventions such as slum upgrading and titling are currently difficult.
This article demonstrates and advocates the importance of theoretical frameworks which allow for nuance and complexity. Moving away from fixed ways of reading and analysing processes of urban renewal (such as gentrification, revanchism, neoliberal urbanism), it seeks to show how a diversity of imperatives and agendas are present and shape moments of urban change and the practices of actors involved in these. Drawing on research conducted in inner-city Johannesburg which focussed on private-sector-led regeneration, housing provision and security, it demonstrates that the process underway is characterised by a multiplicity of goals and practices. Regeneration is formulated within a neoliberal paradigm, yet through creative strategies and interventions is also achieving developmental goals and expanding the provision of affordable, centrally-located housing. The article details the strategies adopted by organisations specialising in financing social and affordable housing and demonstrates the ways in which these emphasise and are helping to achieve the expansion of housing provision to low-income households. It further discusses the habitus of housing providers in the inner-city and shows how these have been influenced by and respond to the developmental challenges and racial transformation which characterise the area. It thus demonstrates that local contexts, concerns and agendas influence the regeneration process and that putatively global processes such as gentrification, revanchism and neoliberal urbanism, whilst still relevant, need to be used in ways which allow for alternative, vernacular narratives and explanations to emerge too.
A growing body of literature has attempted to understand the social integration of rural migrants in Chinese cities, and specifically patterns and determinants of migrant settlement intention. However, few studies have directly investigated the role of housing access in migrant settlement in cities. Based on a 12-city migrant survey conducted in 2009, this paper adopts the structural equation modelling approach to delineate the causal relationship between housing access and migrant settlement intention. We found a positive correlation between access to formal housing and stronger settlement intention, but such relationship was more attributed to a sorting process in which rural migrants who are more willing to settle down strive to expand their access to formal housing. Meanwhile, controlling for socio-demographic variables, sociocultural attachment factors are more significant predictors of migrant settlement intention than economic opportunities and achievements. These findings imply the necessity of a combination of affordable housing policy and other social policy measures if the government hopes to achieve the goal of boosting permanent settlement of rural migrants in cities and towns.
Prior studies in finance have examined the comovement of stock returns of firms headquartered in the same location. One interpretation of the results is that local investors have a ‘local bias’ due to an information advantage on local firms. We propose that localised agglomeration economies affect the fundamentals of local firms, resulting in the local comovement of stock returns. Using data for China A-share listed firms from 1997 to 2007, we find evidence of the comovement of stock returns of Chinese firms headquartered in the same city. We find inconsistent evidence for the local bias theory. The comovement of the stock returns of firms headquartered in the same city is stronger when the agglomeration economies in the city are stronger, suggesting that localised agglomeration economies provide an alternative explanation of the comovement of stock returns.
Energy retrofit of the existing building stock has a key role in responding to climate change. In light of a recent experience in Northern Italy, this article examines a new tool based on land development rights with which to support the reduction of energy consumption and the production of renewable energy in urban areas. The market stimulation tool is discussed in terms of an integrated conceptual model that starts from the similarities and differences between national and international uses of ‘non-financial instruments’. The research results show how difficult it is to transfer a theoretical concept to local realities. Nevertheless, a new role of the public administration whereby it activates private actors in addressing climate change goals will be even more challenging.
Based on thorough ethnographic descriptions, this article analyses retirees’ collective activities in Beijing public parks where co-presence and interactions between formerly unacquainted individuals have evolved into achieved relations of familiarity and friendship. Focusing on how people define, enact and manage the relationships with those they ‘have fun’ with, I show that the forms of mutual knowing developed through joint participation often blur the boundaries between the private, parochial and public realms on the one hand, and between community and anonymity on the other hand. While the urban experience in the Chinese context has been viewed as constituted through both ‘face’ (i.e. communitarian) and ‘faceless’ (i.e. anonymous) interactions, I argue that these are but two conceptual poles which cannot exhaust the complex nature of social relationships that arise from urban encounters. Activity-orientated friendships in Beijing parks involve wide-ranging forms of mutual knowing, which shape a pleasurable urban experience as much as they are infused with the ‘ethics of indifference’ peculiar to city living. As retirees initiate and sustain pleasurable interactions, these forms of sociality do not entail tight reciprocal commitments. Instead of viewing the situations in which friendships are produced as an instantiation of the ‘broader contexts’ in which they are embedded, I suggest that these everyday spatial practices and convivial interactions should be considered for their intrinsic analytical value rather than as a response to external processes.
This paper uses street-level data on property sales and crime rates for England and Wales to investigate compensating differentials for crime risk. My identification strategy relies on the use of non-parametric regional time trends on various levels of spatial aggregation as well as various fixed effects for streets and wider areas to control for unobserved amenities and regional economic conditions. The data comes from transaction data collected by the land registry and recently published crime maps for the whole of the UK. My estimates, which are robust to a range of sensible specification changes, suggest that each case of anti-social behaviour per ten population in the same street leads to an approximately 0.6–0.8% drop in property prices, while a corresponding increase in violent crime decreases prices by roughly 0.6–1.6% and a corresponding increase in non-violent crime by about 0.2–0.4%. The majority of estimates are at the upper end of these intervals. Estimates for robbery, burglary and vehicle crime are either zero or positive, but are possibly biased because of reverse causality. Crime outside of the respective street does not appear to matter, which is consistent with earlier findings. Expressed in monetary terms each case of anti-social behaviour costs society between £5000 and £6700 and each violent crime between £5000 and £13,300. The results confirm estimates based on prior willingness-to-pay studies and other studies using smaller areas such as single cities.
This study evaluates the effects of the recent US housing bust on the White–Black homeownership gap by estimating and decomposing the changes in the distribution of the gap between 2005 and 2011. Our analysis shows that the housing bust did not affect the homeownership gap uniformly. In fact, we find that the gap decreased for households that were the least likely to own and remained unchanged for households that were the most likely to own, and that Black households with around a 50% probability of homeownership were especially vulnerable to the crisis. We also find that the contribution of the residual gap was modest. Changes in the White–Black homeownership gap over the sample period are mainly attributed to changes in household income, whether the household earned dividend, interest or rental income, and marital status, with the extent of their respective influences varying over the homeownership distribution. Our empirical approach reveals distributional information on the determinants of the changes in the homeownership gap at the household level. Such insights have valuable policy implications that would otherwise be concealed in analyses that look only at the conditional mean.
As a rapidly ageing population becomes an increasingly serious social challenge for Chinese megacities, issues affecting older adults’ subjective well-being (SWB) attract greater concern. However, it is difficult to gain a comprehensive understanding of older adults’ SWB, since most SWB theories focus only on specific factors. Moreover, residential environmental factors are hardly considered in studies of older adults’ SWB. In this paper we therefore investigate the effects of residential environment and individual resources on the SWB of older adults in Shanghai, using the integrative theoretical framework proposed by Lindenberg. We investigate the relationships between resources (residential environment and individual resources), needs satisfaction and SWB using multiple regression analysis. Our results show that the residential environment exerts a stronger impact on SWB than individual resources. Good quality residential building, good accessibility to medical and financial facilities, higher economic status of a neighbourhood, and a lower proportion of older adults in a neighbourhood are important environmental correlates of SWB. Health appears to be the most significant individual resource; other important individual resources include household income, a high-skilled occupation, a job in the public sector and living with grandchildren. Comfort is the most important basic need for older adults.
China is known in the post-cold war era for its rapid urban regeneration. Urban villages that emit negative social externalities are a unique and salient disamenity, and are central to the urban regeneration policy and planning. This paper uses micro-geographical data to explore how the extent and configuration of recently renewed urban villages in Beijing have influenced nearby housing values. Compared with locations having similar demographic characteristics, locations near urban village renewal sites experienced increases in housing values. Additional results quantify evidence in support of the heterogeneous effects from urban village renewals in affected areas versus unaffected areas.
Urban regeneration (UR) programmes are recognised as a type of Population Health Intervention (PHI), addressing social and health inequalities. Policy recommends programmes involve communities through engagement and empowerment. Whilst the literature has started to link empowerment with health improvement, this has not been within an UR context. As part of broader research on the economic evaluation of community empowerment activities, this paper examines how health gains can be generated through promoting empowerment as well as identifying whether feelings of empowerment are associated with residents personal characteristics or perceptions of their neighbourhood. Using 2011 Community Health and Wellbeing Survey (GoWell) cross-sectional data, ordinal logistic regression and simple linear regression analysis of 15 Glasgow neighbourhoods undergoing regeneration with 4302 adult householders (≥16 years old) was completed. Analyses identified strong associations (P≥ 0.05) between empowerment and the mental health subscale of the SF12v2 and with several items of the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale (WEMWBS) scale. Furthermore, residents’ who felt more empowered reported more positive attitudes towards their surroundings and housing providers. This concurs with recent evidence of the importance of residents’ psychological investments in their neighbourhood influencing their sense of place attachment. Such analyses present initial evidence of the value of investing resources within UR programmes to activities geared towards increasing residents’ empowerment as a means of producing those health gains often sought by more costly aspects of the programmes.
Beijing residents tend to prefer central residential locations, probably because of the centralisation of employment and high transit ridership; both factors are thought to justify rail transit investments. The Beijing government has invested heavily in rail transit in recent years. Meanwhile, new small-sized apartments are also being developed farther away from downtown. Based on data on new housing projects, difference-in-difference estimates show that, on average, station proximity increases housing price and decreases dwelling size, especially in the suburbs, although suburban households may respond to rail transit plans less sensitively. Also, in areas where there are stations, both the estimated increase, after line announcements and openings, and the estimated decrease, after groundbreakings, in prices are greater for large than for small homes, although the negative groundbreaking effects particularly tend to vary considerably across lines. Government policies that encourage small-sized housing and affordable housing to be built around suburban stations also play a significant role. Beijing’s special experience offers a chance to make intercity comparisons.
Many scholars point to urban decentralisation as a key contributor to transit’s decline in the USA during the 20th century. This paper examines the link between decentralisation and transit by testing the scholarly argument that transit should decentralise. Using a case study of a smaller US metropolitan area whose transit service was restructured from a centralised to a decentralised model, the authors found that in this context the change involved making tradeoffs between improving service for some parts of the community and degrading it for others. While ridership increased in previously unserved suburban markets, the net result was not an overall ridership increase because of its decline in inner-city neighbourhoods. The authors argue that these results, which were unanticipated based on a review of the scholarly literature, suggest the need for more sensitivity to the importance of local context for scholars working in this domain.
The emergence of the network paradigm has led to growing interest in understanding network structures relating to knowledge flows and patterns of regional innovation. This paper explores the structure of knowledge networks stemming from ties between universities and other actors, principally firms. Based upon a network analysis of empirical data for regions across the UK, it is found that the most innovative and economically developed regions are more likely to be the location for actors holding highly central and influential positions within knowledge network architectures. It is concluded that network structures, and resulting stocks of structural network capital, influence patterns of regional innovation and development.
In the past 30 years, culture has been used as a means for revitalising neighbourhoods and branding the urban economy. Often, culture-led urban policies have had undesirable consequences in terms of rising rents, displacement of former residents and changes in the economic and retail landscape, i.e. gentrification. However, this process is not univocal, and displacement may not occur while disrupting community life. In this paper we explore the changes that have occurred in San Francisco, a working-class neighbourhood of Bilbao where the attraction of cultural industries has been used to revitalise the area and change the city image. We employ a framework that considers the built form, the cultural cluster organisation and the socioeconomic and demographic changes and we rely on different sources of evidence, including neighbourhood level socioeconomic data, personal interviews and a participatory evaluation, to capture the edges of this complex phenomenon. Our analysis suggests a less deterministic and more complex characterisation of culture-led neighbourhood transformations beyond the revitalisation/gentrification discourses, since conflicts may be driven not by economic transformations and social class replacement, but by the symbolic representation of space and the ‘right to the neighbourhood’.
Most previous studies have reported that housing prices diffuse from the city centre to surrounding areas. However, these studies have overlooked the fact that housing prices comprise fundamental and bubble prices. We investigated whether bubble prices also diffuse from the city centre to suburbs and whether fundamental or bubble prices promote housing price diffusion. We focused on the movement of housing bubbles from the city centre to the suburbs. Using data for the Taipei metropolitan area from 1973 to 2014 for empirical analysis, our state-space model estimates statistically significant fundamental and bubble prices in Taipei City (city centre) and New Taipei City (suburbs). Engle–Granger cointegration test results reveal that the housing and bubble prices of the two cities are cointegrated; however, fundamental prices are not. F statistics reveal that the Granger causality of bubble prices (the central city Granger causing changes in the suburbs) is more significant and powerful than that of the fundamental prices. Therefore, we demonstrate that housing bubbles force housing price diffusion. In addition, when bubble prices spread from the city centre to the suburbs, the housing bubble in the suburbs is larger than that in the city centre, implying that the suburbs have greater potential for a bubble burst crisis called the bubble contagion. Authorities should pay more attention to the bubble contagion and must address the problem of high housing prices in the suburbs to prevent this bubble from bursting
The city of São Paulo, historically important as a destination for migrants from across the world, has experienced newer waves of immigration in the past few decades. As Brazilian national legislation and municipal policies have been ill prepared to handle these recent flows, migrants find themselves without much institutional support and rely instead on other networks to find their way in the city. This article is based on ethnographic research among low-income migrants in São Paulo, many of whom are employed as tailors and garment vendors in the city’s thriving central commercial neighbourhoods. Migrants from Bolivia, Peru, China, Pakistan and Nepal co-exist alongside working-class Brazilians. This article traces the everyday forms of conviviality among these migrants who find themselves in precarious conditions in São Paulo. It will consider the lines along which friendships and networks of support and sociability are built and the depth of such relationships. It also considers the points of tension which divide people and strain potential friendships, for instance, when migrants compete to sell their goods and are exploited by ‘fellow migrants’ to survive in the city. What we see is an ambivalent field of interaction that is convivial yet competitive and distrustful.
Over the last decade two key changes affecting employability, labour market operation and policy delivery are austerity and the expansion of the use of information and communication technologies (ICT), especially web-based technologies. Increasingly, given pressures for cost savings and developments in ICT, employers’ recruitment and selection strategies are at least partly web-based, careers guidance and public employment services are moving towards ‘digital by default’ delivery and job seekers are expected to manage their job search activity and benefit claims electronically. So, what are the implications of austerity and technological change for employability? This article presents a critical review of the literature on ICT and its relation to, and implications for, employability in a context of austerity. A new framework for employability is presented and those aspects of employability where ICT plays a key role are highlighted. It is concluded that in the context of austerity and technological change more is demanded of individual job seekers/workers, as they are expected to take greater responsibility for their marketability in the labour market. This means that individuals’ attributes and skills are of enhanced importance in conceptualisations of employability. ICT skills have a key role to play in employability, but not at the expense of more conventional social skills which remain very important alongside digital literacy.
This paper examines the relationships between county-level urbanisation, natural amenities and subjective well-being (SWB) in the US. SWB is measured using individual-level data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) which asks respondents to rate their overall life satisfaction. Using individual-level SWB data allows us to control for several important individual characteristics. The results suggest that urbanisation lowers SWB, with relatively large negative coefficients for residents in dense counties and large metropolitan areas. Natural amenities also affect SWB, with warmer winters having a significant positive relationship with self-reported life-satisfaction. Implications for researchers and policymakers are discussed.
Finland has been known for its excellent PISA results in educational outcomes throughout the last decade. The country has boasted a rare combination of high overall level, as well as uniquely good outcomes of the bottom performers. However, the latest PISA results and the recent socio-spatial developments within the Finnish cities challenge this nationally celebrated balance in schools and urban social structure. Until now, research evidence has demonstrated that in the Finnish context with a powerful, universalist welfare state and a highly educated, homogenous population, differentiation increases mainly by the growth of an elite. Our analysis of large datasets from schools and neighbourhoods in Helsinki suggests that this development has been overturned in the local level: segregation has begun to increase and appears to operate through the trends of middle-class avoidance and the decline of the underprivileged groups in urban schools and neighbourhoods.
In recent years, three superficially distinct urban subfields have made parallel efforts to incorporate the city’s traditional ‘outsides’ into urban research. Urban political ecology, American urban sociology and postcolonial urban studies have made, respectively, ‘nature’, the ‘rural’ and the ‘not-yet’ city the objects of self-consciously urban analyses. I argue that these interventions are analogous efforts to hybridise city/nature, city/country or society/nature binaries, and that they have a common cause. Each is a response to a persistent ‘city lens’ that remains pervasive in urban practice, and whose assumptions are an increasingly poor fit for contemporary urban environments. This lens, ground in the context of the 19th century metropolis, interprets the world through a series of binary associations hung on the basic assumption that the city can be defined against a non-urban outside. I develop John Berger’s (2008 ) idea of ‘ways of seeing’ as a heuristic for understanding this situation and, using the case of nature, show how the city lens encourages practitioners and some scholars to romanticise, anachronise or generalise when confronting signs of the not-city in the urban. I conclude by evaluating the limitations of hybridity as a solution to the problems of the city lens, and by outlining an alternative approach. I advocate for turning this way of seeing into a research object, and argue for the importance of an historical and process-oriented examination of the ongoing use of these categories even as critical urban scholars attempt to move beyond them.
This paper reports an investigation of homebuyers and the influence of local social capital (LSC) on their housing decisions. We adopt a housing search model and predict the following two effects of LSC: a homebuyer with more social capital in a given location will have a higher propensity to relocate in that location and will be able to secure a housing transaction at a more favourable price in that location. Using data from the owner-occupied housing market in Tianjin, China, we find that LSC tends to inhibit homebuyers from moving far from their original neighbourhoods. LSC also helps homebuyers purchase their housing units at an average price that is 7% lower than the prices paid by those with less LSC when relocating within their original neighbourhoods and 3% lower if they relocate outside of their original neighbourhoods but within the same general location.
We empirically analyse regional inflation using data from Japan where there is no regulation to impede the free movement of labour, capital, goods and services across regions. In particular, our analysis will focus on the geographical location of regions and the productivity (known as the Balassa-Samuelson (BS)) effect as explanations for the dynamics of regional inflation. Based on a spatial model which is consistent with the theoretical specification of the BS, we have confirmed that, while it is a relatively small country in terms of land area, both spatial location and productivity are important determinants of regional inflation.
Historic preservation is common practice across the world, including in US cities. At the same time, population decline, economic distress and vacancy prevalent in declining cities, also known as legacy, shrinking or post-industrial cities, creates a pressing threat to a vast array of urban historic buildings. In the USA, recent planning and policy emphasises strategic demolition and/or targeting resources in potentially viable neighbourhoods, with little attention paid to historic preservation. To fill this gap, we use a comparative case study of federal historic rehabilitation tax credit (RTC) investments from 2000 to 2010 across the neighbourhoods of six legacy cities: Baltimore, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Providence, Richmond and St. Louis. This is the first study to use disaggregated, longitudinal RTC data to analyse investment at the neighbourhood scale. We use the Hirschman-Herfindahl Index to evaluate investment concentration and US Census 2000 data to characterise neighbourhoods where developers chose to undertake RTC projects. The findings show that RTC investments occurred across a wide range of places, including very low- and low-income neighbourhoods, and produced both market-rate and affordable housing across each city’s neighbourhoods. The findings indicate that preservation occurs across a wide range of legacy city neighbourhoods and inform urban planners and policymakers about locations where the private sector is willing to invest with favourable financing.
This study broadens understanding of how children’s travel modes influence the development of their spatial cognition, specifically the development of their spatial representation of home–school routes. Data were collected using a questionnaire survey and a cognitive mapping process at an elementary school in northern Taiwan. The sample, which comprised 521 Grades 1–6 children aged 7–12 years, was analysed through linear regressions. Empirical results indicate that the use of independent, active or non-motorised transportation modes improved the children’s spatial cognition regarding their home–school routes. This study not only provides new knowledge about the relationships between travel modes and the spatial cognition of children, but also identifies policy directions in relation to school transportation and the development of spatial cognition in children.
The present paper deals with Chinese transnational sex labour migration in the city of Douala, the economic capital of Cameroon and the country’s major city. Based on ethnographic research conducted in the prostitution milieu of Douala between 2008 and 2012, and on information collected from both scholarly and popular literature, this contribution shows how the development in this African city of what can be called Chinese sexoscapes has induced the reconfiguration of the local geography of commercialised sex work, which for so long was dominated by native sex workers. The paper also demonstrates how many disgruntled Duala sex workers dealt with the so-called Chinese sex invasion of their city by relocating their business to popular entertainment areas commonly characterised in Cameroon as rue de la joie (street of enjoyment). The research argues that this local geography of sexualities has become a site for asserting ethnic, racial or national identity, and especially a space of both inclusion of people profiled as autochthon populations and the exclusion of those branded foreigners.
This article examines the density effect and the optimum density of the urban population using panel data from China’s 284 cities from 2006 to 2010. Considering the endogeneity problem from the employment density in the density effect, we employ the density of the public transport passenger volume instead, and we control the size effect and the structure effect to obtain more reasonable results. Our results indicate that, using the dependent variables of product per labour and wage, the density effect shows an inverted U shape. Further study shows that the optimum urban population density gauged by the total urban population divided by the built-up area is approximately 13,000 people per km2 for the prefecture-level cities in China. The results are robust. Based on the concept and value of the optimum urban population density, China has a huge potential urban land use capacity of approximately 28% of total built-up area. China’s expansion of the city built-up area and the process of population urbanisation should be coordinated by the optimum urban population density.
Based on the 2006 wave of the China General Social Survey, this paper analyses interregional disparities in residential satisfaction in urban China. It also explores whether the determinants vary across the coastal, central and inland regions by means of a multi-group structural equation model (SEM). We find that residential satisfaction in the coastal region is lower than in the central and inland regions. Housing quality, home ownership, community type, socioeconomic status and Hukou in all three regions have positive impacts on residential satisfaction, while the presence of children has a negative effect. The magnitude of each variable’s impact on residential satisfaction varies across regions due to the disparities in economic, social and physical conditions. Housing quality is the most important determinant of residential satisfaction in the coastal region, whereas community type and Hukou are the most important in the central and inland regions.
This research aims to understand knowledge bases in urban systems of innovation and entrepreneurship. Using principal component analysis, it develops a new typology that differentiates urban knowledge bases into management knowledge, biomedical knowledge, engineering knowledge, arts and humanities knowledge, transportation knowledge and agricultural knowledge. The following multivariate analysis shows that management knowledge and engineering knowledge are of major importance in facilitating innovation and high technology entrepreneurship in US cities. Additionally, arts and humanities knowledge is positively associated with innovation but not with entrepreneurship. This research sheds light on public policy to build a vibrant urban system of innovation and entrepreneurship.
As a unique phenomenon of urbanisation in China, the emergence of urban villages has attracted considerable attention from the academic community. Adopting an institutional approach on land development, this study analyses how the land property rights regime affects village-led land development behaviours and spatial outcomes in urban villages. Using a set of reliable data from Shenzhen, the empirical study shows that, although unequal land rights under the current land property rights regime impose severe institutional constraints to the development of urban villages, they actually play a much more important and diversified role in China’s urbanisation than previously recognised. As the primary developers of urban villages, villagers have adopted various land development strategies in response to the changing market environment and internal economic conditions in the dynamic urbanisation process. These dynamic strategies have contributed to the coexistence of sub-optimal industrial development and high-quality housing development in urban villages.
Research into understanding the relationship between access to housing, health and wellbeing in cities has yielded mixed evidence to date and has been limited to case studies from Western countries. Many studies appear to highlight the negative effects of public housing in influencing the health of its residents. Current trends in the urban housing markets in cities of advanced Asian economies and debates surrounding the role of government in providing housing underscore the need for more focused research into housing and health. In this paper, we investigate Hong Kong as an example of a thriving Asian city by exploring and comparing the intra-urban geographies of premature mortality and public housing provision in the city. Using a fully Bayesian spatial structural model, we estimate associations between public housing provision and different types of premature mortality. We find significant geographic variations in premature mortality within Hong Kong during the five-year period 2005–2009, with positive associations between the residents of public housing and premature mortality risk. But the associations attenuate or are even reversed for premature mortality of injuries and non-communicable diseases after controlling for local deprivation, housing instability, access to local amenities and other neighbourhood characteristics. The results indicate that public housing may have a protective effect on community health, which contradicts the findings of similar studies carried out in Western cities. We suggest reasons why the association between public housing and health differs in Hong Kong and discuss the implications for housing policy in Hong Kong and other Asian cities.
Little attention is paid in the extant academic literature to the question of housing knowledge workers despite the potential mismatches between housing supply and demand. This paper provides an initial examination of housing the knowledge economy in China, focusing on three science parks (SPs): Zhongguancun (Z-Park, Beijing), Zhangjiang (Z-SHIP, Shanghai) and Optics Valley of China (OVC, Wuhan). It discusses to what extent, and how these three SPs have factored in the housing dimension in connection with the knowledge economy, paying particular attention to housing affordability, location (inside the SPs or outside in the wider city-region) and the mode of provision (market or state). Insights were drawn from documentary analysis and in-depth interviews in the three chosen case studies. Initial evaluation of policies geared towards housing supply in China suggests that the housing question needs to come to the fore in discussions of structural transformation towards the knowledge economy.
Variable mortgage contracts dominate the UK mortgage market. The dominance of the variable rate mortgage contracts has important consequences for the transmission mechanism of monetary policy decisions and systemic risks. This raises an obvious concern that a mortgage market such as that in the UK, where the major proportion of mortgage debt is either at a variable or fixed for less than two years rate, is vulnerable to alterations in the interest rate regime. Theoretically, mortgage choice is determined by demand and supply factors. So far, most of the existing literature has focused on the demand side perspective, and what is limited is consideration of supply side factors in empirical investigation on mortgage choice decisions. This paper uniquely explores whether supply side factors may partially explain observed/ex-post mortgage type decisions. Empirical results detect that lenders’ profit motives and mortgage funding/pricing issues may have assisted in preferences toward variable rate contracts. Securitisation is found to positively impact upon gross mortgage lending volumes while negatively impacting upon the share of variable lending flows. This shows that an increase in securitisation not only improves liquidity in the supply of mortgage funds, but also has the potential to shift mortgage choices toward fixed mortgage debt. The policy implications may involve a number of measures, including reconsideration of the capital requirements for the fixed, as opposed to the variable rate mortgage debt, growing securitisation and optimisation of the mortgage pricing policies.
Hosting a mega-event is a costly activity of short duration. Still, cities frequently compete to become host of all types of events. This paper examines the effect of staging the largest and most important sporting event in the world, the Summer Olympic Games, on the host city. Applying a difference-in-differences methodology, we analyse the population size of Olympic cities, candidate cities and other large cities in host and candidate countries over the period from 1860 to 2010. We find that, following the Games, host cities do not experience a measurable increase in population size relative to cities in the control group. On the contrary, to the extent that any effect of hosting the Games is identifiable, our results indicate that being awarded the Summer Olympics has a negative impact on cities.
Recent international trends towards urban consolidation, intended to reduce outward urban sprawl by concentrating growth within existing neighbourhoods, can cause contention in cities. Understanding how the mass media represents urban consolidation can lead to more informed and democratic planning practices. This paper employs Social Representations Theory to identify and understand representations of urban consolidation in newspaper media. The theory recognises that the media is a key purveyor of public discourse and can reflect, shape or suppress ideas circulating in society. This novel approach has not previously been applied to understanding social representations of urban consolidation strategies in the mass media. The rapidly growing and changing city of Brisbane, Australia, is utilised as a case study. Brisbane is situated in South East Queensland, the fastest growing region in Australia, and is governed by regional and local planning policies that strongly support increased densities in existing urban areas. Findings from a quantitative textual analysis of 449 articles published in Brisbane newspapers between 2007 and 2014 reveal key clusters and classes of co-occurring words that represent dominant social representations apparent in the newspaper corpus. The paper provides two key conclusions. The first is that social representations occurring in mass media represent an important source of information about ‘common sense’ understandings and evaluations of urban consolidation debates. The second is that urban consolidation is represented as a multifaceted issue, including interrelated themes of housing, sustainable population growth, investment strategies and the interplay between politics and planning.
The Graffiti Transformation Project was a City of Toronto, Canada sponsored programme funding ‘marginalised youth’ to paint over graffitied walls with public murals. I argue the imperatives driving the project extended beyond the reaches of policy concentrated on youth remediation, to include concerns of urban governance as a spatial and aesthetic problematic. I explore the manner in which practices of graffiti eradication and community mural making generated a set of calculations that were informed by globally mobile aesthetic norms and were, in turn, aesthetically informing. These calculations were used as an epistemological baseline for assessing, at least at the level of appearance, a host of urban problematics including Toronto’s desire to position itself globally as a functioning multicultural city. Turning to Jacques Ranciere’s thoughts about the space of political aesthetics, I draw on an ethnographic example to tease out a moment of aesthetic engagement in which youth artists interrupted the codes and practices associated with creative city entrepreneurialism to render another configuration of politics, another way of being social. Implications for broadening the scope of urban youth policy scholarship to include analysis of an aesthetic turn are considered.
Over recent decades, cities have been radically transformed by information and communication technologies (ICTs) that modify people’s daily lives by reorganising mobility, infrastructure systems and physical spaces. However, in addition to the role that technology plays in the development of the infrastructure in our cities, it is also being used ‘as a means of control’. This view of technology as a disciplinary tool that restructures space, time and the relations among activities has been promoted by scholars who have shown that technology is also a means of saturating and sustaining contemporary capitalist societies and deepening inequalities. However, the situation is far more complex than that. Technology is not only used top-down but also bottom-up, with individuals using technological devices to share and enhance their visibility in space. This bidirectional paradigm – of vertical surveillance and horizontal sharing – contributes to a sense of ‘being exposed’ in public space that normalises practices of sharing personal data by individuals and thus results in diminished privacy. This argument is supported by an experiment conducted on smartphone users that includes personal interviews and the use of a smartphone Android application that combines online tracking with experience sampling. The findings show a convergence between the online and offline worlds (a ‘public’ situation in the offline world is also considered as such in the online world), which is a condition that contributes to the normalisation of ‘asymmetrical visibility’. Based on these results, the paper ends with a discussion of the contemporary meaning of public space.
Although the investment-oriented development model for economic growth adopted by Chinese governments has generated spectacular results, the risks of debt-financed urbanisation and economic development have recently become evident in mounting local debts that are undermining the financial system, triggering concerns with respect to local governments’ indebtedness, financial stability and sovereign risk in China. In this paper, we portray the uneven spatial and temporal dynamics of local government debt in China, and examine the ways in which it is intertwined with institutional, political and economic factors. Our analysis shows that while global and national economic conditions have resulted in a dramatic increase in local government debt, particularly in the late 2000s and the early 2010s, the spatial variation of local debt accumulation in China could be partly explained by two institutional factors: land finance and inter-jurisdictional competition. We argue that the behaviour of local governments may harm the long-term future of Chinese cities.
This paper estimates the productivity gains from agglomeration economies for a sample of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States using measures of urban agglomeration based on employment density and employment accessibility. The latter is a more accurate measure of economic proximity and allows testing for the spatial decay of agglomeration effects with increasing travel time. We find that the productivity gains from urban agglomeration are consistent between measures, with elasticity values between 0.07 and 0.10. The large majority of the productivity gains occur within the first 20 minutes, and do not appear to exhibit significant nonlinearities.
As recovery from the Great Recession continues, economic development scholars and practitioners are again focused on the pace and the sustainability of recovery, as well as on efforts to minimise the severity of future downturns. This paper contributes to the literature by exploring the relationship between industry diversity and economic resilience over time. Using fixed effects models with data from the Bureau of Labour Statistics and the Census Bureau, the paper examines the influence of industrial diversity and concentration on unemployment rate stability in Ohio counties between 1977 and 2011. Results indicate that while more concentrated counties had lower unemployment rates when times were good, counties with more diverse industry structures fared better during times of national or local employment shocks. The paper also finds that there is a relationship between concentration in particular industries and the ability to withstand a shock changes over the 35 years examined, thus highlighting the need to take care when interpreting findings over shorter periods and the need to consider the particular industry of dependence. While local policymakers have little ability to affect industrial concentration in the short run, the paper recommends that highly concentrated counties adopt policies that may help buffer their economies to effects of negative shocks.
Immigration to Israel by Jews from western countries has been growing over recent years. Jerusalem attracts more of these mainly religious immigrants than any other city in Israel. They are a desired population by the State of Israel, and for many reasons can be considered privileged immigrants. The way Diaspora Jews imagine Israel and Jerusalem plays a crucial role in their decision to move there. Many of these lifestyle/homecoming immigrants find their way to Baka, where they can live near other expatriates and enjoy the comforts of the ethnic enclave. The paper deals with the spatial and cultural implications that privileged lifestyle migration has on the space in which it settles. It focuses particularly on the case-study of English- and French-speaking Jewish immigrants who live in Baka and on their effects on the neighbourhood’s gentrification process, its real estate market and issues of consumerism and belonging.
Given that in-depth place-specific studies are needed for a better understanding of the role of cities in coping with climate change and implementing the energy transition, this paper, based on the case of Lyon (France), brings empirical evidence of how climate and energy are being governed at a city level. A comprehensive understanding of this is achieved with emphasis put on the modes of governing enacted by the local authority, as well as the positioning of the city at broader scales. The framing and localising processes involved in the policy-making process are at the core of this analysis, with a particular focus on two interrelated questions: how are climate and energy making their way as new urban issues that call for specific responses, and how do they reinforce – and are they also reinforced by – metropolitan-wide governance in a context of institutional change?
Employability policies targeting urban job seekers have often had a ‘work first’ focus on quick job entries, neglecting sustainability and progression. This article reviews evidence on ‘what works’, drawing generic lessons from research on locally-focused urban policy initiatives in Great Britain operationalised in the context of persistent worklessness in many cities. The findings highlight the importance of employer engagement to open up job opportunities, recognising the diverse needs of individuals, the significance of personalised support for those furthest from the labour market, and co-ordination of local provision. It is argued that providers need to ensure workless groups have the skills and support to access opportunities created by economic growth. Robust local policy analysis remains challenging but important in the context of limited budgets, payment-by-results and a fragmented policy landscape.
The aim of this paper is to study how women’s privacy needs are met through the physical form of public spaces in both old and new urban designs, using as a case study the city of Nablus, Palestine, which has been significantly influenced by the culture of gender separation. The findings will help develop a better understanding of the relationship between women’s privacy and the physical form of public spaces and will enhance the development of public spaces that women can use comfortably and actively to participate in the urban life. An environmental approach based on the concept of behavioural setting was used to examine women’s privacy issues in the chosen public spaces. Direct observations and questionnaires were used in the fieldwork, in addition to interviews with women and relevant people who influence the women’s privacy. Maps (GIS), sketches and SPSS techniques were used to interpret the data.
Over the past two decades, research has emphasised a shift from city government to urban governance. Such a shift brings about its very own challenges, namely governance gaps, uncertain configurations in governance and a limited capacity to act. In this paper, we argue that the concurrent rise of strategy documents in city administration addresses these challenges. Our central claim is that strategy documents can be understood as a distinct discursive device through which local governments enact aspired governance configurations. We illustrate our argument empirically using two prominent examples that, while showing similar features and characteristics, are anchored in different administrative traditions and institutional frameworks: the city administrations of Sydney, Australia, and Vienna, Austria. The contribution of the paper is to show how strategy documents enact governance configurations along four core dimensions: the setting in space and time, the definition of the public, the framing of the res publica and legitimacy issues. Moreover, our comparative analysis of Sydney and Vienna gives evidence of differences in governance configurations enacted through strategy documents.
Drawing on the literature of post-politics and post-democracy, the literature of neoliberalism as mode of governance and the study of the city of Valencia’s long-standing emphasis on the development of prestige mega-projects of iconic architecture as a means to achieve economic regeneration and urban revitalisation, this paper evaluates the social and economic effects of urban mega-projects and analyses them as conduits of neoliberal globalisation and de-politicisation of the public sphere.
On the one hand, an urban policy based on the use of mega-projects represents a turn from welfarism to entrepreneurialism which, beyond the evident urban transformation and re-imaging, results in an increase in social inequality, the creation of precarious jobs, and an underinvestment in social services.
On the other hand, the mechanisms used to implement mega-projects – including both exceptionality measures and privatisation of management through the creation of semi-public delivery bodies – result in a lack of transparency and democratic control, which in turn lead to more authoritative and privatised forms of decision-making. Moreover, mega-projects – through their focus on expertise and technocracy and a populist politics and discourse constructed around them – play a crucial role in the erosion of democracy and the establishment of a consensual politics where ideological struggle does not exist.
Few studies have examined the link between air cargo and business travel, despite there being a generally accepted understanding that these two variables are inextricably related to each other. This paper examines the relationship between air cargo and business travel at the international level and analyses how these two variables are causally related. Moreover, we break down the sample into three major Australian states (New South Wales, Queensland, and Victoria), as each possesses a distinct flavour in trade and commerce. Utilising Granger causality methods, we have found evidence that there is a direct causal relationship between business travel and air cargo in the short run, and a bi-directional relationship in periods of 12 months and longer. The nature of the Granger causality at the state-level substantially differs from state to state, suggesting that the economic landscape of Australia’s local economy has a significant impact on the air cargo and business travel relationship.
This study explores the amenity value of climate to households in Britain. We employ the hedonic technique and use household panel data to derive the marginal willingness to pay for small changes in climate variables. We analyse both the housing and the labour market. Climate is described in terms of heating, cooling degree and rain days. Evidence suggests that it is the housing market that mainly compensates for climate amenities. According to the results, the relationship between property prices and climate has an inverted u-shape. For the sample, about 50 per cent of the locations are close to the preferred levels of heating and cooling degree days while the results for rain days are more varied. Connecting the results to projections of climate change leads to the conclusion that future developments are likely to move a number of households further away from their preferred climate, thus leading to larger regional disparities.
The development of urban gay villages in England has previously been explored via the conceptual toolkit of the New Economic Geography. While arguably retaining explanatory legitimacy in historical perspective, looking forward its validity is contended to be terminally undermined by changes in broader macro-social trends. The intention of this work is to address a relative lack of attention devoted to broader macro-level processes contributing to the decline or significant re-configuration of urban gay areas. A revised developmental model is presented and considered as part of a transition stage towards a post gay era.
Although there are numerous reasons for real estate analysts to construct spatial housing submarkets, there is little clarity about how this might best be done in practice. The existing literature offers a variety of techniques including those based on principal components analysis, cluster analysis and a range of other statistical procedures. This paper asks whether, given their market expertise and their role in disseminating information, shaping search patterns and informing bid formation, real estate agents might offer an effective but less data intensive method of submarket construction. The empirical research is based on an experiment that compares the predictive of different sets of submarket boundaries constructed by using either standard statistical methods or through consultation with real estate agents and other market analysts. The analysis draws on housing transactions data from Istanbul, Turkey. While the results do not demonstrate the outright superiority of any single method, they do suggest that expert-defined boundaries tend to perform at least as well as alternative construction techniques. Importantly, the results suggest that agent-based methods for delineating submarket boundaries might be used with a degree of confidence by real estate analysts and planners in market contexts where rich micro-datasets are not readily available. This has been one of the constraints internationally on wider adoption of submarket boundaries as an analytical tool.
This paper asserts urban transportation’s centrality to debates on ‘the public,’ the ‘right to the city’ and political mobilisation in cities. The paper begins with a re-reading of Marx and Engels’ oft-cited line in the Communist Manifesto on the ‘idiocy of rural life’. Drawing on the work of Hal Draper, who has argued that Marx and Engels used the term ‘idiocy’ as a synonym for ‘privatised isolation’, this paper pulls from two empirical studies on urban transportation to define what I conversely call ‘the idiocy of urban life’. The first case study looks at two transportation programs in Syracuse New York aimed at helping to get welfare recipients to work. The paper argues that such programs not only marked a sharp departure from the public alternative, but that they were programs that enforced the very idiocy and privatised isolation that so worried Marx and Engels. The second case study looks at the East Bay’s transportation justice movement. The paper argues that one of the organising principles of this movement is a rejection of ‘the idiocy of urban life’. The paper concludes by linking debates over ‘the public’, and struggles against urban idiocy to ongoing debates around the right to the city.
This paper synthesises two models: Savitch and Kantor’s bargaining and the amenity led growth model. Using evidence from Oklahoma City’s recent revitalisation, the argument concludes that leadership serves as a pivotal link between the bargaining table and the construction of new amenities to attract productive labour and improve their bargaining position. The proposed unified model reprises the role for leadership to include providing amenities prerequisite for economic development.
This research examines how regulatory focus, in terms of promotion-prevention discrepancy (promotion level minus prevention level), influences homebuyers’ post-purchase evaluations and experiences. Field study data is collected by questionnaire and structural equation modelling (SEM) is used for data analysis. In China’s urban real estate market, when the level of promotion focus exceeds that of prevention focus, homebuyers have better evaluation of their acquisition, less regret and higher satisfaction. Besides product and service attributes, a house’s investment performance and financial burden are important in shaping purchasers’ regret and satisfaction. The findings also show that some individual and purchase traits influence post-purchase evaluations and experiences.
Research on zoning typically assumes that city planners aim to maximise housing prices with their land use decisions, either explicitly for public choice reasons or implicitly through the approval of land uses that create local net benefits. Noncongruence of school district and municipality borders severs the link between costs and benefits in the eyes of the median voter, however, which could result in excessive residential development and fiscal externalities that lower property values. This paper uses a hedonic approach to indirectly observe the presence of these externalities. Border congruency between school districts and municipalities in Ohio is measured using GIS data and matched with a data set of 56,717 home sales. The hedonic results indicate that noncongruence is associated with lower housing prices, while the degree of noncongruence is positively related. For most school districts, the negative effect of noncongruency dominates. My results are robust and consistent across different model specifications and empirical approaches.
Micro-level studies using individual and household data have shown that residential location choices are influenced by neighbourhood ethnic composition. Using three conurbation samples in the Netherlands – Amsterdam metropolitan area, Rotterdam-The Hague metropolitan area and the country’s largest conurbation, the ‘Randstad’ urban agglomeration – this paper analyses the evolution of neighbourhood ethnic composition as a social interaction outcome of disaggregated household behaviour. The potential ‘tipping point’ in neighbourhood ethnic composition, beyond which ‘white flight’ (or the departure of native or advantaged households) occurs, is tested. The share in neighbourhood population of native Dutch and Western minority did not exhibit the hypothesised ‘tipping’ behaviour in its growth rate with respect to initial share of non-Western minority. This paper argues that the large social housing sector, centralised tax regime, and strong regulatory role of the state in housing and urban planning, are the main explanatory factors for the relative constancy in Dutch neighbourhood ethnic composition.
In this study, we use a large sample from the Beijing Household Travel Survey to build husband-wife dyads, construct variables to measure bargaining power between spouses and place intra-household travel arrangements within a broader institutional framework to analyse relationships between institutions, bargaining power and travel patterns of married men and women. The empirical results reveal that bargaining power does matter in determining intra-household commute arrangements. The overarching institutional framework meanwhile sets boundaries for bargaining, and defines which resources are effective bargaining chips for individuals.
The 2010 earthquake-tsunami in Chile did not just destroy cities and towns. It also revealed how the neoliberal decentralisation of the Chilean state initiated during the Pinochet dictatorship had radically diminished and fragmented territorial planning capacities, representing a major obstacle to the planning and management of the reconstruction process. In the face of this situation, exceptional reconstruction agencies were created, which engaged in the elaboration of master plans, suspending in practice – at least temporarily – existing planning authorities and instruments. These new institutional arrangements were also subject to a number of critiques, sparking moral controversies among different public actors about the contribution of these exceptional governmental agencies to the common good. Drawing on the Chilean example, this article proposes expanding the concept of the state of exception to include cases in which what is reconfigured is not the relationship between the State and the population, but the relationship between the state and its territory, so that exceptional powers can be applied upon a ‘bare land’ rather than a ‘bare life’. To the extent that this different state of exception does not reduce citizens to bodies to be protected and administered, it requires a moral rather than a technical justification.
This paper investigates how the creative economy discourse is interpreted and implemented in the context of Indonesia as a developing country. Our main conclusion is that the discourse is interpreted differently across localities. Bandung appears to be the only locality whose interpretation aligns with the general understanding of a creative economy that emphasises knowledge creation and innovation. This was made possible by the strong support from academia and communities who wanted to experiment with this policy idea. Our study also provides an insight into a creative economy developing not only as a discourse, but also as a workable framework for development policies, in this city. Conversely, other cities seem to pragmatically use the policy idea without considering the local context in a rebranding exercise in order to drive economic development, whereby traditional cultural industries are relabelled as creative despite performing hardly any innovation activities. Despite this, Bandung illustrates that there are possibilities for a developing country such as Indonesia to adopt the vision of a creative economy by reshaping local institutions to support successful experimentation with this new idea.
This paper proposes a theoretical framework to analyse the regionally heterogeneous responses of housing prices and inflation to the monetary aggregates shock and the trans-regional interaction of housing prices and inflation, which has seldom been discussed in previous literature. Using a GVAR (Globe Vector Autoregression) model, evidence based on China’s 35 major cities for this framework is provided. The results show that (1) the housing price shocks have weak positive influence on CPIs (consumer price index); (2) the housing price shocks, especially the shocks in first-tier cities and eastern cities, have strong positive influence on domestic housing price dynamics and housing prices of other cities; (3) monetary aggregates shock has strong influence on the housing prices of first-tier cities and eastern cities, while weak influence on that of central and western cities. CPIs are barely influenced by monetary aggregates shocks. The empirical results are in accordance with the theoretical explanation. Based on empirical results, this paper proposes policy recommendations for stabilising housing prices.
Many studies of neighbourhood change adopt a ‘bookend’ mode of analysis in which a baseline year is identified for a chosen outcome variable from which the magnitude of change is calculated to a determined endpoint typically over bi-decadal or decadal timeframes. However, this mode of analysis smoothes away short-run change patterns and neighbourhood dynamics. The implications of this practice could be far reaching if it is accepted that as neighbourhoods change they are liable to cross a threshold and transition from one state to another in the short- as well as longer-term. In a case study of deprived neighbourhoods in the Greater Manchester city-region, this paper aims to contribute to neighbourhood change debates in two ways. The first is by isolating transition pathways for individual neighbourhoods using annual change data. The second is by testing the thesis that the more deprived a neighbourhood is, the more likely it is to respond with greater volatility to short-run shocks when compared with less-deprived neighbourhoods. Four indicators collected annually between 2001 and 2010 are used to develop a typology of neighbourhood change and a subsequent typology of neighbourhood transition. The analysis exposed 260 different transition pathways that deprived neighbourhoods followed over the study period. Multinomial logistic regression was then used to determine the odds of a neighbourhood undergoing transition along a specific pathway owing to its level of deprivation. The model revealed that the most deprived neighbourhoods were likely to follow more volatile transition pathways compared with the less-deprived neighbourhoods especially during periods of economic difficulty.
Urban authorities and a range of private and civil society actors have come to view housing as a key arena in which to address climate change whilst also pursuing wider social, economic and environmental objectives. Housing has been a critical area for urban studies, but often considered in sectoral terms and work on urban responses to climate change has followed this positioning. By contrast, an Urban Political Ecology (UPE) perspective would position housing in more integrated terms as part of the metabolism of the city. Yet so far there has been relatively little written in UPE about either housing or climate change. This paper therefore seeks to bring UPE into dialogue with the emergent literature focused on governing climate change through housing. It does so through a detailed study of the ‘Retrofit Philly "Coolest Block" Contest’. We argue that this contest highlights the ways climate change is changing the way housing is embedded in the circulations of the city, pointing to changes in who is governing housing, how housing is being governed and who is able to access the benefits of (climate change-branded) action on housing.
The Great Recession unleashed a wave of fiscal stress in the USA, with austerity measures such as spending cuts, service reductions and privatisation predictably taking centre stage. Decades of federal withdrawal from urban policy and funding, combined with state retrenchment, have contributed to a landscape of urban fiscal stress exacerbated by the prolonged effects of the post-2007 recession. This article examines the experience of fiscal crisis in four US cities (Detroit, Dallas, Philadelphia, and San Jose), focusing on the narratives used by city and state government leadership to publicly describe local crises. Shared elements of the framing of urban fiscal crisis in this diverse set of cities provide insight into the unfolding of austerity in local politics. Blame for the crisis has centred less on social spending than in previous crises, and more on local governance failures, public pension commitments, and ongoing global economic precarity. Crisis governance has become widespread, even in fiscally resilient cities, driven by a vision of lean government in a ‘new normal’. While retrenchment effectively shrinks the state through spending cuts and privatisation, the governing power of cities is also being diminished by the narrative of fiscal responsibility reflected in the national move toward public pension restructuring and expanded state interventionism.
The topic of local and community governance has garnered increasing attention from researchers in recent years, with the resulting assessments generally identifying both the advantages and obstacles. On the positive side, collaborative community governance is often viewed as a new participatory space facilitating democratic practices with favourable social and relational outcomes. Conversely, the issues of power imbalances and the continued hierarchical influence of the central government are often cited as obstacles to genuine public engagement and horizontal collaboration among diverse actors. In particular, numerous studies argue that the governance structure and initial motivation exert significant influence over the governance processes and outcomes due to the different prioritisation of goals and strategies. Such considerations demonstrate the need for additional comparative studies in diverse contexts. In addition to addressing the limitation of the existing process-focused evaluations, this study proposes an analytic framework of collaborative community governance that identifies the multiple relationships between institutional setting, governance process and outcomes, and examines two community-building initiatives in Korea. The findings demonstrate that collaborative community governance worked as an experiential incubator for individual transformation, social and relational resource building and political empowerment. The comparative analysis of two different collaborative forms reveals that differences in structure and the mode of communication resulted in building different types of relational capital (bonding vs bridging). The lack of preliminary discussions and arrangement for institutional design is highlighted as a source of problems such as excessive dependency on particular communication modes, opaque system of representation and asymmetrical development of relational resources.
This article aims to develop a comparative framework of analysis to study urban crises, arguing that there is a need to establish the analytical links between ‘everyday life and systemic trends and struggles’, and thus to tie together the insights produced by ‘particularistic accounts’. It examines urban crises as political phenomena and brings the Marxist notion of ‘alienation’ to the centre of attention. We argue that ‘alienation’ – as a universal mechanism facilitating capital accumulation process via dispossession, and as negative mental/emotional implications of dispossession, is useful to establish those analytical links. We identify two domains, urban economic structure and urban political system, where alienation is contained. Public authorities deploy various containment strategies in these domains to govern alienation, and urban crises occur when these strategies fail. The post-2008 wave of urban upheavals could be explained by the failure of roll-out neoliberal strategies, which constitute the basis of our comparative framework.
People with intellectual disabilities or psychiatric disorders who live in ordinary neighbourhoods often have little contact with fellow residents without disabilities. Recent research suggests that we should not strive for warm contacts based on familiarity and shared values between utterly different groups in urban areas. Daily life between people with and without disabilities is described as a process in which boundaries are negotiated. This study builds on that observation. It was based in a middle sized town in the Netherlands and consists of a survey among people with intellectual or psychiatric disabilities and neighbourhood residents (not being support staff or relatives of people with disabilities); semi structured interviews and participant observation. We found that fruitful encounters between different groups depend on built-in boundaries in contacts. Positive encounters occur when roles are clear and boundaries do not have to be negotiated because they are given. Both parties benefit from boundaries and fixed roles: people with disabilities do not need social reflexivity or intricate social skills to find their way in the situation; people without disabilities can end the contact without being rude. In line with previous research we also found that positive neighbourhood contacts are usually light and superficial and result in conviviality rather than long term relationships.
Creative (knowledge-intensive) occupations are now widely seen as a basis for urban economic prosperity. Yet the transitional pathways from a city’s current economy to a more creative economy are often difficult to discern or to navigate. Here we use a network perspective of occupational interdependencies to address questions of urban transitions to a creative economy. This perspective allows us to assess alternative pathways and to compare cities with regard to their progress along these pathways. We find that US urban areas follow a general trajectory towards a creative economy that requires them to increasingly specialise, not only in creative occupations, but also in non-creative ones – presumably because certain non-creative occupations complement the tasks performed by related creative occupations. This creates a pull towards non-creative occupations that becomes ever stronger as a city moves more towards a creative economy. All in all, cities with the most creative economies must undergo an overall diversification of specialised occupations, with a greater diversification rate for creative occupations, and maintain those creative specialisations despite the pull towards a non-creative economy.
This paper explores the extent to which people of different origins, natives and migrants, come together in everyday life in Europe. Instead of looking at overall ‘perceptions’ and ‘stances’, which are context-dependent and mediated through political-ideological currents and discourses as well as broader patterns of prejudice, we focus on sustained close contacts that suggest meaningful and organic relationships. Since it is most often people of migrant background who are blamed for leading ‘parallel lives’ and ‘not integrating’, we chose to focus on them and their interethnic friendships. Moreover, we seek to understand the relevance and role of the neighbourhood context in the development of those relationships. Despite the expressive fears in public discourses about the supposed negative impact of the presence of immigrants and ethnic minorities on social cohesion, our findings indicate that close interethnic relationships are not uncommon in diverse European cities. They further highlight that the neighbourhood context plays an important role in the first years of migrants’ settlement. Relationships in the neighbourhood develop in less formal social settings and are also less demanding in terms of host-country cultural skills on the part of the migrants, thus giving the opportunity to newcomers to develop close interethnic relationships with natives. Finally, the analysis supports the positive role of diversity at the neighbourhood level in the development of interethnic friendships and stresses the importance of the neighbourhood’s socio-spatial characteristics and its location in the wider urban net.
An alternative perspective is provided on the existence of a ripple effect in the UK housing market. In contrast to previous studies, the analysis involves consideration of information on the changes in house prices to which the hypothesis of house price diffusion posited by the ripple effect relates, rather than their levels. In an examination of changes in house prices in London relative to other regions of the UK, directional forecasting methods are employed to establish the extent of the relationship between geographical proximity and comovement across the three month window provided by quarterly data. Consequently, the analysis provides a direct examination of the ripple effect which refers to changes in prices rather than the convergence of levels which has become a feature of the empirical literature. The literature is extended further by both the application of dating techniques to perform the analysis across cycles and phases of cycles (recovery and recessionary periods) in the UK housing market, and the use of data from two alternative house price index providers. Striking results in support of the presence of a ripple effect are noted, particularly for the less commonly considered Halifax price index where the most significant results for comovement with London are exhibited by its contiguous regions. In addition, the cyclical subsamples considered indicate comovement to be greater during upturns, rather than downturns in the market. This is consistent with previous research showing London to correct – that is, exhibit differing behaviour to other regions – during downturns.
In recent years, Chinese crime information has become more transparent and open than ever, thus providing an excellent opportunity for urban crime study by academics. To obtain a better understanding of the spatial pattern of urban crime, the city of Beijing is chosen as a study area and GIS software is employed to collect spatial data. The authors try to establish the quantitative representation of geographical characteristics of crime associated with urban space in order to create a geographical model of urban crime and space. The authors find that the overall spatial distribution of urban crime in Beijing displays a picture of polycentric structure and distance decay, and that the spatial distribution of urban crime has a reference to traffic centres, concentration of urban commerce and population migration. The numbers of suspects and locations where different types of crime happen have inter-annual variation, while both the total number of crime sites and their criminal density within each district are relatively stable. The authors point out that the spatio-temporal characteristics of sites act on both the participants in property crimes and the criminal factors, which will decide whether or not an offender can commit a crime successfully. The hot spots and periods of time of urban crime in Beijing have a close relation to the fact that success in committing a property crime is based on certain conditions of sites and times which appear in Beijing’s environment. In this sense, socio-spatial dialectic provides a better understanding of the dynamics of China’s crime space. Finally, the spatial anti-crime strategies for urban crime and the insufficiency of research are discussed.
Social housing across Western Europe has become significantly more residualised as governments concentrate on helping vulnerable households. Many countries are trying to reduce the concentrations of deprivation by building for a wider range of households and tenures. In England this policy has two main strands: (1) including other tenures when regenerating areas originally built as mono-tenure social housing estates and (2) introducing social rented and low-cost homeownership into new private market developments through planning obligations. By examining where new social housing and low-cost home ownership homes have been built and who moves into them, this paper examines whether these policies achieve social mix and reduce spatial concentrations of deprivation. The evidence suggests that new housing association development has enabled some vulnerable households to live in areas which are not deprived, while some better-off households have moved into more deprived areas. But these trends have not been sufficient to stem increases in deprivation in the most deprived areas.
This article challenges the presumed benevolence of mixed-income public housing redevelopment, focusing on the first socially-mixed remake of public housing in Canada, at Toronto’s Don Mount Court (now called ‘Rivertowne’). Between 2002 and 2012 the community was demolished and replaced with a re-designed ‘New Urbanist’ landscape, including replacement of public housing (232 units) and 187 new condominium townhouses. While mixed redevelopment is premised on the hope that tenants will benefit from improved design and mixed-income interactions, this research finds that many residents were less satisfied with the quality of their housing, neighbourhood design, and social community post-redevelopment. Drawing on in-depth qualitative interviews and ethnographic participant observation, this article finds that tenant interviewees missed their older, more spacious homes in the former Don Mount, and were upset to find that positive community bonds were dismantled by relocation and redevelopment. Challenging the ‘myth of the benevolent middle class’ at the heart of social mix policy, many residents reported charged social relations in the new Rivertowne. In addition, the neo-traditional redesign of the community – intended to promote safety and inclusivity – had paradoxical impacts. Many tenants felt less safe than in their modernist-style public housing, and the mutual surveillance enabled by New Urbanist redesign fostered tense community relations. These findings serve as a strong caution for cities and public housing authorities considering mixed redevelopment, and call into question the wisdom of funding welfare state provisions with profits from real estate development.
Gentrification, or the class-based restructuring of cities, is a process that has accrued a considerable historical depth and a wide geographical compass. But despite the existence of what is otherwise an increasingly rich literature, little has been written about connections between schools and the middle class makeover of inner city districts. This paper addresses that lacuna. It does so in the specific context of the search by well-off middle class parents for places for their children in leading state schools in the inner city of Nanjing, one of China’s largest urban centres, and it examines a process that we call here jiaoyufication. Jiaoyufication involves the purchase of an apartment in the catchment zone of a leading elementary school at an inflated price. Gentrifying parents generally spend nine years (covering the period of elementary and junior middle schooling) in their apartment before selling it on to a new gentrifying family at a virtually guaranteed good price without even any need for refurbishment. Jiaoyufication is made possible as a result of the commodification of housing alongside the increasingly strict application of a catchment zone policy for school enrolment. We show in this paper how jiaoyufication has led to the displacement of an earlier generation of mainly working class residents. We argue that the result has been a shift from an education system based on hierarchy and connections to one based on territory and wealth, but at the same time a strangely atypical sclerosis in the physical structure of inner city neighbourhoods. We see this as a variant form of gentrification.
Although there have been a large number of studies carried out on fluctuations in housing prices, little is known about what causes changes in residential rents, which are inextricably intertwined with urban living standards. This is especially noteworthy in Chinese cities, which are now being challenged by the housing market frenzies. Shift-share analysis is proposed to evaluate all possible triggers of residential rent inflation in three cities during the 2001–2013 period, which covers two distinct monetary policy regimes in China. It is found that the recent rise in residential rent comes as a result of aggregate inflation associated with an expansionary monetary policy since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis and an all-encompassing and stable policy stance should therefore be adopted.
Since the 1980s, Chinese cities have witnessed significant growth, resulting in urban sprawl all over the country. Under the strict land quota system, local government has had to transform its approach of Greenfield development to land consolidation. Under the ‘Increasing and Decreasing Balance’ land use policy, the Shanghai government began to consolidate rural construction land in order to acquire extra quota for state land by transferring development rights from collective land to state land and by establishing a three-level land consolidation planning system. This paper firstly examines the expansion of non-agricultural land in Shanghai since 1990. It explains the policy arrangements of land consolidation from the perspective of property rights transfer between state and collective land. Taking Xinbang Township as an example, this paper examines the roles of various stakeholders in land consolidation, the municipalities, district and township governments, village collectives, local villagers and entrepreneurs, and analyses the impact land consolidation has upon them. The paper concludes with discussion and policy implications of future land consolidation.
Previous studies have found that there is a female disadvantage among rural migrants in the urban labour market in China. It remains unclear whether migrant women also lag behind migrant men in job mobility, an important channel for rural migrants to improve their labour market outcomes. Using data from a large-scale survey conducted in the Pearl River Delta region, one of the most important migration destinations in China, we examine gender gaps in job mobility of rural migrants from 1979 to 2006. Focusing on job mobility, this paper sheds new light on the changing gender dynamics among rural migrants in China. Most of the model results lend support to our hypotheses concerning the gendered job mobility patterns of rural migrants. We find that migrant women are less likely to change jobs for work-related reasons and more likely to engage in family-centered job mobility. Results of fixed-effects models of monthly wage further reveal that the positive effect of work-centered job mobility on rural migrants’ wages is smaller for migrant women. We also find that marriage does not disadvantage migrant women more than men in either work centred or family centred job mobility, and that there is a declining trend of female disadvantage in family-centered job mobility, which all points to the transformative role migration plays for rural migrants.
While scholarship around urban fear has brought forward important insights around the relationship between fear, mobility and social exclusion, questions relating to legal exclusion have largely been left outside the scope of inquiry. In cities around the world there are, however, a growing number of people who are not only de facto excluded from rights to/within the city (based on their gender, class, age etc.) – but de jure excluded based on their non-citizen or ‘illegal’ status in the host country. Drawing upon field work conducted in the Malaysian city George Town this study examines how both regular and irregular Burmese migrants perceive safety and danger in the city and how this, in turn, influences how they navigate urban space. The results of the study reveal how the migrants in George Town navigate the city as a ‘borderscape’ – producing a(nother) geography of fear which does not primarily reflect a fear of crime but rather a fear of state institutional practices, such as police controls, road blocks and raids. This shows, the paper argues, the need to pay attention towards both social and legal exclusions when examining how people in cities around the world are able to access and take possession of urban space.
Parental support, in both financial and non-financial ways, is important in explaining the residential trajectories of young people leaving home. For instance, the influence of parental support on the ability to leave home or enter homeownership is well established. This study adds a dimension by investigating how inequalities in terms of parental background – particularly assets – are spatially articulated. More specifically, we study whether parental background influences the types of neighbourhoods young people leaving home move to. Drawing on the case of Amsterdam, we show that these ‘fledglings’, despite their generally very modest income, disproportionally move to gentrification neighbourhoods. Moreover, fledglings with wealthy parents are even more likely to move to both early gentrifying and expensive mature-gentrification neighbourhoods. Gentrification research should therefore also take into account the importance of middle class social reproduction strategies as well as the potential intergenerational transfer of (financial) resources – rather than merely personal financial situation – in shaping housing outcomes and spatial inequalities of young people leaving home. Drawing on parental support, young people may be able to outbid other households and hence exclude them from gentrifying neighbourhoods. Consequently, parental wealth and other resources can thus contribute to gentrification and exclusion.
Autonomous efforts to improve local business environments have become an increasingly important impetus for economic development. Business improvement districts (BIDs), as one of such autonomous organisations, have clearly demonstrated benefits for promoting commercial areas over the last two decades. When BIDs spread over a city, however, not every commercial district succeeds in establishing BIDs despite some initial efforts. This research examines the types of challenges that these neighbourhoods experience in order to form BIDs. This study is based on census data analyses and in-depth interviews with city employees, BID consultants, executive directors of BIDs and community stakeholders in Los Angeles. The results show that the areas with unsuccessful attempts of BID formation in Los Angeles are relatively low-income immigrant neighbourhoods. Some of these neighbourhoods have struggled with disengaged property owners, spatial conflicts among diverse ethnic groups, immigrants’ skepticism towards government and the chronic presence of informal economic activities. These findings suggest that some disadvantaged neighbourhoods are not adequately informed or organised to form BIDs. Public officials and community workers can support these neighbourhoods by providing direct assistance for the development of collective vision and action among community stakeholders.
This paper looks at how place-making at a historic site via collective memory provokes and embraces issues of memory and representativeness. It examines how the power of place-making knowledge and the power of collective memory compete and negotiate in the city of Gwangju, South Korea. Through the analysis, primarily, of archives and in-depth interviews, the research investigates the case of conflicts surrounding the construction of the Asian Culture Complex in Gwangju. The construction included the demolition of the Byeolgwan, where ordinary protesters were killed in the 18 May democratic uprising of 1980. During public consultations and the consensus-making process, victims developed an adaptive preference and agreed to changes proposed without realising what exactly would happen. The controversy that emerged after they expressed their belated criticism clarified the collective memory of 18 May. Intellectuals challenged the power of the 5.18 organisations, bearing professional knowledge and appropriate manners in debates. The conflict contributed to the re-arrangement of power relations in the city and to the clarification of issues that had not been openly discussed before. The power of mourning and symbolising tragedy, usually located with the victims of such tragedy, is challenged by the power of place-making for the future.
This study aims to empirically test the effects of various housing options, which include renting, owning, living with parents/siblings, living in houses bought by parents and living in staff housing, on fertility decisions of families. This study uses micro-data obtained from the Taiwanese Panel Study of Family Dynamics (PSFD) surveys for the period from 1999 to 2007 to empirically test three hypotheses relating housing options to childbearing decisions. Using families living in rented houses as the control group, we find that homeowners have their first child at an older age, and families living with their parents or sibling become parents at a younger age. The results are robust and consistent after controlling for the district fixed effects and the marriage year fixed effects. We test the housing price shocks on the childbearing decisions for families who were married or bought houses during or after the housing boom period in 1987, and find that the asymmetric housing price effects on fertility decisions are correlated with the marriage event, but not the house purchase event.
This paper forms part of a larger study of the social implications of London becoming the location of choice for the global ‘super-rich’. The study examines how members of new wealth elites organise their day-to-day activities, the impact their growing numbers have on the prestigious neighbourhoods from which they are displacing pre-existing elites, and the disruptive effect they have on previously taken-for-granted mores, networks and places of association. The aim of the paper is to situate this wider study within a geographic and historical context by framing it within the arguments of Piketty, namely that increased levels of inequality since 1980 are best understood not as a secular trend but as signifying a return to the pre-existing conditions that characterised Western society prior to 1914. To analyse the evolution of – what geodemographers have termed – the Alpha Territory in London over a period of 500 years the paper takes Highgate Village as a case study area, identifies the manner in which the Village’s varied housing stock appeals to different manifestations of this Alpha Territory and uses three recent planning disputes to bring to the surface otherwise hidden conflicts between the interests of global capital and the defenders of more traditional elite values. Returning to the issues raised by Piketty, the paper concludes with an analysis of social change through the use of archive material which enables the lifestyles of those who currently occupy Highgate’s most prestigious properties to be compared with those who occupied them a hundred years ago.
A growing body of literature has emerged that examines cities as key sites for socio-technical experimentation with a variety of initiatives and interventions to reduce carbon emissions, upgrade ageing infrastructure networks and stimulate economic development. Yet while there has been a wide survey of global initiatives and attempts to explain the wider processes driving such experimentation (Bulkeley and Castán Broto, 2013) there remains a lack of empirical case study analysis to bring the concepts into context. In this paper we use the concept of urban experimentation as a lens to discuss the political and social ramifications of one such intervention in a city’s energy infrastructure network, with an examination of the Pecan Street smart grid project in Austin, Texas. The ability for cities to manage socio-technical transitions and their inflections by specific locales has been largely neglected in social science research, yet cities around the world are facing similar problems of ageing infrastructures, pressures of resource consumption and demanding shifts towards intermittent renewable technologies. We argue that cities are key arenas for the trialling, testing and development of smart products that can help transition towards a low-carbon economy, however the ‘opening up’ of cities as experimental nodes is contributing to a restructuring in socio-technical urban governance, creating new spaces for private investment while delegating responsibilities for carbon control down to urban citizens.
This article examines urban land conflict in a fragile post-war context, drawing on fieldwork carried out in three informal settlements in Juba, the ‘new’ capital of South Sudan. After the signing of Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005, Juba experienced unprecedented population growth, accompanied by the expansion and proliferation of informal settlements in which land disputes were erupting, in some instances escalating to violence. Contributing to the recent literature on South Sudan that critiques the framing of land conflict in ethnic terms, this article shows that ethnic tensions were not the primary drivers of land conflicts in the informal settlements under study. Using a political economy framework, it adds a new dimension to understandings of land conflict in Juba by identifying the exploitative terms on which powerful figures such as informal settlement leaders, public officials, military actors and local chiefs intervened in informal land transactions at the expense of poorer informal settlement inhabitants. Land conflict was not merely an outcome of these interventions, but also created opportunities for a range of actors to exploit vulnerable inhabitants.
Service delivery in South African municipal areas differs widely across jurisdictional boundaries. The paper illustrates the potential of geo-spatial mapping to quantify and map service delivery inequality at local municipal level in order to differentiate policy interventions. Data from a national 2007 South African survey were analysed to assess absolute levels and relative inequality of service delivery at district and local municipality levels. Not surprisingly, the results showed a wide variation in absolute service delivery levels when comparing richer urban districts to poorer rural ones. Service delivery inequality, however, was low in the richest urban districts, as well as the poorest rural ones. Conversely, service delivery inequality was highest in the more recently industrialised districts that contained both urban and rural municipalities. The scatter distribution of service delivery inequality versus absolute levels of service delivery appears to largely support Kuznets’ (1955) inverse U theory of inequality. Further analysis and discussion of the findings, however, illustrates that urban planners in both rich and poor South African municipalities are confronted with a number of dilemmas.
There is a long tradition of debate about the crisis of cities or the crisis of local government in public, political and scholarly circles. The diagnosis of ‘the urban crisis’ often implies a homogeneous phenomenon with each city facing similar and unambiguous problems. However, we know little about local practices in constructing a city’s crisis. Taking discourse analysis as a starting point, we propose an interpretive and comparative framework that investigates how ‘the urban crisis’ and ‘the city’ emerge interdependently with specific meanings in different socio-spatial contexts. By comparing the discourses of Frankfurt, Dortmund, Birmingham and Glasgow, we illustrate how in each city the meaning of crisis is constructed differently and how these constructions constitute the collective understanding of the particularities of these cities.
The interdisciplinary literature demonstrates that the built form constitutes home when people have capacity to exercise control. Consistent with normative ideas of autonomy and freedom, home is a place where we are free from surveillance; at home we expect to live of our own volition. Freedom and autonomy in the home are contrasted with the public realm, and the value of privacy in the home is central for self-determination and identity construction. In line with such reasoning, surveillance in housing is theorised, and indeed widely assumed, as antithetical to home. This paper presents empirical material to examine how surveillance in supportive housing is understood by those with firsthand experiences as tenants and service providers. The research draws on in-depth interviews with tenants (n = 28) and service providers (n = 22) in single-site supportive housing in Australia. The empirical material demonstrates how surveillance is experienced as intrusive, but that surveillance also promotes the conditions for people to feel safe and to exert control over their lives. The research shows how tenants actively used surveillance as a desirable resource, including using surveillance to restrict unwanted visitors. Surveillance achieved functions, particularly safety and security, that individuals were unable to experience as homeless or achieve in housing through informal controls.
Urban scholars frequently call for equitable and inclusive growth to create more just cities but this vision has proven elusive in urban development – especially involving low-income communities and affordable housing. In 2013, the New York City Housing Authority proposed to leverage private development to benefit low-income residents by supporting market-rate residential construction on open space in public housing sites to pay for needed improvements to subsidised units. The Land Lease Initiative was a seemingly win-win plan but quickly faced backlash from multiple quarters. Using interviews with key housing authority officials and analysis of plan documents and media coverage, we show how the content and framing of the plan stoked fears of displacement, despite stated intentions. Our analysis reveals that criticism overlooked four unconventional ideas for preserving public housing, which are embedded in the plan: (1) retaining all public housing units and high-rise public housing towers on site, as opposed to demolishing them; (2) deconcentrating poverty by increasing residential density, instead of displacing poor residents; (3) adding affordable housing units to the site of low-income public housing; and (4) creating mixed-income communities around buildings, in addition to within them. The findings suggest that the future of affordable housing in the neoliberal era involves blurring the line between preservation and privatisation.
While the regulation of commercial sex in the city has traditionally involved formal policing, recent shifts in many jurisdictions have seen sex premises of various kinds granted formal recognition via planning, licensing and environmental control. This means that ‘sexual entertainment venues’, ‘brothels’ and ‘sex shops’ are now not just labels applied to particular types of premises, but formal categories of legal land use. However, these categories are not clear-cut, and it is not simply the case that changes in the law instantiate a change whereby these premises are brought into being at a particular point in time. Countering the privileging of space over time that is apparent within much contemporary research on sex and the city, this paper foregrounds the varied temporalities in play here, and describes how the actions of those policy-makers, municipal bureaucrats and officers allow sex premises to variously ‘fade in’, accelerate, linger, or disappear as legal land uses within the city. We examine the implications of these different temporalities of the law by exploring how sex premises have been subject to regulation in London and Sydney, showing that the volatile, contradictory and fractured nature of legal space-making does not necessarily provide the certainty sought by the law but produces overlapping and contested understandings of what types of premises should be subject to regulation. More broadly the paper highlights how attention to the contingency and complexity of municipal law can help us better understand the ways that commercial sex is differently manifest in different cities.
The Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation initiated a ‘Lots of Green’ programme to reuse vacant land in 2010. We performed a difference-in-differences analysis of the effects of this programme on crime in and around newly treated lots, in comparison to crimes in and around randomly selected and matched, untreated vacant lot controls. The effects of two types of vacant lot treatments on crime were tested: a cleaning and greening ‘stabilisation’ treatment and a ‘community reuse’ treatment mostly involving community gardens. The combined effects of both types of vacant lot treatments were also tested. After adjustment for various sociodemographic factors, linear and Poisson regression models demonstrated statistically significant reductions in all crime classes for at least one lot treatment type. Regression models adjusted for spatial autocorrelation found the most consistent significant reductions in burglaries around stabilisation lots, and in assaults around community reuse lots. Spill-over crime reduction effects were found in contiguous areas around newly treated lots. Significant increases in motor vehicle thefts around both types of lots were also found after they had been greened. Community-initiated vacant lot greening may have a greater impact on reducing more serious, violent crimes.
Expanding urban populations are inducing development at the edges of Indian cities, given the constraints on land use intensification within municipal boundaries. Existing peripheral towns are becoming anchors for this new growth, creating urban agglomerations. Such areas have become preferred home locations for the working poor and emergent middle class, groups that are often priced out of the urban housing market. However, many such exurban locations lack infrastructure such as durable paved roads and transit, because investments are largely clustered within municipal boundaries. This paper focuses on the Greater Mumbai Region and relies on a cross-sectional household travel survey data set. The objective is to understand how vehicle use is linked to the built environment and socio-economics. Spatial analysis shows that cars are used in urban centres while scooters and motorcycles are used in the exurbs. Estimated censored regression models show that greater household distance from the main employment centre Nariman Point, better job accessibility and improved socio-economic factors increase vehicle use, while land use diversity and density bring down vehicle use. A key econometric result is that after controlling for location, land use, infrastructure supply and socio-economics, the expectation of a motorised two-wheeler or car in a household does not translate to its use. Overall, the findings suggest that policies encouraging higher land use diversity, density and transit supply have the potential to marginally decrease vehicle use in the Indian metropolis. However, future research needs to focus on residential location to better understand how the choices of where to live and how to travel are interconnected.
Identifying changes in the spatial structure of cities is a prerequisite for the development and validation of adequate planning strategies. Nevertheless, current methods of measurement are becoming ever more challenged by the highly diverse and intertwined ways of how people actually make use of urban space. Here, we propose a new quantitative measure for the centrality of locations, taking into account not only the numbers of people attracted to different locations, but also the diversity of the activities they are engaged in. This ‘centrality index’ allows for the identification of functional urban centres and for a systematic tracking of their relative importance over time, thus contributing to our understanding of polycentricity. We demonstrate the proposed index using travel survey data in Singapore for different years between 1997 and 2012. It is shown that, on the one hand, the city-state has been developing rapidly towards a polycentric urban form that compares rather closely with the official urban development plan. On the other hand, however, the downtown core has strongly gained in its importance, and this can be partly attributed to the recent extension of the public transit system.
This paper applies a general spatial equilibrium model to investigate the effect that distance within the urban hierarchy can have on interurban house prices. Our spatial model predicts a negative price gradient towards higher-tier cities, which can be decomposed into a ‘productivity component’ and an ‘amenity component’, representing respectively the effect of wage differences and households’ valuation of access to higher-order services. The theoretical findings are tested on data for the hierarchical urban system of the Pan-Yangtze River Delta in China. Both central and subcentral cities are shown to impose statistically significant distance penalties on interurban house prices, even after we control for amenities and characteristics that are generally considered to be the determinants of house prices. According to the empirical decomposition, the negative house price gradients are largely accounted for by the productivity component.
An important challenge for the research on post-socialist big cities is to identify the mechanisms of their uncontrolled urban space growth. This analysis is focused on the built-up urban space affected by transformations from a centrally planned to a market-based economy. Post-socialist changes in Bucharest are clearly reflected in the dynamics of built-up space. Land cover dynamics were evaluated using spectral mixture analysis of Landsat 5 TM (Thematic Mapper) data to map percent impervious surface area in 1988 and 2010. Change analysis reveals (1) a decrease of built space in central and peri-central areas of Bucharest, (2) an expansion of new residential areas to the south, (3) land fragmentation to the east and southeast, (4) a mixture of densities to the north, and (5) the role of the ring road in spurring recent development. A key challenge facing Bucharest is the disposition and repurposing of the lands covered by old large housing estates and shuttered heavy industries.
This paper examines shifting approaches to urban sustainability in the Arabian Gulf by focusing on the issue of air conditioning and thermal comfort. It considers the recent foregrounding of tradition and heritage within the arena of mega-project development in Qatar, using the Msheireb Downtown Doha Project as an example of a wider regional trend around urban sustainability. Through its focus on air conditioning, the paper draws on Appadurai’s recent critique of design singularity to examine built environment sustainability in relation to the indoor comfort norms and practices, for both bodies and objects, which are now well established across the Gulf region.
Studies in the land use–travel connection have long neglected the role of neighbourhood crime. This paper analyses such a role of crime and explores whether more compact land-use characteristics tend to cluster more crimes, thus having a negative impact on public transit use. A path analysis model is used to estimate the relationship between land use, crime, and bus ridership in the city of Austin, Texas. The results demonstrate that higher population density and more mixed land use may significantly stimulate more crimes near the bus stops while the level of crime may have a nonlinear effect on ridership. Once the number of reported crimes exceeds a threshold level, ridership is negatively affected. As a result, very dense residential and commercial development may trigger a rise in crimes, leading to a fall in ridership. These findings suggest that those who seek to implement land use policies to increase transit use and reduce auto dependence should recognise and evaluate land use impact on crime and how this impact affects travel behaviours.
Peri-urban areas are often subject to intensive construction, through both formal and informal processes. As land transitions from rural to urban status, different land tenure and administration systems may come into conflict, leading to disputes, contestation and, in some cases, violence. However, little is known about the precise causes of peri-urban land conflict. In Mexico, peri-urban growth has historically proceeded peacefully, owing to the control exerted by a corporatist system of government, and the political use of land tenure regularisation. However, the effects of land reforms on transactions at the peri-urban fringe, in the context of wider processes of liberalisation, may be increasing vulnerability to conflict over land. This paper explores these issues through a case study of an irregular settlement on the peri-urban fringe of the provincial Mexican city of Xalapa, where contestations over informally developed land have escalated into violent encounters between groups of settlers and the state. The findings show that vulnerability to conflict in peri-urban areas can be attributed to the interaction of macro-level processes with local-level factors, including diverse claims, overlapping legal and governance frameworks and, critically, local power relations.
This paper is a theoretical exploration of dominant conceptualisations of do-it-yourself urbanism, which draws from and contributes to feminist inquiries into urban planning and policies. Do-it-yourself urbanism is defined as unauthorised, grassroots, and citizen-led urban planning interventions that are small scale, functional, temporary, creative, and place specific; are focused on reclaiming and re-purposing urban spaces; and take place outside formal urban planning structures and systems. This paper questions and complicates the dominant discourses surrounding do-it-yourself urbanism by highlighting the racialised, classed, gendered, and sexualised ‘blind spots’ and biases found within conceptualisations of the topic, its activities, actors, and spaces. It also investigates how do-it-yourself urbanism activities and actors are connected to and embedded in larger urban systems and policies. I argue that the dominant discourses of do-it-yourself urbanism focus on a narrow set of urban planning interventions, which may have major implications for cities and their residents. However, the terrain of do-it-yourself urbanism is diverse, fluid, paradoxical, and at times subversive, revealing bright spots for more inclusive and reflexive practice.
Spatial heterogeneity and spatial dependence are two well established aspects of house price developments. However, the analysis of differences in spatial dependence across time and space has not gained much attention yet. This paper jointly analyses these three aspects of spatial data. A panel smooth transition regression model is applied that allows for heterogeneity across time and space in spatial house price spillovers and for heterogeneity in the effect of the fundamentals on house price dynamics. Evidence is found for heterogeneity in spatial spillovers of house prices across space and time: house prices in neighbouring regions spill over more in times of increasing neighbouring house prices then when neighbouring house prices are declining. This is interpreted as evidence for the disposition effect. Moreover, heterogeneity in the effect of the fundamentals on house price dynamics could not be detected for all variables; real per capita disposable income and the unemployment rate have a homogeneous effect across time and space.
This paper examines the role of culture in shaping and contesting city branding strategies. Throughout the world, the private and public sectors are jointly engaged in branding cities by mobilising a cultural rhetoric with the aim of attracting business, boosting tourism and revitalising urban spaces. Adopting a critical sociological perspective, the paper examines whether or not culture-based city branding brings benefits to community cultural organisations and explores the reasons why this might be the case. Based on the experience of Buenos Aires and drawing on in-depth interviews with both policy-makers and community cultural centres, different notions of culture, underpinning contrasting imagined cities, are discussed. The paper argues that city branding, founded on a commodified notion of culture, driven by profit-making goals and oriented towards international tourism, can create an urban vision of consumption to which cultural organisations are opposed. The paper concludes by showing how a particular entanglement between politics, businesses and urban marketing in the Latin American city gives way to ongoing contestations over the city brand and configures the possibilities and distribution of potential benefits.
Using event history methods we examine the relationship between residential mobility and gentrification in England and Wales. While our models of residential mobility conform to the life-cycle explanations of mobility, we find little evidence of elevated mobility in gentrifying neighbourhoods. This finding is robust across a variety of specifications. We conclude by discussing possible explanations for this counter-intuitive result.
We find that per capita municipal spending on public services is strongly and non-linearly correlated to urban population density. Optimal expenditure levels for municipal services are achieved with densities close to 9000 residents per square kilometre. In our study of about 8600 municipalities of Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Mexico, 85% of all municipalities are below this ideal density level. This result provides strong policy support for densification, particularly in medium-sized cities of developing countries, which are currently absorbing most of the world’s urban population growth.
The last decade has witnessed the emergence and consolidation of new and established gay cities in East and Southeast Asia, in particular, the sexualisation of the Singapore city-state, the commerce-led boom of queer Bangkok, the rise of middle-class gay consumer cultures in Manila and Hong Kong, and the proliferation of underground LGBT scenes in Shanghai and Beijing. In the West, scholarships on urban gay centres such as San Francisco, New York and London focus on the paradigms of ethnicity (Sinfield, 1996), gentrification (Bell and Binnie, 2004) and creativity (Florida, 2002). Mapping the rise of commercial gay neighbourhoods by combining the history of ghettos and its post-closet geography of community villages, these studies chart a teleological model of sexual minority rights, group recognition and homonormative mainstream assimilation. Instead of defaulting to these specifically North American and European paradigms and debates, this paper attempts to formulate a different theoretical framework to understand the rise of the queer Asian city. Providing case studies on Singapore and Hong Kong, and deploying an inter-disciplinary approach including critical creative industrial studies and cultural studies this paper examines the intersections across the practices of gay clusters, urban renewal and social movement. It asks: if queer Asian sexual cultures are characterised by disjunctive modernities, how do such modernities shape their spatial geographies and produce the material specificities of each city?
This paper considers the importance of age in delineating urban space, the latter operationalised as high-density living. Many cities have experienced an increase in inner city living contributing to gentrification. Today, inner cities contain more amenities, public transit and housing options than in the past but there are also growing affordability concerns owing to rising prices. Especially young adults, sometimes dubbed Millennials, are making location decisions in a context of lower employment security, higher costs and continuing high-density re-development that now extends into suburban areas in some cases. The analysis in this paper shows evidence of a youthification process that results in an increasing association of high-density living with the young adult lifecycle stage. The higher density areas remain young over time as new young adults move into neighbourhoods where there are already young people living, and they move out if their household size increases. Youthified spaces have become characterised by small housing units that are not generally occupied by households with children. Additionally, some areas are exhibiting generational bifurcation as both older and younger adults live in some higher density areas. Youthification is driven by a combination of lifestyle, demographic, macro-economic and housing market changes that require further investigation. The youthification process is not replacing, but occurring alongside, gentrification and points to young age as a delineator of high-density living becoming more important over time. However, immigration, measures of social class and household size still remain the most important explanatory variables of high-density living.
In Rio de Janeiro, immobility or the share of people with no journeys on any given day is very high (46%). Immobility has a marked geographical dimension in what is a segregated city. But income has only limited explanatory power. The population structure, with high proportions of people who are not in the labour force and who are unemployed, accounts for the high levels of immobility in the poor districts. Although population structure effects prevail, spatial factors such as the severance effect also account for differences between districts. Indeed, Rio de Janeiro features many different types of barriers that affect immobility in several districts and for several population groups. These barriers may be physical or symbolic and perceptive. This study proposes therefore to identify the scope of those barriers as they affect immobility.
Our findings from the latest household travel survey available for the metropolitan area of Rio de Janeiro (2003) illustrate the effects of the two types of barrier, physical or symbolic and perceptive, on immobility that more specifically mark out certain categories of individuals such as housewives, the elderly, the unemployed or poor workers. Conversely, the wealthier active population seems to be little affected by the two types of barriers under study. Lastly, our results show that social fragmentation does not lead to greater immobility of favela populations in the heart of rich districts, but on the contrary to increased mobility, especially for the working age population in employment or looking for employment.
Local economic development is a much used tool for the regeneration of urban areas. Although the designation and effectiveness of local economic development policies has been studied extensively in existing literature, the question as to whether these policies are aimed at the areas that are most in need of these policies remains relatively understudied. This question has been answered using the case of industrial sites in the Netherlands. This particular type of urban area in the Netherlands has experienced problems with rapid urban area decline and has therefore been targeted by various area-based regeneration initiatives for many years. The economic performance is the main justification for the designation of industrial sites that are in greater need of regeneration. However, another pertinent and unanswered question is: are the industrial sites targeted for regeneration really the ones that underperform economically? (Multinomial) logistic regression analysis is used to answer this question. Differences in economic performance, measured by the growth in employment figures, the number of companies and property values, between industrial sites that are targeted for regeneration in two different rounds of regeneration initiatives and non-targeted sites are studied. The analysis shows that the differences in economic performance are negligible between these groups. It indicates that other criteria, such as political and strategic decision making influence policymakers’ decisions to target industrial sites for regeneration, thus making it at least doubtful that public money for the regeneration of industrial sites is being spent on what it is meant for.
A large body of literature attests to the growing social divide between urban residents and rural–urban migrants in China’s cities. This study uses a randomised experiment to test the effect of intergroup contact on attitudes between a group of urban adolescents and a group of rural–urban migrant adolescents. Results showed that intergroup contact in the form of a fun and cooperative puzzle task significantly reduced negative attitudes toward the other group. Implications for desegregated schooling and their broader societal implications in China are discussed.
Providing formal titles to residents in densely populated informal settlements without fuelling conflict or encouraging gentrification presents several challenges. It has been argued that, in some contexts, forms of collective tenure such as a Community Land Trust may help to overcome some of these problems. This paper analyses one attempt to legalise informal tenure arrangements, minimise relocation and prevent gentrification by introducing collective titling in an informal settlement in Nairobi. The paper demonstrates how attempts to build consensus on the most appropriate tenure system were deeply embedded in local conflicts between existing structure-owners (owners of shacks/buildings on land which is not theirs) and tenants. The state was unable to carry out the land reforms it had proposed – to protect the land user rights of all residents – because they implied a redistribution that was resisted by local elite actors. This paper argues that tenure reforms are shaped by context-specific power relations; in this case the process was characterised by the implementers’ need to maintain fragile agreements with local elites in order to avoid conflict. Tenure reforms are based on different ideas of whose rights should be recognised and competing claims are both negotiated through and shaped by the implementation process. Tenure reforms for contested land in informal settlements not only require technical mechanisms to prevent gentrification and displacement, but must reflect a serious consideration of local power relations and the capacity of the state to deal with conflicts arising from redistributive plans.
This paper examines the role re-location has played in shaping the status of elite and middle-class schools in and around London. A Bourdieusian lens is applied to understand the institutional trajectories of 51 schools which moved from central London out to the suburbs and beyond between the 1860s and 1970s. It is argued that this strategy served to maintain, reinforce and create institutional prestige within the ‘field’ of schools serving the upper and middle classes. These re-locations have had a lasting effect on London’s school system, pushing key institutions of elite social reproduction outwards and away from the city centre. In discussing the motivations for re-location, Bourdieu’s (1996) theory of field and elite formation is used with specific reference to urban change, thus developing a Bourdieusian-historical approach to understanding the geography of social reproduction (Thiem, 2009). The focus on London also sets these re-locations in the context of broader socio-spatial shifts within the British upper and middle classes, in which new social formations were emerging, with an aristocratic-financial elite concentrated in the south-east of England (Anderson, 1964; Rubinstein, 1977). Re-location formed part of a broader process of urban and socio-economic transformation which created a powerful educational infrastructure for the upper and middle classes in and around London.
The aim of this paper is to examine how the postpolitical era of planning has created both binaries and intersections in the reimaging of transport futures and how the latter precipitates a redefinition of democratic transport prioritisation. Focusing particularly on the point in the transport planning process when urban transport priorities are identified, the paper explores how citizens respond to the inherently political, yet not always democratic, aspects of setting transport investment priorities. This relationship is investigated through a single case study of Melbourne, Australia where a six km inner city road tunnel was deemed a ‘done deal’ by elected officials in the lead up to a state election, removing the controversial project from open public scrutiny. Drawing upon ethnographic research and semi-structured interviews with community campaigners opposing the proposed East West Link road tunnel, this analysis reveals how community-based groups and individual residents alike can evolve beyond NIMBY-focused agitation to garner a spatially dispersed re-politicisation of urban transport priorities. While the postpolitical framing of infrastructure delivery introduces a binary between state interventionist planning and citizen opposition, it is the mobilisation of action through the spaces of intersection where new political paradigms for transport planning are created.
Class analysts are often concerned with intergenerational transmission of advantage, mapping the ways in which parental resources foster favourable life-chances for their offspring. However, whether such class-specific resources are accessible to broader communities has scarcely been researched within a framework of class mobility. By combining methodological insights from neighbourhood research with theoretical concerns of class advantage, this study addresses the ways in which the social class composition of adolescent neighbourhoods affects individual educational achievement and class positions in adult life. Marginal logistic regression analyses, using generalised estimating equations, are utilised to analyse the complete birth cohorts of 1965–1967 who grew up in Oslo. The analyses reveal that upper class presence in adolescent neighbourhoods is independently associated with attainment of higher education, elite credentials, and upper class membership in adulthood, and more so for less privileged teenagers. It is suggested that the linkage of class advantage and geographical anchorage should be maintained in further research as it points to important aspects of urban inequality.
While in Mexico City formal jobs are concentrated in the city centre, affordable housing is generally only available in its outer rings. This reduced accessibility to formal employment would suggest that the poor have longer commutes. However, observed travel times show that low-income workers actually have the shortest commutes. Using two linear programming transportation models we found that this is due to the location of informal work activities, which seems to be a function of the residential location of workers involved in the informal sector as a response to the disadvantages of the formal urban structure of jobs and housing that affect the poor.
Urban China reached 50% of the nation’s population by 2010, mainly as a result of massive rural–urban migration. There is substantial evidence of their social marginality in terms of occupational and housing opportunities. Here we ask about their incorporation into the neighbourhoods where they live. Rural migrants are called the ‘floating population’ in China, suggesting that their residence in the city is only temporary and that they are unlikely to develop strong local ties. This study contrasts the neighbourhood socialising of migrant tenants with that of urban homeowners who were born in the city. It draws on original survey research in Beijing that included questions on relations with neighbours and neighbourhood sentiment. It is found that migrants are more likely to engage in socialising and exchange of help with neighbours, and consequently their neighbouring helps strengthen their sentiment towards the neighbourhoods where they live. It is argued that contemporary social changes – including rising education and homeownership – may actually reduce neighbouring, while rural migrants’ marginality makes them more dependent on their local social network.
‘Borrowed size’ is an emerging policy concept in several European countries, presenting theoretical potential to explain contemporary urban dynamics unaddressed through conventional urban growth theories that emphasise the role of agglomeration economies. In its original conceptualisation by Alonso, the concept describes and explains the situation that especially smaller cities that are located in a larger ‘megapolitan complex’ do perform better because they have access to agglomeration benefits of larger neighbouring cities. This paper scrutinises the concept of borrowed size, thereby focusing on its conceptualisation and reviewing its empirical justification thus far. Our empirical analyses show that the concept must be stretched in terms of scale and scope to enhance its policy value. Borrowed size occurs when a city possesses urban functions and/or performance levels normally associated with larger cities. This is enabled through interactions in networks of cities across multiple spatial scales. These networks serve as a substitute for the benefits of agglomeration. Theoretically, the borrowed size concept demands a recasting of the geographical foundations of agglomeration theory.
This paper is concerned with spatial effects of time on the market for residential property and time varying relationships using a dataset of properties from the Adelaide metropolitan area, Australia, during the period 2002–2011. The analysis firstly considers the spatial dependence in time on the market and secondly extends the analysis to a space-time model using 2SLS regression. The findings demonstrate the complexity in spatial analysis with results indicating a random distribution of time on the market in 86% of observations a pattern that is consistent over time. Spatial autocorrelation is shown to increase time on the market in the subject property while spatial error decreases time on the market in the subject property suggesting a high level of market transparency and improved liquidity. The compensating or nullifying effects of both types of spatial association is shown to contribute to the random distribution observed in time on the market. A strong explanatory capacity of the business cycle suggests that economic drivers are leading time on the market rather than prices.
The technological vision of smart urbanism has been promoted as a silver bullet for urban problems and a major market opportunity. The search is on for firms and governments to find effective and transferable demonstrations of advanced urban technology. This paper examines initiatives by the UK national government to facilitate urban technological innovation through a range of strategies, particularly the TSB Future Cities Demonstrator Competition. This case study is used to explore opportunities and tensions in the practical realisation of the smart city imaginary. Tensions are shown to be partly about the conjectural nature of the smart city debate. Attention is also drawn to weakened capacity of urban governments to control their infrastructural destiny and also constraints on the ability of the public and private sectors to innovate. The paper contributes to smart city debates by providing further evidence of the difficulties in substantiating the smart city imaginary.
In this paper, I argue that careful attention needs to be paid to the handling of urban CCTV digital data. Since the early 1990s, CCTV has left an indelible mark on UK cities, and beyond. CCTV is a crime-reduction strategy, and its activation owes much to the laws and regulations that govern its function and the passivity with which it is often viewed. I consider the nature of security when CCTV signs, recorded images and the rights of citizens are interlinked in controlled urban spaces. Despite the regulatory powers of the Data Protection Act, the management of CCTV data is at times poorly operationalised and often obfuscated. The paper discusses my experiences of identifying 17 different CCTV cameras and being recorded, and my attempts to access my images through subject access requests (SARs). In what follows, I draw on different topologies of experience in expanding upon the mutable, unpredictable and intensive relations that guide the management of CCTV data.
We study the choice of dwelling units in a condominium complex, a problem that has not been thoroughly investigated in the housing research literature. We take a revealed preference approach to quantify home buyers’ preference toward attributes associated with a dwelling unit. In particular, we estimate a mixed logit model using the hierarchical Bayes approach based on the Markov Chain Monte Carlo method. We derive the willingness to pay measures for detailed attributes associated with a dwelling unit including its floor level, orientation, location in the complex, location on a floor level, and the type of bathrooms. We also find strong evidence for the preference heterogeneity among home buyers and conduct regression analysis to explain the preference heterogeneity using home buyers’ socioeconomic characteristics. Our results show that home buyers with older ages and higher annual household income tend to focus more on the quality of the dwelling units, while first-time home buyers are more willing to accept dwelling units with less-desirable attributes.
The structure of transportation networks and the patterns of accessibility they give rise to are an important determinant of land prices, and hence urban spatial structure. While there is ample evidence on the cross-sectional relationship between location and land value (usually measured from the value of improved property), there is much less evidence available on the changes in this relationship over time, especially where location is represented using a disaggregate measure of urban accessibility. This paper provides evidence of this dynamic relationship using data on home sales in the Minneapolis-St Paul, MN, USA metropolitan area, coupled with disaggregate measures of urban accessibility for multiple modes, for the period from 2000 to 2005. Our investigation tracks the effects of marginal changes in accessibility over time, as opposed to static, cross-sectional relationships, by using an approach in which the unit of observation is a ‘representative house’ for each transportation analysis zone in the region. This approach allows us to control for changes in structural attributes of houses over time, while also isolating the effect of changes in accessibility levels. Results of this approach are compared with a cross-sectional model using the same variables for a single year to illustrate important differences. Empirical estimates indicate that while most of the models estimated using a cross-sectional specification yield positive and significant effects of accessibility on sale prices, these effects disappear when the models are transformed into first-difference form. We explain these findings in light of the state of maturity of urban transportation networks.
The paper investigates the impact of ethnic segregation on the life chances of low-income African American and Latino children, focusing on whether it is the ethnic composition of the neighbourhood per se that matters or other, correlated aspects of the residential environment. The approach links the consequences of segregation and neighbourhood effects literatures by arguing that metropolitan segregation forces directly shape children’s intra-neighbourhood ethnic exposure and indirectly shape their exposure to non-ethnic aspects of neighbourhood. Associations between a wide range of neighbourhood characteristics and children’s health, exposure to and engaging in violence, educational and fertility outcomes are quantified using a natural experiment, thereby permitting valid causal inferences. Data analysed come from a retrospective survey of Denver (CO) Housing Authority (DHA) residents. The analysis avoids parental geographic selection bias because DHA’s assignment of households to neighbourhoods mimics a random process. Logit models stratified by ethnicity show that growing up amid concentrations of African American residents is associated with a variety of adverse outcomes for low-income Latino and (especially) African American children, though outcomes associated with concentrations of Latino residents are more mixed. Virtually all of the negative associations disappear, however, when other aspects of the residential context are controlled, and several positive ones persist. The adverse developmental consequences of ethnic segregation appear to be generated primarily in Denver by concentrating minority children in neighbourhoods with higher rates of property crime and lower occupational prestige.
We estimate non-cash income from owner-occupied housing, subsidised rental housing, and free use of the main residence, and evaluate their impact on the household income distribution and selected inequality measures. We use a novel data set that provides inter-subjective information on housing quality, thus eschewing selection problems. We confirm the standard finding in the literature that imputed rents accruing to home owners have an equalising effect on the distribution of income and find similar evidence for non-cash income from subsidised rents. Whereas imputed rents equalise the upper part of the income distribution, subsidised housing has an equalising effect on the lower part of the income distribution. Overall, the effect of non-cash income from owner-occupied housing clearly dominates the distributional effects, which translates into a combined effect of around 13% higher equivalised household income for the bottom half and around 8% for the upper half of the distribution. Our data provide us with two rare opportunities: to distinguish between council and cooperative housing, and to apply all three approaches used to calculate imputed rents for owner-occupiers: the capital-, the self-assessment and the equivalent rent approach. We find that using the equivalent rent approach leads to the strongest reduction in income inequality. This suggests that, while the inequality reducing effects of imputed rents are robust, they might be overestimated in the literature.
This article investigates discrimination and the interplay of residential and ethnic stigma on the French housing market using two different methods: paired-testing audit study of real-estate agencies and face-to-face interviews with real-estate agents. Findings lead to a paradox: interviews reveal high levels of ethnic discrimination but little to no residential discrimination, while the audit study shows that living in deprived suburbs is associated with a lower probability of obtaining an appointment for a housing vacancy but ethnic origin (signalled by the candidate’s name) has no significant discriminatory effect. We have three priors potentially consistent with this apparent paradox and re-evaluate their likelihood in light of these findings: (1) agents make use of any statistical information about insolvency, including residency; (2) there are two distinct and independent taste discriminations, one about space and one about ethnicity; (3) these two dimensions exist and complement each other.
Access to a highway is an important issue for distribution centres. In the Netherlands, distribution centres are located at only two kilometres from a highway, on average. This paper estimates the impact of highway proximity on distribution centres’ rents by using hedonic pricing techniques. We show that a one kilometre increase to the nearest highway decreases rents of an average sized distribution centre by about 11,000 euro per year. The distance to the geographic centre of the whole country is also shown to affect rents. For other types of industrial real estate, similar results are found. Based on our results, policymakers responsible for spatial planning or economic development may be able to make better decisions when developing new distribution centres.
Although heterogeneity exists, Western countries can generally be characterised by a more individualistic orientation, whereas China is a more collectivist-oriented society that is undergoing a transformation. This empirical study examined socio-cultural differences between cities in China and the Netherlands in terms of companionship and urban meeting places on the basis of activity diary surveys conducted in the metropolitan areas of Beijing and Utrecht. The focus was on activity decision-making in daily life, especially on the meaning of ‘feeling at home’. Companionship and relevant meeting places were controlled for socio-demographics, analysed and compared in both metropolitan areas. The results show that in Beijing, the majority of activities are undertaken with members of the nuclear and extended family, and the home (‘haven’) is a place for intimate contacts with family members. In Utrecht, the share of individual activities and activities undertaken with friends is much higher than in Beijing, and the home (‘heaven’) is open for contacts with self-selected friends. The modelling results indicate that socio-cultural differences work through various socio-demographic variables, such as gender, family structure and educational level, providing some insights for policymakers.
Migration, mobility, globalisation and individualisation have transformed the way people relate to space by affecting their physical, social and emotional bonds to place. Yet, does it mean that place attachment is due to wane and that the neighbourhood does not matter nowadays? The article is tackling this question by addressing the underexplored neighbourhood attachment and the residential choices of young middle-class families in Montreal Census Metropolitan Area. Empirical results are drawn from in-depth interviews with immigrant and non-immigrant households in a comparative perspective between a peri-urban and near-suburban neighbourhood in recent ethnic transition. We explore three types of neighbourhood attachment: physical and social as underlined in the literature, but we also suggest the importance of accounting for the symbolic dimension of neighbourhood attachment. Findings reveal how families display neighbourhood attachment through an extensive use of neighbourhood amenities (physical), embedded social ties (social) and distinctive lifestyles convergent with the representations of middle-class family life (symbolic). Unlike narratives of middle-classes’ place detachment and withdrawal from neighbourhood life, our case study of ‘middle’ middle-class neighbourhoods suggest that the neighbourhood preserves its importance, but that neighbourhood attachment takes different forms and that these forms differ among urban and suburban families. It is argued that what residents believe urban and suburban life should be and their values and identities associated with it needs further investigation, given their considerable role in neighbourhood attachment and residential choices of middle-classes families.
This paper establishes and evaluates the efficiency of three restrictive measures adopted by the government to contain housing prices: restricted bank loan (xiandai), restricted sale price (xianjia) and restricted housing purchase (xiangou). Based on the data envelopment analysis non-controllable variable model, the efficiency of the three measures to mediating housing prices among 35 major cities are examined. It is found that xiangou is more efficient than xianjia and xiandai to achieve stabilising goals in the housing market. The findings of this research could provide the government with a benchmark to estimate the possible outcome of different restrictive measures containing property prices, in the context of the global overflow of liquidity over the past decade.
Why are some regions more entrepreneurial than others? This study explores the determinants of manufacturing entrepreneurship at the prefectural city level in China by highlighting the influence of localisation and urbanisation economies and the significance of technological relatedness and small firm clusters. Descriptive analysis has reported significant and increasing spatial variation of manufacturing entrepreneurship in China during 2001–2007. The empirical results based on the negative binomial model provide evidence to support the business network view of entrepreneurship. Localisation economies can predict entrepreneurship well, while the effects of urbanisation economies are mixed. In terms of localisation economies, supplier/customer linkages play a very important and positive role in cultivating entrepreneurship. The mixed results of urbanisation economies are mainly derived from the interweaving of related variety and unrelated variety. The former significantly promotes entrepreneurship, while the latter in most cases discourages entrepreneurship. The clustering of small firms has a larger effect on entrepreneurship, which is consistent with the view of Vernon and Chinitz effect.
Poor urban air quality in China has received global attention. This article analyses the extent to which the urban form of all provincial and prefectural cities in China affects urban air quality. A geographically weighted regression model was used to quantify the relationship between the urban form indices, as well as the satellite-derived pollutant column density of NO2 and SO2. The results show that urban form has a significant effect on the urban air quality in China. The effect of urban form on air quality varies among the cities in this vast region. The compact ratio index is negatively correlated with both NO2 and SO2 column density for most of the cities. An ‘X’- or ‘H’-shaped city has less air pollution than a rhomboid-shaped city when the city is located in northern or central China. In comparison, the fractal dimension index is not a statistically significant predictor of air quality. Urban form can have effects on air quality that are equivalent to some meteorological and socioeconomic factors.
China’s new development wave since the mid-1990s is distinguishable by its strong urbanism. Urban governments, particularly at municipal and county levels, rushed to build industrial parks. Urban landscape was also fundamentally transformed by their massive investments in infrastructures – both residential and commercial properties. How to explain local governments’ continuing drive for development? Why has this particular policy combination gained traction among local officials? We approach these questions by making a simple assumption about local governments as revenue maximisers. Their desires for more revenues are constrained by two institutional changes. Vertically, the central government recentralised the fiscal system, leaving local governments in fiscal shortages. Liberalisation and regional competition in the late 1990s further exacerbated their revenue imperative. The land regime provided the final institutional link that enabled local officials to leverage urban infrastructure and real estate for industrial expansion. This study can shed some light on the ongoing debate about China’s development model in the urban literature.
Expanding employment opportunities for citizens has become an increasingly central goal of public policy in the United States. Prior work has considered that the inability of households to spatially access jobs may be a driver of unemployment. The provision of public transportation provides a viable policy lever to increase the number of job opportunities available to households. Previous research has yielded mixed results regarding whether household location is an important factor in determining employment status. Several papers have identified mobility as a limiting factor for obtaining a job, particularly in regards to private vehicle ownership. The location of economically developed neighbourhoods and the citing of public transportation are conceivably codetermined, presenting an endogenous relationship. It is therefore unclear if public transportation access is actually contributing to neighbourhood job market outcomes. This paper will use the incidence of Hurricane Sandy striking New York City on 29 October 2012 and the resulting exogenous reduction in public transit access to particular neighbourhoods as a natural experiment to test for the effect of public transportation on employment outcomes. This study identifies a significant causal effect linking public transportation access to neighbourhood unemployment rates, particularly amongst subgroups dependent on public transit.
When optimising the overall commuting pattern for a city or a region, there are often winners and losers among commuters at the subdivision level. Losers are those who are burdened with longer commutes than before the optimisation. Knowing who or where losers are is of interest to both researchers and policy-makers. The information would help them efficiently locate losers and compensate them. Few, however, pay attention to such losers. By revisiting ‘excess commuting’ in the economic framework, we show that optimising the commuting pattern is comparable to restoring Pareto optimality in commuting. Using Beijing as a case study, we identify and geo-visualise the losers when the city’s bus commuting pattern is optimised. We examine the severity of the loss among the losers, the spatial pattern of the losers and their influencing factors. We find that most losers are located around the epicenter. The severity of the loss is independent of jobs/housing ratio but is associated with the commute distance before the optimisation. Workers whose commute distance is less than the global average are more likely to become losers. Places where losers reside have significantly lower employment density in a few industries than where non-losers reside. A low jobs/housing ratio in individual subareas does not necessarily increase the average trip length of commuters therein. A low jobs/housing ratio of one or several subareas, however, could influence the average trip length of all the commuters in the area. Locating diverse jobs and housing opportunities around or along transit corridors could compensate the losers and reduce the overall commuting cost.
Increasingly, planning for housing development involves political conflict between local government planning practices, based on urban sustainability and housing intensification, and central government housing policies, centred on land supply and housing affordability. This paper examines a key historical moment in the politics of housing supply and planning in New Zealand. Drawing upon a discourse analysis of a range of housing policy documents and urban plans, this paper traces the dynamic of local and central government negotiations and conflict arising from the development of Auckland’s spatial plan, the development of the Auckland Housing Accord (a central and local government agreement to fast-track planning permission for new housing) and the implementation of the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act. The paper focuses on the manner in which certain policy knowledge is prioritised and applied in the construction of affordable housing policies and how this process, which is presented as objective evidence-based policy formation, is inherently political. It is argued that the legislation supporting housing accords alters central/local government power relations and represents a challenge to the existing planning system.
This article reviews a decade of co-housing studies and publications, to identify major themes and research gaps. Generally, co-housing is seen as a promising model for urban development, and most empirical case studies report active and diverse communities, creating and maintaining affordable living environments. However, numbers are small and there is as yet no quantitative evidence to substantiate the claims. Nevertheless, important lessons can be drawn from co-housing as an integrated practice to meet today’s societal and environmental challenges. Rather than its utopian ambitions, the frictions with current institutional frameworks point the way to transform these into more adequate agents of development.
Research on US cities has connected the concentration of public transit with various neighbourhood outcomes, but it remains unclear whether public transit was more attractive to lower or higher income households. Some research found neighbourhoods with public transportation were more attractive to lower income households, likely because such households could not afford private transportation. Closer examination suggested that the type of transit was important, as lower income households were more likely to use buses while higher income households were more likely to use rapid transit. A key limitation of existing research on transit and neighbourhood household income was that it did not adequately control for variation over time. The current study addresses this limitation by assessing how the concentration of subway and bus stops predicted variation in median household income in New York City during the 2000s. Results of cross-sectional regressions partially confirm the findings of previous research that lower income households corresponded to areas characterised by higher concentrations of bus stops. Longitudinal results, however, indicate that the concentration of different forms of transit was uniquely associated with changes in neighbourhood median household income, independent of other neighbourhood changes.
Most existing research on the impacts of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) on neighbouring property values is limited in terms of providing causal attribution and uncovering nuances in the role of housing market and neighbourhood composition. This article addresses these shortcomings by investigating the impacts of the LIHTC program in Charlotte, North Carolina and Cleveland, Ohio. Levels and trends in housing prices before and after LIHTC developments in neighbourhoods are examined based on parcel-level housing sales data from 1996 to 2007. The Adjusted Interrupted Time Series-Difference in Differences (AITS-DID) model is used to clarify the causal direction of impacts of LIHTC developments. The results show that LIHTC developments have negative impacts in Charlotte, while having upgrading effects in Cleveland. Also, these impacts vary across neighbourhoods’ income heterogeneity. Thus, care should be taken when siting LIHTC developments to minimise negative impacts and enhance its use for community revitalisation across different housing market conditions.
Our purpose was to determine the relative importance of individual- and park-related characteristics in influencing both local park use and specific engagement in active sports, walking and sedentary pursuits. We surveyed 3815 adults living within 0.80 km of one of 24 study parks in four US metropolitan areas. Chi-square statistics and baseline-category logit models examined how perceived safety and park characteristics were related to park visitation and types of park activities, controlling for city, individual and park characteristics. Survey participants who perceived the parks as safe (88%) had 4.6 times the odds (95% CI 3.5–6.0) of reporting having visited the study park. Men and African Americans were more likely, and older individuals and those who self-reported being in fair or poor health less likely to perceive parks as safe. Parks having low incivilities scores and those with four or more different facilities, such as tennis courts, swimming pools, basketball courts, etc., were more likely than parks with fewer facilities to be perceived as safe. While park facilities had a much smaller odds ratio for predicting park visits (1.8), it affected 70% of the population. The implication is, if these associations are causal, modifying park facilities may have a greater population impact than improving perceptions of park safety. Our findings are consistent with studies suggesting that increasing the variety of park facilities and offering more organised activities may encourage physical activity among specific target groups.
Social housing providers in many advanced economies have been directed towards market-orientated and commercial business models, whereas the scope of the private rental sector has been increasingly expanded to the provision of housing for low-income households. Where these developments coincided, the demarcation between the activities of social and private landlords has blurred, with the result of increasing competitive pressure on both groups. This paper sheds light on the behavioural aspects of competition by introducing the concept of inter-landlord rivalry in local rental housing markets. Drawing on data from 36 in-depth interviews with social and private landlords in Coventry/England and Breda/the Netherlands, this study shows that existing perceptions of rivalry among most landlords are exceptional in low-income renting but pronounced in more expensive, commercial rental segments. The paper will demonstrate that these perceptions are highly subjective and non-reciprocal. Moreover, competitive perceptions and interactions are strongly affected by political and market structural settings, and appear to be dependent on the trade-off between the social mission and commercial goals of individual housing associations in the social housing sector.
Over the course of the past two decades, bicycling has become increasingly popular in the USA. Although the rate of bike trips made in the USA has more than tripled since 1977, it is relatively low compared with many European cities (Pucher et al., 2011a). In urban areas throughout the USA, bicycling is increasingly being touted as an environmentally friendly way to enhance transit choice as public transportation budgets are slashed and automobile infrastructures remain congested. Discourse around the proliferation of bicycling infrastructure development in American cities often obscures complex aspects of community-level choice regarding transit, including the placement and implementation of bike lanes.
This paper seeks to explore the dynamic ways that community members and city planners make sense of bike infrastructure development in Chicago, Illinois. Qualitative interviews and participant observation were employed to clarify the community context of bike lane development in a gentrifying area of the city. We find that community engagement is a critical component of promoting the acceptance and use of bike infrastructure and discuss the role of a community bike shop in facilitating community engagement around bicycling in the neighbourhood of Humboldt Park, home to the second largest Puerto Rican community in the USA.
Colombian metropolises face a rapid transformation of public and private death spaces because of land scarcity, a demographic transition and a changing market for dead-disposal services. Based on case studies conducted in Bogotá and Medellín, within a Latin American context, this paper analyses the interplay between local governments and enterprises in the deathscape transformation process. The aim is to assess the effects on cemetery users, particularly the bereaved. Analytically, the paper differentiates between publicly and privately governed cemeteries and between older, inner-city graveyards and newer, suburban park cemeteries. The paper sustains that the old dichotomy of elite versus pauper cemeteries is replaced by a contrast between monumental cemeteries that are used for cultural events and suburban cemeteries that function as efficient repositories. In both cases, efficient management of the physical structures, whether as heritage or as recyclable repositories, seems to prevail over the demand for sensory connections between the dead and the living. ‘Time’ might still distinguish those illustrious dead – who are not allowed to be removed – from those who are removed or recycled. Even their relatives are gradually relegated to ephemeral space as tourist events take over. Hence, regardless of the differences between public and private cemeteries and between inner-city and suburban typologies, the rationalisation process affects the bereaved. They become bystanders in the new temporal-spatial patterns that govern Colombian metropolitan deathscapes.
Over the last decade the English planning system has placed greater emphasis on the financial viability of development. ‘Calculative’ practices have been used to quantify and capture land value uplifts. Development viability appraisal (DVA) has become a key part of the evidence base used in planning decision-making and informs both ‘site-specific’ negotiations about the level of land value capture for individual schemes and ‘area-wide’ planning policy formation. This paper investigates how implementation of DVA is governed in planning policy formation. It is argued that the increased use of DVA raises important questions about how planning decisions are made and operationalised, not least because DVA is often poorly understood by some key stakeholders. The paper uses the concept of governance to thematically analyse semi-structured interviews conducted with the producers of DVAs and considers key procedural issues including (in)consistencies in appraisal practices, levels of stakeholder consultation and the potential for client and producer bias. Whilst stakeholder consultation is shown to be integral to the appraisal process in order to improve the quality of the appraisals and to legitimise the outputs, participation is restricted to industry experts and excludes some interest groups, including local communities. It is concluded that, largely because of its recent adoption and knowledge asymmetries between local planning authorities and appraisers, DVA is a weakly governed process characterised by emerging and contested guidance and is therefore ‘up for grabs’.
This study compares a conventionally used panel data model – that does not allow for regional variations in housing price dynamics – with panel models that let the dynamics differ across regions. We concentrate on examining the momentum dynamics and the reversion speed towards the fundamental price level. Based on data over 1988–2012, the results indicate that the regional differences are generally quite small in the Finnish market. Nevertheless, in several cities the dynamics differ significantly from those indicated by the baseline model that does not allow for regional variation. In addition, the long-term coefficient on income considerably varies across regions, the coefficient being greater in the more supply-constrained cities. The results indicate that the use of panel models that assume similar housing price dynamics across regions can lead to flawed conclusions being drawn.
With an understanding that organisations in a city are spatially located and that the geographical distribution of their resources is uneven, this paper examines how neighbourhood characteristics affect the spatial dimension of one basic resource in particular: organisational legitimacy. Specifically, we investigate how the presence of immigrants, the presence of youth and the degree of residential mobility in a neighbourhood may influence collective frames among its residents on what constitutes appropriate and suitable organisational forms. Employing multilevel analysis on data about the voluntary leisure organisations of immigrants in Amsterdam during three periods of time, we consider whether these neighbourhood characteristics do indeed have an impact on the number of organisations to be found and on their vitality. We conclude that an immigrant presence reduces the spatial dimension of organisational legitimacy, which consequently decreases organisational density and survival rates; a youth presence has the opposite effect; and the degree of residential mobility has no significant effect.
Urban neighbourhood has become a conspicuous arena of policy intervention in China, since the central government intensively promoted a Shequ system to strengthen its infrastructure power at neighbourhood level in the 1990s. As recent researches give increasing discussions to the roles different actors play and the division of responsibility within institutional procedures of Shequ, few empirical studies have been carried out to explore the everyday governing process and the stories happening at the receiving end of governance. This research uses a Foucauldian governmentality framework to critically analyse the Shequ institutions’ governing technologies in their everyday practices, and how these technologies succeed or fail to shape citizens’ conduct. Empirical evidences from the case study portray a hybridising scenario, in which the Shequ institutions embrace both the Maoist and Confucian discourses to cultivate active and responsible citizens. Nevertheless, residents’ divergent reactions to the government mobilisation suggest a process in which citizens develop their own ways to internalise or refuse the government interventions which aim to regulate their conduct. This paper concludes by suggesting that giving its materials of stories about the implementers and receivers of government discourses, neighbourhood governance can make important contributions to governmentality research in regards to the topics around the state’s power exercise at the grassroots society and citizens’ struggle around subjectivity.
At times, local politicians are described as barriers to interlocal cooperation; however, recent studies show elected officials are active in interlocal networks and harbour diverse motivations for their involvement in interlocal politics. This research introduces institutional role theory to the study of interlocal politics. Using a survey of elected officials in the San Francisco Bay Area, support for various roles in interlocal politics are assessed in relation to the scope of elected officials’ concerns about the use of interlocal agreements, as well as variables related to institutional context. Exploring elected officials’ concerns about interlocal agreements and the roles they undertake in interlocal politics sheds light on the democratic underpinning of metropolitan civil society and highlights new research opportunities at the intersection of public administration, political science and urban studies.
Nostalgia has historically been negatively characterised by desire to reconnect with an idealised past lost to the ‘destructive’ forces of modernity, but studies across the social sciences have recently sought to re-appraise the creative and embodied significance of individuals’ recollections. This paper contributes to this developing debate by empirically exploring the value of individual remembering in relation to the urban material landscape. First, drawing on recently collected go-along data from long-term residents of two UK cities, Birmingham and Coventry, it is argued that nostalgia could be considered a more progressive force in urban life, especially amongst residents in cities that have undergone and are undergoing physical change as a consequence of ‘official’ attempts to reconstruct, regenerate and/or repackage particular urban spaces; developing a richer understanding of the interplay between official and unofficial nostalgias can better inform planning decisions that are more likely to be socially acceptable and supported by local communities. Second, though there are clear advantages of developing a fuller theoretical and methodological consideration of urban nostalgia, this paper then uses go-along data to demonstrate that much remains to be learnt from exploring how the material urban environment can encourage and/or limit individual efforts to keep potentially distressing aspects of their past concealed.
The problems of violence in Latin America are often reiterated, yet understanding how and why violence declines is far less common. While urban violence takes different forms and has a range of motivations, we suggest that strengthening political and social institutions are important in violence reduction processes. We examine this using a comparative analysis of two cities which have recently seen unusual and marked reductions in lethal violence: Bogotá in Colombia and Recife in Brazil. Drawing on primary data collection, the case studies suggest that novel leaders who take advantage of critical junctures can deliver unexpected improvements to public security; and improvements are linked with institutionalising progressive security policies, increasing accountability of political institutions, and social reforms encouraging civic values and commitments to non-violence. While findings are specific to these two cases, they may plausibly apply to a broader range of cities, such that commitments to improve public policy and political institutions can overcome structural risk factors that foster violence.
We examine Mexico City’s urban structure through a composite index by combining two previously existing metrics: one derived from the Urban Network Analysis tool (UNA), recently published by MIT researchers, and the other, using an Entropy Index, which in essence, represents the mixed land-use degree. The proposed composite index embodies a different approach from previous methods reported in the literature because it uses disaggregated data at the unit level, performs weighted cluster calculations through a network data set, and incorporates a mixed land-use metric. This method was developed in order to test if the urban arrangement showed signs of a polycentric condition under a particular centrality standpoint. We observed that Mexico City has a relatively weak polycentric urban condition.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, there has been remarkable enthusiasm for theorising how transitional processes have unfolded in post-socialist cities. In seeking to extend literature that uses the post-socialist condition as a tool for theory building, we draw attention to the ongoing processes of institutional change in post-socialist cities. In doing so, we reject a ‘top-down’ perspective and examine how these institutional transitions are shaped through processes of ‘domestication’, negotiation and contestation between different interest groups in the city. We develop our argument, by drawing attention to the local political debates surrounding the propiska in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The propiska developed throughout the Soviet Union to control internal migration and is still used today in a less restrictive form. By discussing our case study, we hope to foster attention towards the ongoing contested processes of institutional transition in post-socialist cities.
The development of projects for new eco-cities is rapidly becoming a global phenomenon. Alleged eco-cities are being built across a variety of spaces via processes of urbanisation triggering substantial environmental, social and economic impacts. This article investigates how new eco-city projects interpret and practice urban sustainability by focusing on the policy context that underpins their development. The article argues that projects for new eco-cities are shaped in loci by policy agendas tailored around specific economic and political targets. In these terms, the ideas and strategies of urban sustainability adopted by eco-city developers are understood as reflections of broader policy priorities. The case study employed in this article, Masdar City, reveals how the Emirati eco-city initiative is the product of local agendas seeking economic growth via urbanisation to preserve the political institutions of Abu Dhabi. Following the economic imperatives set by the ruling class, the Masdar City project interprets sustainability as ecological modernisation and practices urban environmentalism almost exclusively in economic terms. The article shows how the developers of Masdar City capitalise on sustainability by building an urban platform to develop and commercialise clean-tech products, and concludes that the Emirati alleged eco-city is an example of urban eco-modernisation: a high-tech urban development informed by market analysis rather than ecological studies.
Extending Small and McDermott’s ‘conditional perspective’, Blalock’s minority competition theory is used to explain how the relationship between African Americans and the number of supermarkets in a zip code depends on the city in which it resides. The 2010 American Community Survey and ZIP Business pattern data are examined with hierarchical general linear models to explore whether the previously observed negative relationship between the percentage of African Americans and the number of supermarkets in a zip code depends on the percentage of African Americans in the city. The results show that the relationship between the percentage of African Americans and the number of supermarkets depends on the percentage of African Americans in the city in the U-shaped pattern predicted by minority competition theory. Applications of minority competition to other theories of the unequal distribution of resources in cities are discussed.
According to the conventional theoretical framework, fiscal stress is an explanatory factor of privatisation, since the latter can provide economies of scale and cost savings, as indicated by the theory of public choice. However, urban planning theories suggest that public choice does not take into account the collective needs of those receiving public services. The present study aims to clarify two major issues. Firstly, in the presence of fiscal stress, do public managers really privatise? And secondly, does privatisation harm the public interest? To investigate these questions, we constructed and analysed a discrete-time survival model, which was applied to the period 2000–2010, to reflect the effects of the current global financial crisis on the fiscal stress–privatisation relationship with respect to urban waste collection services. The results obtained indicate that when certain aspects of financial condition worsen, the likelihood of public services being privatised increases. This was the case during the Great Recession of 2008–2010, especially when a neighbouring municipality had previously privatised its services. After privatisation, service quality did not vary significantly, and so we conclude that public choice does not prejudice the public interest.
There has been much debate about the impact of recession and austerity on the voluntary and community sector over recent years. Using secondary data from the 2008 National Survey of Third Sector Organisations, Clifford et al. (2013), writing in this journal, have argued that voluntary sector organisations located in more deprived local authorities are likely to suffer most due to the combined effect of cuts in government funding in these areas and their greater dependency on statutory funding. This paper develops this argument by exploring the sector’s changing relationship with the state through an empirical analysis of the differential impact of recession and austerity on voluntary and community organisations involved in public service delivery in the two English core cities of Bristol and Liverpool. This paper highlights how the scale and unevenness of public spending cuts, the levels of voluntary sector dependency on statutory funding and the rising demands for the sector’s services in a period of recession and austerity are being experienced locally. It portrays a sector whose resilience is being severely tested and one that is being forced rapidly to restructure and reposition itself in an increasingly challenging funding environment.
This article analyses the risk of homelessness in the Danish adult population. The study is based on individual, administrative micro-data for about 4.15 million Danes who were 18 years or older on 1 January 2002. Homelessness is measured by shelter use from 2002 to 2011. Data also cover civil status, immigration background, education, employment, income, mental illness, drug and alcohol abuse, and previous imprisonment over five years prior to the measurement period. Prevalence of shelter use shows a considerable risk of homelessness amongst individuals experiencing multidimensional social exclusion. Nonetheless, even in high-risk groups such as drug abusers and people with a dual diagnosis, the majority have not used shelters. A multivariate analysis shows significantly higher use of homeless shelters amongst immigrants and individuals with low income, unemployment, low education, mental illness, drug or alcohol abuse, or a previous imprisonment. The highest risk of shelter use is associated with drug abuse, alcohol abuse, mental illness and previous imprisonment, whereas the risk associated with low income is smaller than for the psychosocial vulnerabilities. The results show that homelessness in Denmark is widely concentrated amongst individuals with complex support needs, rather than associated with wider poverty problems.
This paper examines the domestic growth and overseas expansion of Turkish firms as part of the treadmill of production. The treadmill of production is an environmental and political-economy approach to society’s insatiable hunger for material goods. In this approach, economic growth leads to withdrawals of natural resources, and the addition of waste to the environment that stresses both nature and society. Drawing on the treadmill of production approach, I argue that logistical service providers are a coping and modernisation mechanism for accelerated urban growth and economic expansion. This process is visible in the expansion of privatised waste management, and even more so in rapidly urbanising regions where growth and modernisation are of great importance to policy-makers. Owing to the importance of growth and expansion, logistics firms in newly industrialised countries, like their counterparts in the Global North, increasingly export logistical services overseas. This, in turn, accelerates the treadmill of production internationally. As such, this paper will also look at the expansion of Turkish firms into Pakistan.
Entrepreneurial ecosystems (EE) consist of interacting components, which foster new firm formation and associated regional entrepreneurial activities. Current work on EE, however, focuses on documenting the presence of system components, which means there is little understanding of interdependencies between EE components and their evolutionary dynamics. To address these issues, the objective of the present study is to develop an evolutionary framework of EE development that integrates important components from prior work and describes how critical elements of an entrepreneurial system interact and evolve over time. The value of this framework in understanding the evolutionary dynamics of EE will be demonstrated by profiling the EE of Phoenix, Arizona. The evolutionary perspective developed is valuable because it provides a sense of how history, culture and the institutional setting impact EE. It also provides stakeholders with action points to help maintain or propel an EE to the next level. This is a distinct improvement over static approaches that provide a list of EE ingredients with no sense of their relative importance over time. The proposed framework may also be used in a comparative context to compare and contrast the evolutionary trajectory of EE to better understand why particular places remain trapped in a specific phase of growth or continue to evolve over time.
Academic and lay discourses around disadvantaged urban areas often draw on the language of ‘dumping grounds’ to encapsulate the poverty, marginalisation and social problems often found there. Yet the concept of a dumping ground remains insufficiently theorised. This paper addresses this issue by identifying five constituent features of the dumping ground: the perception of people as waste whose fate is to be discarded; the need to accommodate this human ‘waste’ and the logic by which places are selected for this purpose; the mechanisms through which this spatial sorting occurs as problem populations are moved to their ‘rightful’ place; the relations of power which enforce or encourage this mobility; and finally, the reactions of incumbent residents in neighbourhoods that are compelled to host unwanted social groups. In the second part of this paper, these themes are illustrated via a case study of the Australian city of Logan where residents complain that their city has been treated as a dumping ground in order to explain its poor reputation.
This paper examines the spatial agglomeration of the communications equipment manufacturing (CEM) industry in the US metropolitan statistical areas. We examine the influence of vertical industrial linkages, horizontal industrial linkages and corporate taxation on the locational choice of CEM establishments using discrete count data regression models. Panel data regression models are used for sensitivity tests. Our results suggest that both types of linkages have significant positive impacts on the spatial agglomeration of the CEM industry, indicating that input-output connections are geographically localised. Our findings support the hypothesis that the presence of vertical linkages suppliers and horizontal linkages in a metropolitan area could facilitate the spatial agglomeration of CEM establishments there. We also find that higher state corporate taxes can impede the choice of location of CEM establishments within a state. These findings suggest that state policymakers can improve the pro-business environment and attract CEM establishments in their state by lowering corporate taxes and by increasing potential horizontal and vertical industrial linkages.
The delivery of housing to low income citizens across South Africa reflects the state’s realisation of citizens’ social rights to housing and can help to strengthen a citizen’s sense of belonging. Additionally, through the very processes of housing delivery, such as decentralised mechanisms with strong community participation, principles of inclusive citizenship are forged and enacted. However, it is argued in this paper that because housing allocation is devolved and power granted to local elites, an important aspect of citizenship-making has also been devolved with insufficient checks and balances. The paper cautions that the decision-making of local elites who determine access to housing and thus the realisation of citizenship rights, is mitigated by their subjectivities. Based on case studies of selected settlements in eThekwini (Durban), the paper examines how residents access housing in slum upgrade programmes. It finds that, beyond national eligibility criteria additional localised criteria are evident which demand that residents use their identity and social relationships to both provide evidence of their eligibility and negotiate access. The paper further cautions that these local processes may be sowing seeds of conflict by propagating existing social tensions, particularly around ethno- and xenophobia, and party political contests. Such conflict ultimately undermines citizenship ideals.
Most scholarship on informal housing focuses on developing countries and little research investigates how low-income populations in the US participate in homeownership through self-built and self-provided housing. Meanwhile, informally developed areas are increasingly being uncovered in the US, especially in the urban periphery of growing metropolitan regions. This paper documents and analyses largely unknown housing conditions and needs for the growing number of people that live in such communities. Data for this paper were collected through a survey of 133 households in two unincorporated low-income, self-help settlements in Central Texas. In this survey we address (1) household composition, (2) specific housing conditions, and (3) reported structural and infrastructural problems. Through regression analyses we identify factors that mitigate or aggravate the severity of overall housing problems and identify the most significant concerns for residents. Our results offer future lines of action regarding property titles, financing and dwelling upgrading.
Urban local governments are important players in climate governance, and their roles are evolving. This review traces the changing nexus of Australia’s climate policy, energy policy and energy efficiency imperatives and its repositioning of urban local governments. We characterise the ways urban local governments’ capacities and capabilities are being mobilised in light of a changing multi-level political opportunity structure around energy efficiency. The shifts we observe not only extend local governments’ role in implementing climate change responses but also engage them as partners in conceiving and operationalising new measures, suggesting new ground is being opened in the urban politics of climate governance. A review of the Australian context provides important insights for the new politics of energy in the city as, internationally, energy efficiency is reframed as a climate change issue and the city is repositioned as an important strategic space in energy politics and the governance of energy systems.
This study illustrates that over the past 30 years, Americans have become less socially isolated while using public spaces. Based on content analysis of films from four public spaces over a 30-year period, the behaviour and characteristics of 143,593 people were coded. The most dramatic changes in the social life of urban public spaces have been an increase in the proportion of women and a corresponding increase in the tendency for men and women to spend time together in public. Despite the ubiquity of mobile phones, their rate of use in public is relatively small. Mobile phone users appear less often in spaces where there are more groups, and most often in spaces where people might otherwise be walking alone. This suggests that, when framed as a communication tool, mobile phone use is associated with reduced public isolation, although it is associated with an increased likelihood to linger and with time spent lingering in public. We argue that public spaces are an important component of the communication system that provides exposure to diverse messages, brings people into contact to discuss their needs and interests, and helps people recognise their commonalities and accept their differences. The increased tendency to spend time in groups while in public contrasts with evidence from other research that suggests a decline in American public life, and that mobile phones have increased social isolation in public spaces. The increase in group behaviour, women and lingering in public may have positive implications for engagement within the public sphere.
This paper examines how gendered and racialised discourses and practices intersect to shape, to an extent, the ways in which young men are affected by representations of Luton and how they experience urban space. Using Wetherell’s concept of affective intersectionality, Hage’s distinction between passive and governmental belonging and Brah’s interpretation of diasporic identities, we argue that the affective-discursive modalities through which participants make sense of belonging reflects wider political discourses positioning them as differently valued. Despite contradictions and ambivalences, racialised young men tended to express relatively more positive feelings of being ‘at home’ in their neighbourhood and in Luton than the white young men we interviewed. Yet, they were also less likely to express a sense of entitlement to the city. Furthermore, spectacular racist events reinforced more mundane experiences of everyday racism, particularly among Muslim young men.
The 1977 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) established a bold agenda requiring financial institutions in the USA to serve the credit needs of low- and moderate-income areas, including traditionally excluded minority residential areas. Initially opposed by both bankers and the federal regulatory authorities responsible for enforcement, the CRA has been contentious for decades. This study explores CRA impacts by investigating whether small businesses located in minority neighbourhoods have the same degree of bank-loan access as equally creditworthy firms located in other environs. We analysed both the unmet credit needs of small firms and the outcomes of their loan applications. We found that equality in loan access has been attained in some respects, indicating the CRA has had positive effects on loan availability. Inequality nonetheless persists. Regarding unmet credit needs, firms are penalised if their owners are African American, Latino or Asian American. Since roughly half of owners in minority communities are minorities, our challenge was to disentangle the effects on loan access of small-business geographic location versus owner race. Causal factors underlying our findings were investigated. Did bank regulators take the initiative in lessening traditional discriminatory lending practices? Alternatively, were activist community groups responsible? While the agenda advocated by activist groups coincides closely with actual gains, the overlapping but differing stated objectives of regulators did not.
Revealing the parties, the processes and the institutions and, consequently, both the diversity and contingency of the real estate markets, the existing increasing literature emphasises the contemporary numerous links and interdependencies between real estate, land value, planning and town planning policy and even the financial system. This paper is an attempt to understand all the real estate markets, from the most peripheral ones, where the urban rent is the lowest, to the most dense city centres. To gain a better understanding of the real estate market, a process of firstly deconstruction and then reconstruction is used. The process of deconstruction involves identifying various market trends according to property type (principally residential buildings), players and institutions, territorial situations and temporalities based on research conducted in Switzerland. We then developed a meta-synthesis inspired by Fernand Braudel whose works put as much emphasis on day-to-day economic activity as on long-term activity, and on local as well as global issues.
We study the global system of information and communication technology (ICT) research and development (R&D) locations at city level by applying network analysis and profiling R&D locations with respect to technological complexity. We analyse how the position of a city in the network interacts with the level of its technological complexity. The results show that the ownership and location of R&D activities are concentrated. However, cities with high levels of R&D-centre ownership are not necessarily the most important locations of R&D activity. Instead, cities where the corporate control of R&D activities is concentrated play the role of the network hubs. We find that there is a clear relationship between the level of technological complexity and the choice of a city as a location for R&D activity and its role as a network hub. Along with the already established global cities, Chinese cities now occupy key positions in the ICT R&D network.
Drawing on a survey of migrants in 12 cities across four major urbanising areas in China, this paper analyses rural migrants’ intention for permanent urban settlement. We focus on one sizeable but often overlooked group of rural migrants, that is, the self-employed. Our hypothesis is that the self-employed migrants tend to have stronger intention for permanent urban settlement since they are usually more ingrained in urban economy and society. The empirical evidence supports our hypothesis. Moreover, the social and economic choices made by the self-employed migrants are consistent with their expressed intentions: they are more likely to migrate with spouses and to live with their family members, more likely to have a plan for house purchase in cities; they are also more integrated into urban society in terms of learning local dialects and making friends with local permanent residents.
The urban food question is forcing itself up the political agenda in the Global North because of a new food equation that spells the end of the ‘cheap food’ era, fuelling nutritional poverty in the cities of Europe and North America. This article explores the rise of the urban food question in the Global North through the multiple prisms of theory, policy and political practice. First, it explores the theoretical ways in which the food system is being framed in urban planning, urban political ecology and community food security. Second, it charts the rise of new urban foodscapes associated with urban agriculture and public health. Finally, it identifies a new urban food politics and asks if this constitutes a new social movement.
Neoliberal urban governances are now widely recognised as contingently manifest and constantly evolving social and institutional formations. Yet, there remains comparatively little empirical work on the place-specific complexities of urban neoliberalisation, and as variegated formations within the same city. Drawing on Chicago’s Bronzeville and Pilsen neighbourhoods, we reveal the intra-urban contingency character of neoliberal urban governance. Both ‘neighbourhood governances’ in Bronzeville and Pilsen, we suggest, are constituted by similar yet different ensembles of developers, local officials and politically oriented community organisations, and redevelopment strategies. Second, we illuminate one dimension of this intra-urban contingency: the mutually constitutive and differentially unfolding relation between contestation and neoliberal governance. Finally, four inter-related variables are revealed as mediating factors within this relationship that account for why Bronzeville and Pilsen’s governances have evolved in different ways: historical legacy, the dynamics between activist groups and pro-growth agents, economic circumstances and political orientation of contestation.
This paper investigates the social dimensions of gated communities (GCs) in US western metropolitan areas and how they contribute to segregation. We use geographically referenced data of GCs, and introduce a local metric based on social distance indices (SDI). This multivariate spatial analysis investigates homogeneity in three aspects: race and ethnicity, economic class and age between 2000 and 2010 census. The results indicate contrasting effects given different levels of geography. GCs significantly contribute to segregation patterns at a local level, and this has been locally reinforcing. Although socioeconomic segregation and ethnic status yield the most prevalent structure of local distance, gated enclaves are also significantly structured by age. The findings are considered in the context of a metropolitan decline in levels of segregation. Data also show that GCs are likely to be located within large racially homogeneous areas, and do not significantly contribute to racial segregation.
Christiania is an autonomous Free Town, born as a squat in 1971, located in the centre of Copenhagen. After 40 years of struggles and negotiations with the Danish institutions in order to survive and to maintain its autonomy, Christiania reached an agreement with the state in 2011. If on the one hand the agreement apparently guarantees the survival of Christiania, on the other hand it regulates various domains that used to be self-regulated by the community, and therefore limits Christiania’s autonomy. The aim of the article is to discuss the potential effects of the agreement – and more specifically of the new government technology placed in operation through the agreement – on some of these domains. Assuming that autonomy is always fractured, partial and ongoing, the thesis proposed in the article is that, in this new context, Christiania has come to represent a peculiar case of hybridisation of forces of autonomy and of forces of neoliberalisation, and that the tensions between these two forces could potentially lead to different outcomes that challenge traditional understanding of both autonomy and neoliberalism in urban contexts.
It is widely believed that unaffordable housing could drive businesses away and thus impede job growth. However, there is little evidence to support this view. This paper presents a simple model to clarify how housing affordability is linked to employment growth and why unaffordable housing could negatively affect employment growth. The paper then investigates this effect empirically using data on California municipalities. For various reasons, a simple correlation between unaffordable housing and employment growth cannot be interpreted as causal. Several empirical strategies are employed to identify the causal effect of unaffordable housing on employment growth. The estimation results provide consistent evidence that unaffordable housing indeed slows local employment growth.
In the 2000s, cities across North America began leasing existing infrastructure to global investment consortia. Previous evaluations of infrastructure leases focus on the lack of transparency of the privatisation process and the terms of the arrangements negotiated by the public sector and the private concessionaires. In this research, we argue that such approaches fall short by failing to investigate the significant repositioning of the local state relative to financial markets produced by their involvement in major asset lease deals. We develop this argument through a case study of the institutional transformation of the City of Chicago, the US’s most aggressive instigator of infrastructure asset leases. Even as the concession agreements seemingly protect the City from the claims of investors, creditors and counterparties and provide it with new powers, they enmesh the City in a set of financial relationships that expose it to liabilities not accounted for in lease agreements and create an institutional bias towards managing the collateral effects of financialisation.
As a main rural initiative, village land shareholding cooperatives spearhead non-agricultural development in the interest of rural communities, and thus participate in urbanisation. Nanhai, Guangdong, is a case in illustration. The institution of land shareholding cooperatives gives rise to unique compartmentalised industrialisation and fragmented urbanisation in the context of high population density and small-area autonomous villages. Village cooperatives are mutated from economic corporations to welfare organisations, prompted by the collapse of village enterprises. Being averse to investment for long-term productivity, village cooperatives indulge in extracting short-term land rents solely. Extracting land economic rents created by urbanisation, village cooperatives generate environmental and social equality problems. High-density low-income countries, especially in Asia, are facing a great challenge as fierce competition for limited urban land resources without effective governance often results in an unfavourable form of urbanisation. Sustainable compact urbanisation needs to strike a balance between local autonomy and urban integrity.
The paper considers how shifting laundry practices and technologies associated with dirty washing have over time summoned different spaces, socialities and socio-spatial assemblages in the city, enrolling different actors and multiple publics and constituting different associations, networks and relations in its wake as it travels from the home and back again. It argues that rather than being an inert object of unpleasant matter, whose encounter with humans has been largely restricted to certain categories of person for its transformation to re-use, and thus passed unnoticed, the paper explores how laundry practices have figured in producing and reproducing gendered (and classed) relations of labour, and enacting multiple socio-spatial, and gendered, relations and assemblages in the city, which have largely gone unnoticed in accounts of everyday urban life.
Despite a select group of urban centres generating a disproportionate amount of global economic output, significant attention is being devoted to the impact of urban-economic processes on interstitial spaces lying between metropolitan areas. Nevertheless, there remains a noticeable silence in city-region debate concerning how rural spaces are conceptualised, governed and represented. In this paper we draw on recent city-region developments in England and Wales to suggest a paralysis of city-region policymaking has ensued from policy elites constantly swaying between a spatially-selective, city-first, agglomeration perspective on city-regionalism and a spatially-inclusive, region-first, scalar approach which fragments and divides territorial space along historical lines. In the final part we provide a typology of functionally dominant city-region constructs which we suggest offers a way out from the paralysis that currently grips city-region policymaking.
The recent financial crisis has revealed the financial vulnerability faced by a significant number of households in the UK. Households experiencing financial problems may potentially fall into arrears in meeting financial obligations such as rent, mortgage payments or household bills. Indeed, such arrears have been regarded as one of the most direct measures of financial stress at the household level. In this paper, we explore the relationship between household repayment behaviour and neighbourhood ties in order to identify possible channels of support for households experiencing financial stress. We analyse data on 17,723 households drawn from wave 1 of the UK longitudinal study, Understanding Society, merged with information on neighbourhood ties defined at the postcode area level elicited from a sample of 48,906 individuals. Our findings, which relate to the post financial crisis era, suggest that households in regions characterised by strong neighbourhood ties are less likely to report being in arrears and that this relationship is particularly apparent in the case of housing costs. This inverse relationship is strongest in regions characterised by a high density of individuals who feel able to turn to someone in the neighbourhood for support or advice. Thus, neighbourhood and community groups, which enhance social interaction and neighbourhood ties, may be effective channels of support for financially vulnerable households.
This paper examines tensions and frictions in urban planning and spatial practices of town inhabitants since the beginning of the 20th century in the town of Kasba Tadla, an ordinary town in the Middle Atlas Region. It shows how Moroccan towns and cities have been divided into quarters; while some offer all amenities of modern urban life, others, built by the residents themselves, were officially disregarded. From the end of the 20th century onwards, this distinction has been changing towards a more equal distribution of resources. The author suggests a thorough reflection of professional action and proposes that urban planning be rooted in the local context in connection with colonial, national and global influences. Urban development that recognises town people as active partners in the production of urban space is encouraged.
Food deserts are associated with lower quality diets and higher obesity rates. One hypothesis for their emergence is that retailers avoid food deserts because demand side factors such as low income limit demand for healthy foods. A competing hypothesis is that supply side factors cause prohibitively high costs of operation for grocers – leading to limited access to healthy foods and thus low expressed demand. The direction of causality has important implications for improving diets and health of food desert residents. This paper analyses Detroit food desert residents’ fresh vegetable purchasing behaviour using data from a non-profit grocer. The evidence confirms that these consumers respond to prices and income similarly to the average American, however, they face a different set of constraints. Both supply and demand side factors are at work – access problems are critical, but even with better access low incomes and other demand side issues limit vegetable consumption.
Directing growth towards compact rail corridors has become a key strategy for redirecting auto-oriented regions towards denser, mixed-use communities that support sustainable travel. Few have examined how travel of near-rail residents varies within corridors or whether corridor land use–travel interactions diverge from regional averages. The Los Angeles region has made substantial investments in transit-oriented development, and our survey analysis indicates that although rail corridor residents drove less and rode public transit more than the county average, households in an older subway corridor with more near-transit development had about 11 fewer daily miles driven and higher transit ridership than households along a newer light rail line, a difference likely associated with development patterns and the composition and preferences of residents. Rail transit corridors are not created equally, and transit providers and community planners should consider the social and development context of corridors in efforts to improve transit access and maximise development.
This paper seeks to intersect two recent trends in urban research. First, it takes seriously the recognition that established traditions of research concerned with urban space have tended to privilege the horizontal extension of cities to the neglect of their vertical or volumetric extension. Second, the paper contributes to the resurgence of interest among social scientists in the validity of fiction – and especially speculative or science fiction – as a source of critical commentary and as a mode of knowledge that can exist in close reciprocity with non-fictional work. From these two starting points the paper develops a reading of the dialogue between the representations of vertical urban life that have featured in landmark works of 20th-century science fiction literature and key themes in contemporary urban analysis.
Analysing restricted access census data, this paper examines the long-term trends of immigrant segregation in France from 1968 to 2007. Similarly to other European countries, France experienced a rise in the proportion of immigrants in its population that was characterised by a new predominance of non-European immigration. Despite this, average segregation levels remained moderate. While the number of immigrant enclaves increased, particularly during the 2000s, the average concentration for most groups decreased because of a reduction of heavily concentrated census tracts, and census tracts with few immigrants. Contradicting frequent assertions, neither mono-ethnic census tracts nor ghettos exist in France. By contrast, many immigrants live in census tracts characterised by a low proportion of immigrants from their own group and from all origins. A long residential period in France is correlated with lower concentrations and proportion of immigrants in the census tract for most groups, though these effects are sometimes modest.
Buyers often pay different prices for almost identical houses. One possible explanation is that there are information asymmetries in housing markets. Perhaps, buyers from outside the area have higher search costs and know less about the local market relative to that of current residents. In addition, an out-of-town buyer’s price expectations could be anchored to market prices in their town of origin. This study examines the effect of buyer heterogeneity in the form of geographic location on house prices. We use a new data set to examine the non-local buyer information asymmetry and anchoring hypothesis. Using transaction data from a large development in Chengdu, China, our empirical models are estimated with relatively homogeneous units sold over a short period of time by one seller to minimise possible bias resulting from omitted variables. Our results support the hypotheses that non-local buyers pay higher prices and that high price anchoring occurs.
This paper examines the impact of the auction process of residential properties that whilst unsuccessful at auction sold subsequently. The empirical analysis considers both the probability of sale and the premium of the subsequent sale price over the guide price, reserve and opening bid. The findings highlight that the final achieved sale price is influenced by key price variables revealed both prior to and during the auction itself. Factors such as auction participation, the number of individual bidders and the number of bids are significant in a number of the alternative specifications.
Recently the political philosophy of agonism has been applied by urban theorists to model intercultural urban encounters in so-called ‘micro-publics’, such as the workplace or the classroom. The paper examines to what extent agonism offers a viable model for dealing with urban diversity in these mundane, social encounters. I will argue that, applied to these lower-level social contexts, agonism takes the vulnerability of citizens with regard to their ethnic, cultural or religious attachments insufficiently into account. The resulting injuries will most likely be counter-productive to the goal of living with diversity. By way of a contrast, I will offer two less demanding, more practicable types of intercultural civility.
Since 2004, two auction mechanisms – listing auctions and tender auctions – have played a dominant role in land lease arrangements for real estate development in Beijing. Listing auctions in land markets are similar to general English auctions, where bidders offer the highest price to win. However, in tender auctions, winners are determined by the bidding price and the bidder’s financial capability and reputation. Based on granted land parcels from 2006 to 2012 in Beijing, this paper attempts to examine the price differences between the two auctions and the role of land auction in urban development and price stabilisation. We find that land policy in Beijing, which aims to stabilise land prices and to provide low-price residences, has been integrated with urban development planning in terms of spatial and density pattern. Land leasing in Beijing is not only a land policy but also a part of the strategy framework of local development.
This paper estimates demand for housing and its attributes in urban Bangladesh using a survey of 4400 owner, renter and squatter households. The results revealed that housing demand is inelastic with respect to income and price; and price elasticity is less than income elasticity in absolute terms. Estimates of demand for housing attributes showed that owner and renter households value structural quality, sanitation and electricity, as well as a living room and dining room/kitchen. Squatter households value living space, pit latrine, water supply and electricity, but place less emphasis on structural quality. Irrespective of these submarkets, income improvement strategies are likely to be the most effective means of enhancing housing consumption. The rental submarket might be improved by rent liberalisation, while slum improvement strategies should focus on tenure security and incremental improvement. However, contrary to current practice, the emphasis should be on the size of squatter dwellings rather than on their structural quality.
Gender differentials in commuting have been reported in the literature, often couched within the household responsibility hypothesis. This hypothesis attributes shorter commutes to females due to a disproportionate load of household responsibilities. The objective of the present study is to report research regarding commuting time in São Paulo Metropolitan Region, in Brazil. Based on microdata from the Demographic Census of 2010 the focus of the present study is on the role of marital status and presence of dependents on gender differentials in commuting time. Specifically, the research seeks to determine whether there is empirical support in this region for the household responsibility hypothesis. The results suggest that marital status exerts a stronger influence on the commuting time of working women, with the number of dependents (children and elderly) exerting a smaller influence on commuting time. Gender differentials are observed also for single and formerly married working females, which suggests other cultural or environmental factors not fully captured by the household responsibility hypothesis. Most studies, however, are set in North America. This research contributes towards the development of a broader, international knowledge foundation regarding gender and commuting patterns.
This paper analyses urban entrepreneurialism in relation to the commodification of urban heritage in the context of China. The case study is Lijiang Old Town in Yunnan province. It is found that there are three markets through which profit is extracted from urban heritage: the tourist market, the real estate market and the capital market. These markets, ranging from simple to complex, reflect the Lijiang local government’s innovative efforts to deepen the commodification of urban heritage and enhance local competitiveness. By discussing how profit is distributed, I argue that Lijiang’s local government and its ruling elites have benefited more from tourist revenues than any other groups. An analysis of Lijiang’s demographical displacement demonstrates that urban heritage is implicated in the complicated choices made by ordinary individuals in the face of political control and capital accumulation.
The Tea Party exploded on the US political scene with President Barack Obama’s election and scholarly research focuses on its role in national issues. However, Tea Party and property rights advocates, among others, also fiercely oppose sustainability city planning issues, recently having legislation introduced in 26 US states to stop such practices. They perceive planning as directly connected to the United Nation’s 1992 document, Agenda 21: the Rio Declaration on Development and Environment. The counter-narrative suggests the UN seeks to restrict individual property rights and American sovereignty. Meanwhile, Agenda 21-related planning is favourably considered and practiced worldwide. Through a mixed-methods approach using quantitative and case-based research, we track the opposition’s emergence through the introduction and sometimes adoption of state legislation. We draw conclusions and implications for research and practice using a theoretical framework routed in scholarship from planning, geography, political science, and communications/new media.
As in other Western countries, in Sweden there is a widespread conviction that residential segregation influences the opportunities for residents’ social mobility and therefore is a cause of income inequality. But the opposite direction of causality, from income inequality to residential segregation, is often ignored. The paper fills this gap and analyses income inequality and economic residential segregation developments in Malmö in the years 1991–2010. During this period, changes in population composition owing to increased immigration had a negligible impact on income inequality, while the latter was primarily influenced by changes in the distribution of labour market earnings and capital incomes. At the same time, neighbourhood income inequality was predominantly driven by overall household income inequality and only to a much lower extent by the increase in residential sorting by income. Policy influencing income distribution rather than area-based strategies should thus be at the centre of current debates on residential segregation in Sweden.
Neoliberal accounts of local governance have paid insufficient attention to variation in the forms of urban governance and urban policies across local regimes. On the basis of a comparison of eight deprived neighbourhoods in Catalonia (Spain) where the same regional programme of urban regeneration has been carried out, this paper explores the significance of place when it comes to understanding the adoption of different models of urban governance. In Spain, the combination of a high autonomy of local government and a very strong tradition of neighbourhood associations has resulted in both local authorities and community organisations playing a very important role in local policy-making. Local structural and agency factors are both essential to understanding why models of urban governance and regeneration change from place to place. The paper concludes that neighbourhood type, size of municipality, social capital and previous conflicts are crucial for the understanding of urban governance geographies.
This paper argues that the relentless logic of commodification has served to undermine a key element of the social cement of contemporary capitalism: home ownership. In addressing this issue, the paper explores the development of the post war ‘social project’ of home ownership with particular reference to mature home ownership societies such as the USA, Japan, Britain and Australia. The paper then outlines the new fault lines and fractures which have emerged in post-crisis home ownership systems and the way in which a more vigorous, financialised private landlordism has emerged from the debris of the subprime meltdown. A key argument is that in a new and more intensified process of housing commodification, the social project promise of home ownership for a previous generation has shifted to a promise of private landlordism for current generations. In summary, the social project of Keynesian-embedded liberalism has been undermined by the economic project of neoliberalism.
Some postulate that spatially targeted grants and tax cuts stimulate jobs and establishment openings, and reduce closures in distressed urban neighbourhoods. The scholarly literature is mixed and mostly argues that at best these programmes have no impact and at worst raise land rents, spurring gentrification. The USA designated three rounds of Renewal Communities, Empowerment Zones or Enterprise Communities (RC/EZ/EC) to receive wage credits or grants. While others have estimated the impact of Round I EZ/ECs, this article estimates the impact of more recent rounds in Tennessee and California on job and businesses using propensity score matching. Data are presented by RC/EZ for retail, very small and minority establishments. Jobs increased in RC/EZs compared with control areas during the wage credit period. In general, establishment openings rose for small establishments but fell for retail. Closures overall fell. Future place-based initiatives should be strategic about industry mix and minority establishments.
This study examines the popular practices of Chinese urbanism in which commodification of urban land has been actively pursued by municipal governments as a means of revenue generation in the era of neoliberalisation. The research identifies a complex, diverse and self-conflicting internal dynamics that characterised the Chinese state, reveals the political and financial motives of local governments to engage in urbanism and maps out the emerging geography of neoliberal urbanism. Land commodification has become a main source of municipal finance accounting for over 30% of total municipal budgetary revenue and nearly 40% of the fund for urban maintenance and construction. An inverse U-shaped relationship is found between the importance of land commodification to municipal finance and the level of urban economic growth. A similar relationship is identified for land-based municipal finance and degree of openness.
The success of compact development depends in part on accurately gauging its public demand and understanding residents’ preferences towards it. Drawing upon a stated-preference survey in the Wasatch Front region in Utah, this paper estimates preferences for compact, walkable and transit-friendly neighbourhoods through the application of a discrete choice experiment. Results derived from a latent class analysis reveal significant heterogeneity in residential location preferences. Overall, strong preferences for compact development are more likely to occur among families with fewer school-age children, low-income and renter-occupied households, and those who appreciate social heterogeneity and have less desire for privacy. These tastes are also associated with personal preferences for walking and biking and supportive opinions toward environmental protection and urban growth boundary policies. By comparing respondents’ preferences to their actual residential and travel choices in two contrasting subregions, we further address the complex relationships between environment, preferences, residential locations and travel.
There are all too few examples of good urban governance in the ‘South’. One city which improved its performance dramatically after 1992 was Bogotá, the capital of Colombia. It joined the ranks of exemplar cities and its former mayors toured the world advertising this ‘miracle’. Unfortunately, after 2008, the city’s administration became mired in corruption and its image ratings have dived. The current administration has so far failed to revive trust in the city’s governance. Based on interviews with key personalities in the city, this paper examines the causes of Bogotá’s recovery and its recent relapse. Bogotá’s experience is useful to students of urban governance in showing not only how a city in the ‘South’ can improve its performance but also that any improvement is fragile. A decent working relationship between technocrats and politicians is critical in guaranteeing both public support and progress in implementing major public works.
The importance of strengthening local governments is widely recognised as local governments face new challenges against the backdrop of global decentralisation processes. Municipal International Cooperation (MIC) contributes strategically to such processes by peer-to-peer learning within existing local institutions, a development process that is both efficient and provides continuity. Empirically, the paper draws upon the findings of an evaluation of the Dutch support programme for MIC called LOGO South. The main conclusion is that partnerships between local authorities do strengthen local governments in the South; the unique approach of the LOGO South programme adds important spillover effects in mutual learning, resulting in both policy transfer and mobility. By creating multilevel governance networks, knowledge circulation was also strengthened. This paper contributes to the debate by showing that locally based, multilevel hybrid networks are strategic for governance processes.
In literature on neighbourhood effects and resources accessibility, the number of neighbourhood resources to which residents may have access are often estimated from spatial units whose constant size fails to account for unique ways residents experience their neighbourhoods. To investigate this ‘constant size neighbourhood trap’, we compared numbers of healthcare resources included in Constant Size Buffers (CSBs) and in Perceived Neighbourhood Polygons (PNPs) from cognitive neighbourhood data collected among 653 residents of the Paris metropolitan area. We observed that residents of deprived and peripheral areas had smaller PNPs than their counterparts. Studying residents assessments of the quantity of neighbourhood practitioners, we then assessed the validity of using PNPs rather than CSBs to estimate number of neighbourhood resources. Lastly, resource inequalities across the Paris metropolitan area were found to be far wider when considering PNPs rather than CSBs.
Using constant neighbourhood delineation can lead to inaccurately measured individual accessibility to neighbourhood resources and to downplay the extent of inequalities in urban resources.
This study compares urban landscapes in the Portland and Los Angeles metropolitan areas at the neighbourhood level by operationalising six smart growth indices and mapping their spatial distribution patterns and time trends. Analysis results show that the two metropolitan areas have both strengths and weaknesses in different aspects of smart growth. Most neighbourhoods in both regions do not excel in all six smart growth measures: they are at the high ends of some smart growth indices but at the low ends of others. Some smart growth features such as mixed land use and mixed housing are already pervasive in suburban areas. Density in some mature suburban neighbourhoods is also relatively high. A large number of neighbourhoods in suburban and exurban areas exhibit high levels of socioeconomic diversity. Time trend analyses suggest that in both regions, older neighbourhoods tend to be ‘smarter’ than newer ones, except for racial/ethnic diversity.
In this paper, we examine the link between regional financial development and foreign direct investment using a large micro-level dataset of Chinese manufacturing enterprises. We first investigate the effect of regional financial development on foreign direct investment location choices, and find such development to significantly promote foreign direct investment. We then show that regional financial development also plays an important role in foreign direct investment productivity spillovers. Domestic firms located in financially developed regions gain positive knowledge spillovers from foreign direct investment, but the competitive pressure from multinationals exerts a negative influence on the productivity of domestic firms.
Climate change poses new challenges to cities and new flexible forms of governance are required that are able to take into account the uncertainty and abruptness of changes. The purpose of this paper is to discuss adaptive climate change governance for urban resilience. This paper identifies and reviews three traditions of literature on the idea of transitions and transformations, and assesses to what extent the transitions encompass elements of adaptive governance. This paper uses the open source Urban Transitions Project database to assess how urban experiments take into account principles of adaptive governance. The results show that: the experiments give no explicit information of ecological knowledge; the leadership of cities is primarily from local authorities; and evidence of partnerships and anticipatory or planned adaptation is limited or absent. The analysis shows that neither technological, political nor ecological solutions alone are sufficient to further our understanding of the analytical aspects of transition thinking in urban climate governance. In conclusion, the paper argues that the future research agenda for urban climate governance needs to explore further the links between the three traditions in order to better identify contradictions, complementarities or compatibilities, and what this means in practice for creating and assessing urban experiments.
Critics of many popular urban school reforms in the United States allege that these reform efforts unfairly insert market forces into the public domain, resulting in widening inequalities. In this paper, I challenge the notion that market forces per se are responsible for the gentrification that school reform often facilitates. Drawing on in-depth interviews, government documents, and media accounts, I analyse one component of school reform in Boston, the overhaul of the city’s public school student assignment policy, which curtailed parental choice (and, therefore, market pressure) within the city’s school system, while still potentially perpetuating inequalities. I discuss the implications of these findings for urban social theory related to education reform.
A growing consensus suggests that urban scholarship can benefit from engaging with knowledge in multiple sites in and beyond the academy, for instance with activism central to politics in cities worldwide. This paper explores narratives of urban politics produced with activists to reflect on how we account for knowledge and practice in theorising the urban as political terrain. Research conducted with activists in a community-based ‘Civic’ organisation in Cape Town, South Africa highlights the everyday toil that shapes resistance and its politics, the frictions and engagements behind protest headlines. In opening up theorisations of activism and revolution to the knowledge practices of movements, the paper argues we may more cogently take account of the strategic and intimate politics that characterise contemporary activism, and reshape notions of ‘revolution’, urban politics and research practice in contemporary cities, a project broadly relevant in the Global South and North.
Despite the existing knowledge that urban rapid rail transit has many effects on surrounding areas, and despite some attempts to understand the links between transit and gentrification, there remain methodological gaps in the research. This study addresses the relationship between the implementation of urban rapid rail transit and gentrification, which is conceived of as an event. As such, an event analysis approach using ‘survival analysis’ is adopted as the statistical analytical tool. It tests whether proximity to rail transit is related to the onset of gentrification in census tracts in Canada’s largest cities. It is found that proximity to rail transit, and to other gentrifying census tracts, have a statistically significant effect on gentrification in two of the three cities analysed. By providing a methodological framework for the empirical analysis of the impact of urban rail transit on gentrification, this paper is a reference for both researchers and transportation planners.
This study expands on the literature of residential abandonment by considering five types of industrial and commercial properties and three levels of explanatory variables – parcel, neighbourhood, and city. Using data for Cleveland, Ohio, it shows that tax policies have a limited impact on abandonment. Instead, two categories of variables not previously modelled are significant and policy relevant. First, the more specialised a property and the greater the cost of conversion to alternative uses, the greater the likelihood of tax delinquency and abandonment, suggesting policies to ease transition to new uses. Second, abandonment spillovers are highly significant even after accounting for neighbourhood common factors. This suggests that spatial solutions such as land use planning may be more effective than tax abatement policies in dealing with abandonment, and approaches to abandonment must be differentiated by type of property. Residential abandonment should be re-examined in light of these findings.
This study contributes to the growing body of literature on the multifaceted consequences of homeownership for households and their communities, which has seldom focused on neighbourhood satisfaction, an important predictor of neighbourhood quality. Existing studies on the relationship between homeownership and neighbourhood satisfaction have not considered whether homeownership varies in its consequences depending on local context or racial background. Homeownership may render residents more responsive to neighbourhood conditions, to their benefit and to their detriment, depending on local context. Patterns may further vary across racial groups, given vast interracial inequalities in the attainment of desirable neighbourhood outcomes and homeownership. Employing a sample of 1897 respondents from the 2001 Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (LAFANS), as well as data from the 2000 Census, this study uncovers a complex set of interrelationships among homeownership, neighbourhood characteristics and race. Homeownership makes residents more sensitive to the desirability of local characteristics, proving beneficial in advantaged communities and disadvantageous in distressed communities. These conclusions are broadly applicable to blacks, Latinos and whites, though homeownership is more salient among blacks and Latinos in determining their response to neighbourhood conditions. Given differential access to desirable neighbourhoods and asset accumulation across racial groups, findings raise new and important questions regarding the meaning of homeownership for minority households and their communities.
In self-governing residential communities processes of governance through community appear to be triggering a contractualisation of neighbouring and demise in socially inflected relations. Research to date has examined the socio-political dimensions of neighbouring, highlighting governance frameworks and the social context as key forces shaping transformations in community practice. Meanwhile, the material space of residential estates has largely disappeared from view, assuming a static role as either a container for social relations or a symbol informing estate standards. This paper advances a different perspective, arguing that residential materialities must be taken seriously as agents within community governance and neighbouring. Through a case study examining the management of pets and nuisance noise in strata-titled apartments in Sydney, Australia, the paper shows that community governance takes place through the material environment. Understandings of community self-governance and the ‘building event’ are productively combined to re-place understandings of community self-governance processes.
The phrases ‘new uses need old buildings’ and ‘old buildings require new uses’ emphasise the mutually reinforcing relationships between historic buildings and new activities in cities. What the phrases do not say are the challenges and incompatibilities that are part of the urban redevelopment process. Singapore’s inner city has been transformed since the 1990s with the introduction of new economies. This paper focuses on one precinct that has undergone land use change – Little India. The concept of ‘gentrification aesthetics’ provides a suggestive frame to explore the form and outcome of urban change, as well as its contestations when new arts and cultural activities occupy historic buildings. Gentrification aesthetics as conceptualised in the West takes on different perspectives in Singapore, prompting questions on whether a ‘Singapore style gentrification’ is evolving – one that melds urban redevelopment with state ideology in arts enhancement and aesthetic regulation.
This paper underscores the centrality of individual technological devices, particularly mobile phones, in structuring contemporary social interaction in public spaces. It illustrates the need to re-think the relationship between information and communications technologies and practices of sociability in public spaces. Based on surveys of users of mobile phones (basic mobile phones and smartphones), we explore the practices and actions of subjects in public spaces. Empirical analysis shows that the use of mobile phones and, particularly, smartphones, is gradually modifying the normative constraints associated with place and social codes, simultaneously enhancing both a sense of freedom and estrangement. Based on our findings, the paper suggests the concept of portable private-personal territory to better understand the personal space individuals develop with the support of technology. Finally, the paper concludes with a reflection on the future implications of portable private-personal territories for public spaces and cities.
Recent case studies of receiving communities have established that translocal immigrants are transforming their neighbourhoods, producing spaces of identity. While these studies have focused on the reshaping of local power dynamics, less attention has been given to the spaces, themselves, and the qualities that influence identity. This study utilises place identity literature, from environmental psychology, to explore the remaking of MacArthur Park, a public space at the centre of a Mexican and Central American immigrant community in Los Angeles, California. We find that new ‘place identities’ are influenced by the specific physical, social, and cultural elements of the park, as study participants attempt to maintain identities influenced by important places in their sending communities. The result is a park that has emotional significance for participants, significance that leads to agency – everyday and political practices – to protect the park, sometimes in the face of immense challenges.
Research has shown that there is a strong negative relationship between social spending and poverty levels. Among urban inequality researchers it is often assumed that, compared with the USA, the welfare state has mitigated social differences explaining lower levels of urban inequality in most European countries. However, research on the role of the welfare state is often conducted on the national level, and is thus unable to draw conclusions on the effects of social spending and redistribution on a lower level, failing to take the within-country variation into account. This study connects welfare state research to urban inequality research by investigating the effects of social spending on poverty in urban and non-urban areas. We have conducted a cross-national multilevel logistic regression analysis using Eurostat and European Social Survey data of 2008. Our findings suggest that the effects of social spending are unequally distributed within countries.
Globalisation enables foreign liquidity to access local property markets. This paper depicts a strong connection between foreigners’ property acquisitions and regional housing price movements in Singapore. Testing structure breaks also illustrates a ripple effect of prices from the central city to suburbs. A structural vector autoregression incorporates these two observations. Impulse-response function and forecast-error variance decomposition show that central region’s foreign-liquidity shocks can greatly impact housing price growth in not only the central region but also the non-central region where foreign buyers are inactive. The ripple effect of prices plays an important role. Non-central region’s foreign-liquidity shocks, in contrast, have small effects on both regions. Impacts of foreign-liquidity shocks can reach the public-housing market, where foreigners’ participation is prohibited. The findings are useful to policy makers who consider regulations of foreign home buyers as an instrument to stabilise housing markets.
This paper focuses on participatory urban planning as a model of urban reform and democratic invention in Brazil. Its case material regards the formulation and implementation of two sets of urban laws of very broad consequence. First, we discuss briefly the chapter on urban policy in the 1988 Citizen Constitution and the federal law that it mandates. The latter is the Estatuto da Cidade, the City Statute, from 2001, which required that 1600 cities (approximately 30%) of Brazilian municipalities either create Master Plans or reformulate existing ones according to its principles and on the basis of popular participation. Second, we focus on São Paulo’s Master Plan (2002) and Zoning Law (2004) that fulfill this requirement and on the Plan’s required revision in 2007. By examining this massive constitutionally mandated formulation of urban policy, our aim is to analyse the development of a new paradigm of urban policy that reinvents master planning.
This paper analyses whether hosting the most prestigious European cultural event, the European Capital of Culture, has an impact on regional economic development and the life satisfaction of the local population. We show that European Capitals are hosted in regions with above-average GDP per capita, but do not causally affect the economic development in a significant way. Surprisingly, using difference-in-difference estimations, a negative effect on the wellbeing of the regional population is found during the event. Since no effect is found before the event, reverse causality and positive anticipation can be ruled out. The negative effect during the event might result from dissatisfaction with the high levels of public expenditure, transport disruptions, general overcrowding or an increase in housing prices.
Louis H-G Lyautey’s legacy as colonial regent of Morocco and as an innovator in French urban planning resonates through his transformation of Rabat according to entirely new spatial logics of modernity. While his plans produced conditions for structural difficulty in indigenous housing, they also enabled the preservation of historic monuments as spaces for tourist consumption – that are now, post-Independence, considered part of Moroccan national history. The grand colonial vision of Lyautey is in many ways perpetuated in contemporary developments of the region, in particular through the current Bouregreg Valley project that will dramatically redesign the landscape of the capital in the next few years. While the project involves massive neoliberal flows of global capital, its goals reflect much of Lyautey’s lasting influence on mapping heritage and Moroccan modernity, and the path of the European tourist through the Moroccan landscape.
The renewed popularity of urban markets has generated substantial attention among policymakers, planners and urban scholars. In addition to their potential local economic impact, markets provide spaces for a variety of social exchanges and interactions that may strengthen communal ties, reproduce existing social tensions or simply reflect everyday diversity; consequently, the social functions of urban markets differ depending on the specific social, political and economic context in which individual markets operate. Based on data from interviews, questionnaires and participant observation, this article examines social exchanges and interactions within wet markets (meat, fish, fruits and vegetable markets) in Singapore. The types of social interactions found in wet markets are wide-ranging and informal, and occur across different ethnicities, generations, social statuses and classes; they can range from casual exchanges to planned gatherings to sustained relations based on mutual reciprocity and trust. Wet markets are significant to Singaporeans because they are spaces of unmediated social interactions and, within the context of state governance and ongoing modernisation, increasingly exceptional. The attachment to wet markets is a collective, social response to an ongoing process in which existing and meaningful social spaces (e.g. neighbourhoods and markets) are being erased by a redeveloped urban landscape, a concomitant disappearance of unregulated community space, and the pervasiveness of normative consumerism.
This paper examines an important aspect of the politicisation of contingent work: the evolution of grassroots organising strategies by immigrant day labourers, an allegedly ‘unorganisable’ class of contingent workers. The paper focuses on the ways in which repertoires of contestation – based in a philosophy of social transformation through radical democracy and Popular Education – have defused from mass-movement social struggles in Latin America in the 1980s to street-corner organising in US cities today. Through a series of in-depth interviews with day labour organisers, the paper: (1) follows the continental travels of Popular Education methodologies; and (2) explores how organising approaches from the global South have been adapted and recombined to meet the challenges presented by day labour markets in the US which are characterised by rampant violations of core labour standards.
In this paper I use New York’s taxi industry and the struggle around GPS technologies to articulate some essential aspects of a new regime of labour subsumption that is taking shape, most evidently in cities. I argue that these new aspects of labour subsumption may be useful in understanding changes in labour regimes across industries in the neoliberal period. Finally, I attempt to demonstrate connections between theories of labour subsumption and practices of labour organising. I contend that labour subsumption theory and specific forms of labour organisation show a clear relationship in the past and thus, if we are able to discern significant developments in the modes by which capital subsumes labour in the present neoliberal period, this could offer new insights in the domain of labour organising strategies.
This study shows the remarkable similarity in the interests, motivations, perceptions and satisfaction levels of the long-term residents and the more recent arrivals in a gentrifying Toronto neighbourhood. The survey shows that long-term residents, mostly homeowners, welcome the changes and express their strong satisfaction with their neighbourhood and community. Gentrification did not create a large disparity between the established residents and newcomers and both groups appear to be motivated by similar interests. Both the new arrivals and the long-term residents are renovating and upgrading the neighbourhood. The findings depict gentrification – where sitting tenants are protected by rent controls – as a conflict free process welcomed by long-term residents. However, the ease of this neighbourhood’s transition makes it potentially more problematic as the indirect consequences of the reduction in the low priced housing stock are not apparent to the public and, therefore, less likely to be seen as a problem needing redress.
The recent trend to develop rural land in western China has resulted in the large-scale relocation of villagers. It has also given rise to self-help development of housing. By examining long-established research on both formal urban development and informal village settlements, this study examines self-built housing, collective-endorsed housing and urban relocation housing in one western Chinese village. Their coexistence was made possible by ambiguities in property rights. The state–collective divide and the urban–rural dichotomy in property rights were restructured in land development, and villagers were able to use various means to take advantage of transitional, favourable deals to gain short- or long-term returns. Specifically, self-developed housing met market demands and traditional lifestyles, but witnessed a gap between de jure and de facto property rights and could not be easily formalised, whereas officially sanctioned relocation provided long-term homeownership but with ambiguous de jure property rights and failed to fully integrate villagers into urban neighbourhoods. To a lesser extent, collective endorsement added to the legitimacy of self-help development.
This paper investigates the extent to which slum notification, a tenure formalization policy that officially recognises settlements as slums and ensures the occupancy rights of the residents, has stimulated housing investment by the households in India. In using a nationally representative data set, propensity score methods are employed to reduce selection bias. This paper finds that given the observed household characteristics adjusted by propensity scores, slum notification will increase the average amount of money spent on housing construction, though the proportion of households who would improve their houses is estimated to be higher in non-formalized settlements. The findings suggest that not only formalizing slums but also supporting self-help efforts by the residents of non-formalized slums would be effective for improving their housing conditions.
This paper looks at the impacts of the 2008 global financial crisis on Leeds, a medium sized city in northern England, which in the last decades has specialised in finance-related economic activities. Our aim is to understand if the largely neoliberal pre-crisis urban growth model pursued in Leeds, based significantly on real estate speculation, retail and finance, was put at risk by the crisis and whether a collective reflection by local leaders took place about the need to change direction. To do that we have conducted interviews with experts in the city and analysed policy documents in detail. We focus, in particular, on how the crisis was constructed as affecting Leeds and more specifically if the socio-economic development trajectory and associated urban governance model have changed. We conclude that there has been little reflection and questioning of the underlying principles of the urban growth and governance model in Leeds.
Using survey data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, this study shows that immigrants living in segregated residential areas are more likely to report discrimination because of their ethnic background. This applies to both segregated areas where most neighbours are immigrants from the same country of origin as the surveyed person and segregated areas where most neighbours are immigrants from other countries of origin. The results suggest that housing discrimination rather than self-selection plays an important role in immigrant residential segregation.
Capturing the increase in land value attributable to transit accessibility has become an increasingly examined alternative to fund the transit system, one which demands reliable estimates of the impact of transport improvement on property values. In the context of value capture, this study presents a new method to value transit accessibility. We integrate the Heckman selection model and spatial econometric techniques to account for two issues that are often overlooked in the conventional hedonic price analysis: sample selection and spatial autocorrelation. The modelling framework is applied to the city of Boston to assess the impact of the subway system on single-family property values and gauge the potential for value capture. We find that failing to correct for sample selection and spatial autocorrelation results in significant bias in valuing transit accessibility. This bias might distort estimates of the value-added effect of transit infrastructure investment and misguide policy design for value-capture programmes.
Analysing census and industry data at the metro and neighbourhood levels, this paper seeks to identify the location characteristics associated with artistic clusters and determine how these characteristics vary across different places. We find that the arts cannot be taken overall as an urban panacea, but rather that their impact is place-specific and policy ought to reflect these nuances. However, our work also finds that, paradoxically, the arts’ role in developing metro economies is as highly underestimated as it is overgeneralised. While arts clusters exhibit unique industry, scale and place-specific attributes, we also find evidence that they cluster in ‘innovation districts’, suggesting they can play a larger role in economic development. To this end, our results raise important questions and point toward new approaches for arts-based urban development policy that look beyond a focus on the arts as amenities to consider the localised dynamics between the arts and other industries.
Vehicle miles travelled (VMT) is a primary performance indicator for land use and transportation, bringing with it both positive and negative externalities. This study updates and refines previous work on VMT in urbanised areas, using recent data, additional metrics and structural equation modelling (SEM). In a cross-sectional model for 2010, population, income and freeway capacity are positively related to VMT, while gasoline prices, development density and transit service levels are negatively related. Findings of the cross-sectional model are generally confirmed in a more tightly controlled longitudinal study of changes in VMT between 2000 and 2010, the first model of its kind. The cross-sectional and longitudinal models together, plus the transportation literature generally, give us a basis for generalising across studies to arrive at elasticity values of VMT with respect to different urban variables.
This paper presents a morphological study of 100 main street networks from urban areas around the world. An expansion in the scale of main street networks was revealed using a unique heuristic visual method for identifying and measuring the lengths of main street segments from each of the study areas. Case studies were selected and grouped according to corresponding urban design paradigms, ranging from antiquity to present day. This research shows that the average lengths of main street segments from networks of historic (i.e. ancient, medieval, renaissance, baroque and industrial) and informal case studies are much smaller relative to those from networks of more contemporary case studies (i.e. Garden City, Radiant City and New Urbanism). This study provides empirical evidence in support of prior, observational claims suggesting a consistent pattern in the smaller scale of main street networks from traditional urban areas, termed the ‘400-metre rule’. Additionally, it makes the case for further empirical research into similarly recursive spatial patterns within other elements of urban form (i.e. plots, blocks, etc.) that, if discovered, could aid in future urban design efforts to help provide the framework for more ‘human-scale’ urban environments.
This paper explores the way community groups, central to new systems of local governance, are related to local institutions and how those relations influence them. We draw from two theoretical approaches – behavioural and institutional – that offer different answers to the question: what makes community groups thrive? Based on an analysis of 386 community groups in the Netherlands, we distinguish four types of groups: feather light, cooperative, networked and nested groups. Then, in a neighbourhood case study we focus on the relations between groups and local institutions to gain a deeper insight into the institutional dynamics of urban governance. Moreover, we combine the findings of both studies claiming that different groups need different things from local institutions, and that in the current NPM-driven world only the higher educated community groups have productive relationships with local institutions, while others are somewhere in between frail contacts and failing demands.
Children’s independent mobility (CIM), or a child’s freedom to explore their neighbourhood unsupervised, is important for their psychological development and potentially enables daily physical activity. However, the correlates of CIM remain under-studied particularly in terms of the influence of the neighbourhood environment. Within this context, children’s independent mobility in Toronto, Canada, was examined using linear regression and ordered logit models. Findings demonstrate that a higher level of CIM was correlated with more physical activity. Parental perceptions related to neighbourhood safety, stranger danger and sociability were associated with CIM. A child’s independent mobility was also correlated with age, sex, language spoken at home and parental travel attitudes. Interventions to increase CIM should focus on enhancing the neighbourhood social environment. Increasing the independent mobility of girls and of children with diverse ethno-cultural backgrounds are also worthy of particular research and policy attention.
The paper argues that understanding the ways in which criminals interact with state and non-state actors is crucial to construct a more accurate picture of how local governance arrangements are unfolding in urban policy-making in Latin America. Based on the experience of Medellin, Colombia, it is discussed that alongside decades of violence, rapid urbanisation and economic liberal reforms, the local state has built capacity for service provision and new governance arrangements. But this capacity has not weakened criminal actors’ operations and interactions with society and state actors. By focusing on the neighbourhood level, the paper demonstrates the existence of different strategies that have allowed criminals to benefit from governance arrangements, originally created to promote participatory democracy and urban development. The paper calls for studies to incorporate the role of criminals in contexts where boundaries between illegal and legal spheres of action, and formal and informal arrangements are continuously blurred.
There is a consensus in China that industrialization, urbanization, globalization and information technology will enhance China’s urban competitiveness. We have developed a methodology for the analysis of urban competitiveness that we have applied to China’s 25 principal cities during three periods from 1990 through 2009. Our model uses data for 12 variables, to which we apply appropriate statistical techniques. We are able to examine the competitiveness of inland cities and those on the coast, how this has changed during the two decades of the study, the competitiveness of Mega Cities and of administrative centres, and the importance of each variable in explaining urban competitiveness and its development over time. This analysis will be of benefit to Chinese planners as they seek to enhance the competitiveness of China and its major cities in the future.
This paper uses Guangzhou’s experience of hosting the 2010 Asian Games to illustrate Guangzhou’s engagement with scalar politics. This includes concurrent processes of intra-regional restructuring to position Guangzhou as a central city in south China and a ‘negotiated scale-jump’ to connect with the world under conditions negotiated in part with the overarching strong central state, testing the limit of Guangzhou’s geopolitical expansion. Guangzhou’s attempts were aided further by using the Asian Games as a vehicle for addressing condensed urban spatial restructuring to enhance its own production/accumulation capacities, and for facilitating urban redevelopment projects to achieve a ‘global’ appearance and exploit the city’s real estate development potential. Guangzhou’s experience of hosting the Games provides important lessons for expanding our understanding of how regional cities may pursue their development goals under the strong central state and how event-led development contributes to this.
The paper describes the fiscal status of the city of Detroit leading up to its filing for bankruptcy on 18 July 2013. Then the economic history of metropolitan Detroit and the city of Detroit from 1950 to the present is examined in an effort to answer these questions: Why did Detroit file for bankruptcy – not some other major city? And why now and not earlier? The paper concludes that, while Detroit and several other cities in the northeastern region suffered major population and employment losses and went through a long period of urban crisis between roughly 1970 and 1990, the severity of Detroit’s problems compared with other cities did not emerge fully until the most recent decade.
This paper provides a detailed examination of the construction of Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA). The paper begins by reviewing recent work which has reconceptualised how airports are understood in spatial terms. It then describes the development of Hong Kong’s new airport, discussing the spatial format of the new airport design at HKIA, and the relationship between aviation and non-aviation uses. Next, it examines the impact of the airport on the rapidly shifting territorial politics of Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta within the wider Chinese state. The paper argues that this case study must be assessed as part of a wider project of state territorial restructuring.
This paper investigates how Catholic-inspired services for homeless people are delivered in Turin, Italy. The purpose is to critically interrogate particular faith-based organisations’ moral discourses on homelessness, and to show how they are enacted through practices of care directed at the homeless subject. The paper contributes to the geographical literature on faith-based organisations addressing its shortcomings – namely the lack of critical and contextual focus on faith-based organisations’ ‘love for the poor’. To address this point, the paper takes a vitalist perspective on the urban and introduces the notion of the ‘entanglements of faith’, which allows an integrated and grounded perspective on faith-based organisations’ interventions. The outcomes of the work suggest that these faith-based organisations propose standardised services that, producing particular assemblages and affective atmospheres, have deep emotional and relational effects on their recipients. Further lines of research are sketched in the conclusions.
This paper reveals how urban theories traditionally rooted in northern cities and academies are challenged and redeveloped by southern perspectives. Critiques of urban theory as narrowly northern (or Anglo-American) have recently emerged, spawning the comparative urbanism movement that calls for urban theories to be open to the experiences of all cities. Using the example of the sale of state-subsidised houses in South Africa, this research uses two parallel concepts, gentrification and downward raiding, to challenge the northern empirical focus of urban theory. Despite describing similar processes of urban class-based change, the concepts are rarely considered analogous, entrenched in divergent empirical contexts and academic literatures. While gentrification debates largely reference the northern central city, downward raiding is reserved for the southern ‘slum’. In contrast, this research develops ‘hybrid gentrification’ as a concept and methodological approach that demonstrates how non-northern urban experiences can and should create and refine urban theory.
This paper examines the processes by which middle-class belonging is generated, through the exploration of social and spatial trajectories in narratives of residential choice and mobility. It is based on an understanding of residential choice as indicative and constitutive of social mobilities. In particular the paper builds on the discussion of the match between habitus and field that lies at the root of the notions of middle-class belonging and place attachments to draw attention not only to the conditions under which ‘fit’ is possible, but also acknowledge that belonging is a dynamic process, generated and maintained through residence that feeds back into understandings of classed identities. This paper argues that residential space is not just appropriated to reflect pre-existing tastes and lifestyles, but may also contribute in the transformation of habitus to fit to particular neighbourhoods and ways of living.
Across the westernised world, concerns about climate change and resource scarcity point to the need for widescale changes in housing renovation. Through the exploration of social interactions of eco-renovation businesses on the ground, the paper presents evidence for the emergence of an ‘eco-renovation niche’ consisting of both traditional and new types of housing industry businesses. However, this niche is not clearly bounded, stable or homogenous, and so generalised ideas about how it may grow in scale or size are problematic. Niche participants typically wish to stay small. Also, complex household relations are involved, and hands-on experimentation is a feature of the industry participants. For policy purposes, this suggests a need to focus on strategic intermediaries in industry and professional associations, licensing bodies and regulators, who could in turn support programmes that more adequately recognise the modus operandi of the industry, households and civil society organisations.
This study develops a theoretical concept of how regional cultural values develop, manifest, and become visible in regional images. Moreover, it tests the impact of regional images on attracting interregional migrants. Specifically, we test whether the values held by inhabitants of particular regions can explain variances in intra-country migration. Analyses are conducted on data collected from official statistics and from the European Social Survey on the level of European NUTS 2 regions. Cultural values are measured using a selection of items from the Human Value Scale developed by Shalom Schwartz. Analyses show that independent from unemployment rates, economic prosperity, and the degree of urbanization, net migration rates are dependent upon the cultural values held by the inhabitants of a region. Individuals are more likely to migrate to regions where inhabitants adopt hedonistic values and a certain degree of ‘social indifference’.
This paper examines whether receipt of a Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) grant has a causal impact on plant total factor productivity (TFP). To tackle the problem of self-selection into the treatment group, propensity score matching is employed. In order to control for the endogeneity of other variables in the model, estimations are performed using the system GMM estimator. The results show that for low technology manufacturing, receipt of an RSA grant leads to a fall in TFP.
The specificity of Hong Kong’s gentrification trajectory reflects its urban morphology, political institutions, and social and economic structure. While continuously renewing itself economically, much of the city’s inner urban area building stock is old and functionally obsolete, whilst nevertheless providing affordable, well-located housing for lower-income and disadvantaged groups and small-scale commercial clusters. Constrained redevelopment is not the result of economic decline but rather of formidable frictions that make land assembly and vacant possession of buildings difficult. Hong Kong’s executive-led, quasi democratic government articulates with the public ownership of land and its management through the leasehold system, and leads inner-city redevelopment through the Urban Renewal Authority (URA) supported by various institutional and statutory arrangements. (Re)development is favoured because it generates significant state revenue from physical and economic intensification of sites. Although gentrification is not an agenda of the URA, it is a significant outcome of its redevelopment activities.
While studies on residential and job mobility are typically conducted on a micro scale, an examination of region-wide mobility dynamics can also be meaningful, as it can reflect the importance of system-wide factors and complex interlinkages among numerous micro-level decisions. This study explores how region-wide residential and job mobility rates vary in the US and identifies factors that shape their variation with emphasis on the interplay between the two mobility variables for the periods before (2005–2007) and during (2008–2010) the recent recession. An analysis of the data for 342 US metropolitan areas shows that job mobility had a sizable positive impact on residential mobility during both time spans, while the reverse connection was found to be relatively weaker and context-sensitive. The analysis also detects the critical roles of housing market conditions and regional economic structures, suggesting that mobility decisions are largely shaped by various macro-level factors.
In the post-Fordist economy, culture has become an important resource for cities to compete at the regional and international levels. Thus, local elites have used culture as an instrument of urban regeneration and these processes increasingly seek to promote urban branding. Moreover, culture is seen as a way to generate narratives that help cities avoid the perception of standardisation, characterise cities as a unique urban space and create authenticity, which are necessary elements if a city is to be globally competitive. The case of central Barcelona and, specifically, the Raval district is exemplary and singular: the joint action of the cultural institutions and representatives of the cultural sector based in the neighbourhood have turned the Raval into an brand space of ‘authentic Barcelona’ that makes the official, tourist-frequented Barcelona more rich and complex.
Faced with the challenge of developing sustainable cities, the Chinese government sets green construction as part of the national strategy to reduce energy consumption. However, the consumer market has shown limited response to such policies. To upscale green building, it is crucial to understand the market demands for green apartments. This article employs a conjoint model to estimate the willingness to pay for green dwellings versus accessibility to metros and jobs and neighbourhood quality by different socio-economic groups in Nanjing, China. Results show that the socio-economic status of homebuyers determines their willingness to pay for green attributes. Only the rich are prepared to pay for green apartments to improve their living comfort. To all, the notion of health is appealing as consumers are willing to pay for an unpolluted environment and for non-toxic construction materials used in buildings in good locations.
Why do some partnerships form successfully while others fail? Much has been written about the conditions for successful partnership formation, however the qualities of the policy issue itself have rarely been central to this debate. Drawing on qualitative research about a food policymaking initiative in Baltimore, Maryland, this article explores the ‘convening power’ of food as a policy topic, and the relationship between civic capital and the politics of urban growth in horizontal partnerships. Drawing from Nelles’ framework for inter-municipal cooperation, and Logan and Molotch’s urban growth machine model, the article presents a set of conditions for successful partnership formation that elaborates on the underlying urban growth consensus that drives civic capital in the city. Baltimore’s food policy efforts suggest that a policy issue may show greater ‘partnerability’ when an initiative can generate both exchange and use value, thereby appealing widely to the local growth coalition and other stakeholders.
In parts of Latin America, new developments in, and struggles over, governance at the local level have emerged as part of political and policy paradigms which to a greater or lesser degree reject neoliberalism. They can be found in a range of contexts, take a variety of different forms, and have experienced differing outcomes. This article critically explores a number of these developments. It argues that, both practically and conceptually, these developments expand the parameters of what is usually thought of as local governance, and may be of increasing relevance as the impact of the post-2008 financial crisis and economic depression creates conditions in parts of the north more comparable to those in which radical alternatives emerged in Latin America.
This paper examines the new dynamism of China’s urbanization in which urbanism has been actively pursued by municipal governments as a strategy to negotiate and contest with the new power relations established by the post-reform regime in the era of neoliberalization. The research identifies the salient features of urbanization and urban land development since the 1990s, probes into their social and political origins, and evaluates the effects of Chinese urban revolutions from above on economic growth, regional inequality and social volatility. The data analysed include those gathered from the national level and from the Guangzhou metropolis in southern China. The interwoven processes of state power reshuffling, urban land development and municipal finance in contemporary China are believed to have constituted a significant and controversial case for critical evaluation of the political origins of urban revolutions in the age of global urbanism and their uneven socioeconomic consequences.
Land use change is not only the consequence of economic growth but also its direct and indirect driver. Based on official land use change data from 2004 to 2008, this study found substantial land use changes in China, with considerable cultivated land conversion into urban, industrial and transportation purposes. Correlation analysis shows a strong association between land use change and absolute GDP expansion. Structural equation analysis indicates that economic growth drives land use change. Industrial land expansion directly stimulates economic growth. Land has been successfully used as a tool to attract foreign investments and to sustain infrastructure investments, indirectly triggering economic growth. The findings suggest that land is not a simple factor of production but a strategic tool for economic development in urban China.
Relatively little has been recorded about the relationships among ethnicity, corruption and conflict over urban land, especially at community level. The stories of land matters in four lower-income settlements in Nairobi, Kenya, drawn from extensive interviews with their occupants and officials and field observations, shed light on the roles of corruption and ethnicity in land conflicts and the character of violence involved. At the same time, they reveal new details of competition for urban land rights. In these cases, land conflict seemed to promote corruption and the use of ethnicity, while corruption and ethnicity were able to alter the relationship of this conflict to violence. There are findings here regarding sources of urban violence in general.
This paper explores the concept of the post-secular city by examining the growing presence of Street-Pastors in the night-time economy of British cities. Street-Pastors are Christian volunteers who work to ensure the safety of people on a ‘night out’. We contribute to work that has called for greater attention to be placed on the ways in which religious faith and ethics are performed to create liminal spaces of understanding in urban areas. Drawing upon in-depth ethnographic research conducted in a range of UK towns and cities, we consider this distinct form of faith-based patrolling in relation to the spatial processes and practices of urban-nightscapes. By exploring the geographies of Street-Pastors, we not only contribute to more nuanced accounts of ‘drinking spaces’ but provide an empirical engagement with the growing body of work on urban rhythms and encounters.
Historically, while cities such as Mozambique’s capital Maputo have been analysed as divided into ‘formal ‘and ‘informal’ spaces, contemporary approaches tend to emphasise the heterogeneity and plasticity of African urbanities. Drawing upon original ethnographic material gathered from fieldwork in 2012/2013, we reframe the analysis of such cities through recognition of novel forms of urban imaginaries, emergent narratively, that may take the shape of dichotomies or trichotomies reconfiguring hegemonic notions such as formal–informal, centre–periphery or urban–suburban. In conclusion, it is suggested that this citywide ongoing process highlights the importance of appreciating dynamic discursive engagements with urban space, which not only are at odds with hegemonic definitions of the city but also, crucially, impinge on people’s own urban strategies – in Maputo as well as elsewhere.
This study explores whether cross-level interaction between individual and neighbourhood socioeconomic status (SES) is associated with social trust. A cross-sectional questionnaire survey was conducted with 4123 randomly selected people aged 20 years and older from 72 districts in the city of Kashiwa in 2009, and 1720 questionnaires were analysed. People of low SES tended to have higher trust in the national government and lower trust in neighbours as residential district SES increased. By contrast, people of high SES had relatively constant levels of both general and local aspects of social trust, despite local district SES. We found that perceptions of trust among people of low SES are more likely to be influenced by district-level SES than among people of high SES. This highlights the importance of considering the cross-level interaction of individual and neighbourhood SES as this interaction can either raise or lower social trust in communities.
Although minority and immigrant entrepreneurs in the US have chosen to concentrate in low-profit retail and service lines of business clustered geographically in urban minority neighbourhoods, their reasons for doing so are unclear. We investigate their motivations by analysing viability among urban small businesses; specifically, we compare the longevity of firms targeting clients in minority neighbourhoods to those serving clients in nonminority-white residential areas. Our broader concerns are to understand why the entrepreneurial occupational choice has been embraced. A key objective is to identify specific barriers that may retard small-firm creation and development in minority-neighbourhood environs. While some claim this market offers attractive opportunities, others stress that predominance of minority- and immigrant-owned firms in this sector reflects the fact that only the least desirable market niches are accessible to them. We find that serving local clienteles in minority neighbourhoods is strongly related to firm closure and low profitability.
The rise of reassurance policing in the UK, informed by ideas drawn from a Signal Crimes Perspective, replaced a narrow focus on controlling crime with a broader emphasis on communicating security. This paper provides a sympathetic critique of dominant assumptions implied in this policy shift concerning the reassurance function of policing. Important in these theoretically informed policy debates is the idea that the police and their partners, through symbolic communications, can influence the extent to which individuals perceive that order and security exist within urban spaces. The paper draws on research findings to illustrate the contrasting ways visible signifiers of crime and formal controls are received and interpreted by diverse audiences. It challenges assumptions about the impact of criminal activities upon perceptions of safety and contributes insights into the unintended effects of formal controls that have implications for our understanding of local social order.
In this paper we carry out a meta-analytic review of the literature on culture-led local development models. We identify and discuss three typical fallacies characterising mono-causal culture-led development schemes: instrumentalism, over-engineering, and parochialism. We then discuss their analytical background, and provide examples illustrating the consequences of each. Based upon this critical discussion, we make a case for a ‘new territorial thinking’ approach that takes into account the tangled hierarchy of global and local viewpoints that is connatural to spatially situated cultural production, and focuses upon a non-linear, multi-causal scheme as the only possible framework for the policy design of credible, socially accountable, culture-led development strategies.
The broad intent of smart growth is to reduce development in environmentally sensitive areas by limiting the outward expansion of development and redirecting private investment to urban areas. Local decisions that shape and constrain land uses can pit narrow economic interests against broader-based environmental organisations and impact decisions on smart growth. Based on the political market framework, this study specifically examines the influence of pro-growth and smart-growth interest groups on smart growth policies adopted by local governments in the state of Massachusetts, USA. The results suggest both real estate interests and environmental groups influence local policy decisions, and depending on the policy, the characteristics of local political institutions mediate these influences.
This paper explores the sources of legitimacy of regional governance networks and pays special attention to the aspect of credibility. We argue that legitimacy of regional governance networks is not only based on legality, justifiability, and consent, but also on the ability of the regional governance network to gain credibility in the shadow of hierarchical decision making. Credibility has not received the same degree of attention as other aspects of legitimacy. However, networked forms of governing – such as regional governance – to a large extent rely on the belief held by participating governmental actors and higher levels of government in this type of collaboration and governing. They must be convinced of the added value of this type of collaboration. We empirically illustrate the importance of credibility as an aspect of legitimacy, using two examples of cases of regional housing governance in the Netherlands.
This paper looks at the geographical dimension of firm networking in Norway, by examining the impact of manager-level, firm-level and regional-level variables on the decisions of firms to collaborate with partners at different levels of geographical distance. Using data stemming from a survey of 1604 businesses in five Norwegian city-regions, we model firms’ use of partners located within the region, elsewhere in the country and abroad, respectively. The results indicate that collaboration is affected in different ways by variables related to all three levels. At the level of the manager, trust is an important predictor of regional and national collaboration, but has no significant effect on the formation of international partnerships, which are fundamentally associated with factors such as education and the open-mindedness of managers. At the regional level, R&D expenditure tends to increase collaboration between regional actors, but reduces the likelihood of engagement with international partners. Education, by contrast, has the opposite effect: it encourages international collaboration at the expense of local links. The results highlight the need to balance policies for boosting regional social capital and R&D with investments in education and fostering open-mindedness as a means to prevent lock-in and develop innovation-enhancing global pipelines.
This paper proposes four metrics to measure sprawl in metropolitan regions as marginal changes in land use over time. The metrics (change in urban housing unit density, marginal land consumption per new urban household, housing unit density in newly urbanized areas and percent of new housing units located in previously developed areas) are computed for all 329 metropolitan areas in the continental USA for 1980 and 2000. Regression analysis is used to explain variations in sprawl metrics across metropolitan areas, incorporating variables representing market, geographic and policy factors. Changes in development patterns reflect interactions of market and geographic structures. States with a substantial state role in planning accommodate a higher percentage of new housing units in previously developed areas and with lower marginal land consumption, suggesting that policy can mitigate sprawl development.
Gated communities are often seen as steps towards the privatization of the public realm. This is too simple a characterization, however: privately and publicly governed infrastructure and services exist and adapt symbiotically. There is little empirical research focusing on the co-evolution of private and public neighbourhoods. In this paper we focus on a specific question that has not yet been answered: does the spatial pattern of privately supplied public goods co-evolve with the pattern of publicly supplied public goods? We examine this question through a case study of Seoul, where club residential communities are common enough to test co-evolution hypotheses. We identify co-evolutionary relationships between club goods supplied in condominiums and public goods supplied by municipalities and market. We also find evidence of Tieboutian intra-urban market and show how the substitution of club goods for positive urban externalities seems to weaken the influence of general accessibility on residential locational behaviour.
There is a consensus that urban development schemes in India bear little resemblance to the well-thought-out plans of their genesis, and that the boundary between formal/informal is often blurry. I seek to contribute to this literature by showing how, in spite of efforts to implement a regulatory scheme, street hawking in Delhi remains highly informal and in a state of negotiated (im)permanence. I compare two recent conflicts over street hawkers’ use of public space, which demonstrate that power is dispersed across a range of sites and rests with a number of state and non-state actors. I argue that preconceived notions of ‘formality’ and ‘informality’ are of little value in understanding urban processes, and instead it is necessary to understand how the boundary between formal/informal is produced and contested both juridically and through everyday practices of enforcement and evasion/subversion.
Municipal corporate centres not only perform multiple administrative functions, including supervision, monitoring and budgeting of the overall operation of local government, but also absorb significant resources. From a public policy perspective, it is thus important to determine whether administrative scale economies exist. Adopting an econometric approach, this paper investigates administrative scale effects and the determinants of administrative intensity at the corporate level for 22 local authorities in the Malaysian state of Sabah from 2000 to 2009. Our results indicate that there is an inverted U-shaped scale effect for staff size on administrative intensity in the small urban sample, while own-source revenue is the most important factor in determining administrative intensity in all local authorities and big urban samples. Several policy recommendations are proposed.
Urban growth continues to rise globally, especially in and around small cities and peri-urban areas of the developing world. In Mexico, a culture of maize production still exists alongside rapid urban and industrial growth, which exemplifies a hybridized urban-rural landscape. This paper discusses a study of household land-use and livelihood strategies in the Toluca Metropolitan Area, west of Mexico City, a traditional maize-growing region that has experienced rapid urban growth. Logistic regression combined with ethnographic data illustrate that maize is being abandoned to some extent as producers age and non-farm income sources surge. At the same time, some maize still persists for tradition and security as non-farm income is often volatile. Our results reflect a persistence of maize in peri-urban areas of central Mexico, which should not be ignored by policy and planning.
This study examines the process of housing redevelopment, using data of single-family residential redevelopment that occurred in all 128 inner-ring suburbs of Chicago, USA, located in Cook County, between 2000 and 2010. Using exploratory spatial data analysis techniques, I identify the magnitude and the spatial locations of redevelopment, revealing the different types of suburban neighbourhoods in which redevelopment occurs. I then examine how the location and extent of redevelopment changed between 2000 and 2010 and how the physical manifestation of redevelopment varied across different types of suburban neighbourhoods. Findings reveal that redevelopment is spatially clustered, occurring in a variety of places ranging from modest middle-income neighbourhoods to very highly affluent neighbourhoods. Redevelopment often began in areas with high property values, and as house prices rose rapidly through the first half of the decade, it expanded into adjacent, less affluent neighbourhoods, retracting again at the end of the decade.
Previous studies of the relationship between interethnic attitudes and the ethnic composition of neighbourhoods have overlooked the impact of neighbourhood problems in ethnically concentrated neighbourhoods. This paper examines the influence of neighbourhood disorder and decline (i.e. increasing disorder) on interethnic attitudes, controlling for the ethnic composition of the neighbourhood. Neighbourhood disorder and decline are measured by indicators of social and physical neighbourhood problems. Additionally, we examine the extent to which the impact of (increasing) disorder on interethnic attitudes depends on the particular ethnic composition of the neighbourhood. Using a geocoded data set covering 1435 neighbourhoods in The Netherlands, we analyse interethnic attitudes among four ethnic minority groups and the native Dutch population. Multilevel analyses show that for both ethnic minority and native Dutch residents neighbourhood decline is associated with negative attitudes towards ethnic minority groups, particularly in neighbourhoods with many ethnic minority residents.
This paper examines the time-series properties of house price to earnings ratio (HPER) in the UK using aggregate and regional data. Specifically, we utilise a series of unit root tests to examine the null hypothesis of nonstationary HPERs. These include linear tests as well as a nonlinear test and also a test which accounts for abrupt structural change. The results are against the notion of stationary HPERs. This implies that house prices may permanently diverge from earnings.
A significant number of immigrants fail to realise their full potential in the US labour markets, as evidenced by those working in occupations requiring skill levels far below their own level of education. While previous studies have studied immigrant underemployment with a focus on individual labour force characteristics, the spatial dimensions of immigrant underemployment have been largely overlooked. Using microdata from the 2006–2010 American Community Survey and a multilevel research design, this study examines the interaction of metropolitan labour market characteristics with individual labour force’s underemployment experiences, and explores how these interaction effects differ between the foreign-born and the native-born. Results suggest that the probability of individual labour force’s underemployment within any metropolitan area is highly contingent on metropolitan labour market characteristics including ethnic diversity, the proportion of its foreign-born population, the economic structure, and the level of educational attainment of the labour force, in addition to individual characteristics.
This study investigates determinants of happiness and job satisfaction of urban locals, first-generation migrants and new-generation migrants in China’s urban workforce. We present evidence to suggest that new-generation migrants are less satisfied with their jobs and lives than first-generation migrants, despite having higher income. This finding is consistent with aspirations rising faster than income in China’s fast-growing urban economy.
Urban agriculture (UA) has recently received increasing attention in both scholarly and policy cycles as a potential tool for poverty alleviation in sub-Saharan Africa. This paper focuses on urban crop cultivation (UCC) and examines men’s and women’s motives and needs in UCC, the (perceived) contribution of UCC to household livelihoods, and the benefits men and women derive from it. Although the contribution of UCC to overall household food and incomes appeared to be modest, for the majority of farming households such benefits were nonetheless greatly valued and bore varied and important meanings for men and women. The paper also examines the implications of recent national UA policy responses in Kenya for urban development and household livelihoods, and for equitable distribution of UA’s benefits for men and women.
Most current scientific policies incorporate debates on cities and the geographic organisation of scientific activity. Research on ‘world cities’ develops the idea that interconnected agglomerations can better take advantage of international competition. Thus, the increasing concentration of activities in these cities at the expense of others could be observed by certain scholars using measures based on scientific publications. Others, however, show that an opposite trend is emerging: the largest cities are undergoing a relative decline in a country’s scientific activities. To go beyond this seeming contradiction, this paper provides a global analysis of all countries with papers in the Web of Science over the period 1987–2007. The author’s addresses were geocoded and grouped into agglomerations. Registering of papers was based on the fractional counting of multi-authored publications, and the results are unambiguous: deconcentration is the dominant trend both globally and within countries, with some exceptions for which explanations are suggested.
This paper builds on earlier data presented in an Urban Studies paper for a major household survey in 2002 that evaluated the impact of title regularization intervention among low-income homeowners in ten colonias in Starr County, Texas. In 2011 the research team returned to those low-income households, oversampling more than half of them in order to compare and analyse the extent and nature of housing improvement, levels of overcrowding and access to home amenities, and the methods of financing for home improvement and extension. Significant improvements and investments were observed totalling an average of almost US$9000 over ten years, mostly financed out of income and savings, although an increasing trend to seek loans from the formal market was observed. Correlation analysis explores how self-help and self-managed dwelling environments are adapted to family and household dynamics over the life course. Awareness of ‘green’ housing applications and sustainability is discussed.
Urban density policy, usually implemented through a floor area ratio (FAR) plan, may become increasingly important in achieving such goals as environmental sustainability or acting as an incentive to promote transit-orientated development. Nonetheless there seems a lack of guidance on FAR distribution. In order to provide FAR distribution guidelines, in particular with the goal of incorporating sustainability and market demand, this paper develops a step-by-step, quantitative residential FAR distribution alternative based on both the advantages of the location and the market demand for the locations. It consists of two major steps: floor area generation and FAR distribution; the latter being the focus of this paper. The methods applied involve the measurement of accessibility within geographic information systems and the hedonic price model. A simulation analysis of this FAR distribution method is conducted to develop a FAR plan for a plan area, and is then applied to demonstrate how the FAR plan can be modified if mass rapid transit stations are introduced.
This paper is based on qualitative interviews (n=20) conducted with individuals working or residing within a heavily depopulated section of the city of Detroit. This area is the projected site of an urban agriculture (UA) project, which proposes to utilise vacant land and economically marginalised residents to produce marketable products and services. With a few exceptions, neighbourhood respondents had little hope of improvement occurring in the neighbourhood anytime soon, and few expectations for UA to alter the daily life or social dynamic of the area. These findings are framed and interpreted using Wacquant’s (1999) concept of advanced marginality and Sampson’s (2012) arguments concerning neighbourhood effects. While some neighbourhood improvement efforts were viewed positively, others were regarded with intense suspicion, indicating that idealistic UA efforts may have some work to do in terms of engaging residents and offsetting legacies of displacement as well as on-going marginalisation.
This paper argues for an increased emphasis on the institutions of risk governance and management in understanding urban resilience. This moves analysis of vulnerability away from a focus on individuals to also consider risk management regimes as co-productive of vulnerability and resilience in the City. This is illustrated through the application of an Adaptive Capacity Index to unpack the role played by formal governance institutions in mediating resilience to extreme heat events in the empirical case of London. Analysis shows that the configuration of risk at the institutional level directs heat wave risk management through the health services, and operationalises it during the emergency phase of hazard onset. This misses an important opportunity for integrating individual and regime level risk management initiatives, which we proposed can be worked out through greater collaboration with social services and interaction with those caring for the vulnerable, has yet to be fully integrated into planning and practice in London and elsewhere.
The paper considers the notion that innovation in territorial governance is associated with a set of core neoliberal ideas about local economic development which have come to constitute a new and pervasive consensus. Through a case study of attempts to construct city-regional institutions in Manchester, England, over a period of 25 years, it attempts to track the themes that have underpinned the development of a local politics of economic development. The paper considers the extent to which evolution of city-regional institutions and policy accord to wider ideas about post-political forms of governance and the erosion of democracy in cities. It concludes by considering the degree to which this experience is representative of a wider orthodoxy in the governance of local economic development.
This paper considers the suburban night through the recent cultural phenomenon of the Summer Night Market in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada. Night markets have existed in China since the 8th century, and have followed Chinese migration, first to Southeast Asia, and more recently, to Canada. Richmond, because of significant Asian settlement in the 1990s, is known as the ‘new Chinatown’ ethnoburb of Metro Vancouver. Its night market is a weekend evening event where predominantly Asian vendors sell clothing, food and a range of other products to the Chinese community and others attracted by the spectacle or seeking a bargain. The Richmond night-time landscape contrasts sharply with the 24/7 cultures of Hong Kong, Taiwan and Mainland China. But the Richmond market makes possible a cultural use of night-time space – for strolling and meeting at night – in a suburban landscape that is quiet after 18:00 h. In the last three years, the market has been re-branded as a multicultural, rather than Chinese, space. We explore the role of this market in the night-time leisure culture of Metro Vancouver, through themes of the changing nature of the suburbs, suburban night places, and the (messy) question of authenticity in an age (and place) of ongoing migration and super-diversity.
Resilience is an increasingly important urban policy discourse that has been taken up at a rapid pace. Yet there is an apparent gap between the advocacy of social-ecological resilience in scientific literature and its take-up in policy discourse on the one hand, and the demonstrated capacity to govern for resilience in practice on the other. This paper explores this gap by developing a performative account of how social-ecological resilience is dealt with in practice through case study analysis of how protection of biodiversity was negotiated in response to Melbourne’s recent metropolitan planning initiative. It is suggested that a performative account expands the possible opportunities for governing for social-ecological resilience beyond the concept’s use as a metaphor, measurement, cognitive frame or programmatic statement of adaptive management/co-management and has the potential to emerge through what has been called the everyday ‘mangle of practice’ in response to social-ecological feedback inherent to policy processes.
This article examines acculturation preferences of the Turkish second generation in 11 European cities and compares these with expectations of national society comparison group members. Multiple classification analysis (MCA) was used to examine the effects of city of residence, exposure to national society value system, cultural distance, social exclusion and neighbourhood quality on acculturation preferences. MCA was also applied to profile respondents according to background characteristics and dominant acculturation preference style, which is useful for both theory development and design of integration policies for specific target groups. Results show that the majority of the second generation maintain integration preferences, although sub-groups with particular background characteristics such as low educational attainment, experiencing discrimination and living in a low-quality neighbourhood, maintain separation or marginalisation preferences. Contextual factors, notably city of residence, the proxy for national integration policy orientation, seemed more important in explaining acculturation preferences than individual-level factors.
Many peri-urban areas in developing regions are associated with poverty. The poor peri-urban resident may have moved in and established in precarious conditions, or may have resided in the area before the urban encroachment and so have a rural background. Former poor rural residents living on the fringes of cities are considered to be very vulnerable since they are subjected to a livelihood transmutation while they try to escape from poverty. Drawing on longitudinal quantitative and qualitative data from three communities in the periphery of Mexico City, this paper traces the vicious and enabling processes by which peri-urban small farmers change their poverty status over time. The findings support the importance of multidisciplinary explanatory frameworks for understanding poverty dynamics in peri-urban areas. Micro-level process-based analysis may help to support more appropriate and inclusive social and poverty reduction policies in (peri-)urban areas in developing regions.
Socioeconomic inequalities are increasing in many OECD countries, as are punitive welfare reforms that pathologise ‘the poor’. This article draws on the accounts of 100 families in Auckland to consider the impacts of increased social stratification and structural violence on their interactions with a government welfare agency. Each family was recruited through a food bank and was matched with a social worker who used a range of interview, mapping and drawing exercises to document their experiences of adversity over a one-year period. The analysis sheds new light on how institutionalised and abusive relations with these families manifest in spatially located urban interactions. It is argued that poverty is misrecognised at the institutional level and that this nurtures structural violence in service provision interactions.
This paper explains the nature of David Li’s concept of ambiguous property rights and three angles to see right ambiguity from a Coasian-constrained choice-theoretical perspective and elaborate on that ambiguity in terms of five scenarios of de jure and de facto rights. The case of indigenous village housing in post-colonial Hong Kong under a mature system of the rule of law is used to demonstrate the ambiguities due to a gap between de jure and de facto property rights that may not degenerate into anarchy due to rational choices made under common law constraints driven ultimately by the land market. The implications of the case study for evaluating ambiguities in property rights in China are also discussed.
There is a growing interest in exploring the relationships between the built environment and auto ownership and a number of studies have investigated the impact of rail transit on travel behaviour. However, few have disentangled the impact of rail transit on auto ownership from the influences of the built environment and residential self-selection. Using the light rail transit (LRT) in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area, USA, this study applies the statistical control approach and quasi-longitudinal design to examine the effects of LRT, neighbourhood design and self-selection on auto ownership. It is found that residential self-selection influences auto ownership; backyard size, off-street parking and business density marginally affect auto ownership; and the LRT does not have an independent impact on auto ownership beyond neighbourhood design and self-selection. The results point to the importance of neighbourhood design in rail transit development.
Cities around the world are likened to, and remade with reference to, imaginings of antecedent urban experiences elsewhere. The paper begins by identifying inter-referencing effects associated with three different imaginings of urban antecedence in and beyond academic urban studies: the prototypical, paradigmatic city; the city which charts pathways to world city-ness; and the model or ‘best’ city. It is the effects of the third of these imaginings that has received the most sustained critical examination to date. The currently burgeoning literature on urban policy mobilities has proceeded methodologically by following actually existing intercity referential effects. The key argument in this paper is that critical policy mobilities research is problematic in largely reducing inter-referencing effects to neoliberalisation from above, but potentially very helpful for efforts to move beyond the EuroAmerican-centredness that has prevailed in imaginings of urban antecedence in Anglophone urban theory more widely.
Traffic congestion alleviation has long been a common core transport policy objective, but it remains unclear under which conditions this universal byproduct of urban life also impedes the economy. Using panel data for 88 US metropolitan statistical areas, this study estimates congestion’s drag on employment growth (1993 to 2008) and productivity growth per worker (2001 to 2007). Using instrumental variables, results suggest that congestion slows job growth above thresholds of approximately 4.5 minutes of delay per one-way auto commute and 11,000 average daily traffic (ADT) per lane on average across the regional freeway network. While higher ADT per freeway lane appears to slow productivity growth, there is no evidence of congestion-induced travel delay impeding productivity growth. Results suggest that the strict policy focus on travel time savings may be misplaced and, instead, better outlooks for managing congestion’s economic drag lie in prioritising the economically most important trips (perhaps through road pricing) or in providing alternative travel capacity to enable access despite congestion.
It has been suggested that community, social cohesion and territorial ties in neighbourhoods may be characterised by three directions: the lost, the saved and the transformed. On the basis of a number of case studies in a Norwegian city, it is found that these three trends exist together, on the basis of various local interactive practices. The concept of an interaction pretext is developed to answer in a more nuanced way how various forms of social ties are developed, maintained and/or altered. By combining this concept with local activity, four community types are specified that may characterise different neighbourhoods and that may also exist in parallel at one place: the passing-by community, the tight community, the weak community, and the split community. Demonstrating the potential of a more detailed empirical approach to the community question, the paper warns against too analytically shallow suggestions about their development. By understanding how neighbourhoods develop socially in different ways, it may be possible to increase the probability of better community planning.
This article analyses the geography of urban uprising during the so-called Arab Spring, with a focus on the relationship between its virtual and physical dimensions. To enhance understanding of contemporary social movements, it pays particular attention to the interwoven relationship between the social media that now organise gatherings and communicate political messages, the practices of protest in urban space and the magnifying power of global and national media. Using case studies from Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen, it analyses the spatial and temporal aspects of recent protests and suggests that the reciprocal interaction between social media, urban space and traditional media does not simply reproduce relations between these actors, but also transforms them incrementally.
How can communities enhance social-ecological resilience within complex urban systems? Drawing on a new urbanist proposal in Orange County, California, it is suggested that planning that ignores diverse ways of knowing undermines the experience and shared meaning of those living in a city. The paper then describes how narratives lay at the core of efforts to reintegrate the Los Angeles River into the life of the city and the US Fire Learning Network’s efforts to address the nation’s wildfire crisis. In both cases, participants develop partially shared stories about alternative futures that foster critical learning and facilitate co-ordination without imposing one set of interests on everyone. It is suggested that narratives are a way to express the subjective and symbolic meaning of resilience, enhancing our ability to engage multiple voices and enable self-organising processes to decide what should be made resilient and for whose benefit.
Given the expectation that people will consume more when safety is guaranteed, most cities have, along with the stimulation of nightlife districts, implemented special policies to promote safety. Safe nightlife policies fit in neatly in the larger context of ‘integral’ safety policies where many different actors are expected to collaborate and take responsibility. Very little is known, however, about the interactions between various actors within these new partnerships. This research acknowledges an emerging surveillant ‘assemblage’ in urban nightlife districts where different systems are brought together and practices and technologies are combined and integrated into a larger whole. Interviews with different actors involved in safe nightlife collaborations in Utrecht and Rotterdam (The Netherlands), show how differences in the emergence and set-up of these assemblages, conflicting interests and different power distributions between actors shape collaborations on the ground considerably and result in various local outcomes.
Foucauldian and neo-Gramscian approaches enjoy considerable influence in research on the mutations of neoliberal governance in cities. However, both are prone to treating coercion as the antithesis of power, leading them to downplay the coercive modalities of neoliberalism. This paper applies the Gramscian theory of the integral state to correct the bias towards non-coercive power. The integral state rejects the power–violence dualism, depicting coercive and non-coercive modalities of power and counter-power as inhering in capitalist political economy. The paper argues that studying neoliberalism from the perspective of the integral state contributes to explaining the intractability of coercion in the governance system and in particular the coercive power of the local state. It concludes by reflecting on the implications of this perspective for political action, arguing for a resolutely critical and conflictual stance.
This article analyses fear of crime in the night-time economy as an event that emerges from, and unfolds as part of, the on-going encounters with human and non-human elements in particular places. A conceptual approach to understanding fear of crime is elaborated that highlights the role of ambiguity, meaning that a particular element does not have stable, well-determined effects on fear of crime, and the importance of thinking of fear as the folding of immediate futures and the past into the experienced present. Drawing on empirical research with university students in Utrecht, the Netherlands, the article explores how lighting, policing and the presence of ‘undesired others’ affect fear. Multiple forms of ambiguity are shown to exist, suggesting that interventions in the built environment and zero-tolerance policing tactics are unlikely to reduce fear of crime in the night-time economy as much as past research, influential policy and media discourses have suggested.
In this paper, the peri-urban is conceptualised as a territory to analyse the tensions associated with governments pursuing various agendas in isolation from those inhabiting these spaces. Two peri-urban vignettes are drawn together and Taylor’s conception of a ‘social imaginary’ is used to recognise the conundrum for government planners, as well as to support the narratives about the social and ecological meaning of what local in-migrants are doing in the landscape. A resilience framework assists in clarifying system boundaries and the concept of social-ecological memory is used to interrogate how practices emerge within the various social imaginaries. The findings emphasise that this combination of tropes assists in acknowledging the rich, social imaginaries of local people ‘making’ the new landscapes. It is argued that acknowledging and incorporating their interests requires engaging with local networks and, more strategically, conceding that the social imaginaries of the peri-urban can be co-constructed for other strategic landscape outcomes.
Despite important moves towards gender equality, the experience of the night-time city remains profoundly different for women and men. The visibility of self-styled ‘gentleman’s clubs’ where female dancers perform for a predominantly male clientele has been taken as prime evidence of this persistent inequity. Opposition to such clubs has hence been vocal, with the result that many local authorities in England and Wales have moved to ban clubs within their jurisdiction utilising the powers of the Policing and Crime Act, 2009. This paper explores the arguments that have persuaded policy-makers to refuse licences for such venues, particularly the idea that sexual entertainment causes specific harms to women. The paper does not question the veracity of such arguments, but instead explores why sexual entertainment venues have become a target of feminist campaigning, situating this opposition in the context of long-standing debates about the vulnerability of women in the night-time city.
The development of the ‘night-time economy’ in the UK through the 1990s has been associated with neoliberal urban governance. Academics have, however, begun to question the use and the scope of the concept of ‘neoliberalism’. This paper identifies two common approaches to studying neoliberalism, one exploring neoliberalism as a series of policy networks, the other exploring neoliberalism as the governance of subjectivities. It is argued that to understand the urban night, we need to explore both these senses of ‘neoliberalism’. As a case study, the paper takes the ‘Alive After Five’ project, organised by the Business Improvement District in Newcastle upon Tyne, which sought to extend shopping hours in order to encourage more people to use the city at night. Drawing from actor–network theory, the planning, the translation and the practice of this new project are explored together with the on-going nature and influence of neoliberal policy on the urban night in the UK.
Given geography’s neglect of illuminated and dark space, this paper explores the various qualities of darkness that have contributed to the experience of the city. In recent history, darkness has been conceptualised negatively, for instance, with the ‘dark side’ and the ‘forces of darkness’ conceived as the opposite of that which enlightens and illuminates. Perhaps such metaphors testify to earlier urban conditions in which perils of all sorts lurked in the nocturnal city and doors were closed when darkness fell. Yet modern illumination has transformed nocturnal urban experience, producing cityscapes of regulation, hierarchical selectiveness, consumption, fantasy and imagination. However, this article suggests that the more positive qualities of darkness have been overlooked: the potential for conviviality and intimacy to be fostered in the dark, the aesthetics and atmospherics of darkness and shadow, the possibilities for apprehending the world through other senses and the dismissal of the star-saturated sky.
This paper offers an engagement with theoretical deficits in some uses of neoliberalism as an explanatory concept. It draws on theories of ideology, of governmentality and of assemblage to offer alternative conceptions of the relationship between neoliberalism and its others, and to illuminate the ambiguous and contradictory role of local governments in the UK in processes of neoliberalisation. The paper develops an analysis of local governments as strategic actors in the ‘landscapes of antagonism’ generated by current cycles of economic, political and governance change, and argues for more attention to be paid to the relationship between theory, politics and critique.
The struggles to define and implement an inclusive non-racial urbanism in South Africa after democratisation in 1994 occurred during the heyday of world-wide diffusion of unevenly developed neoliberalisation processes. This case study of the complexities of transforming Cape Town’s energy sector analyses the consequences of these contradictory trajectories by tracking the dynamics of four urbanism typologies: inclusive, splintered, green and slum urbanism. It is argued that, while the imperatives of deracialisation reinforced inclusive trends, neoliberalisation processes reinforced splintered urbanism and its consequences, namely slum urbanism. These dynamics were then overdetermined by environmental changes that have introduced green urbanism as a new arena of contestation.
This paper adapts the concept of heterotopia to understand youth transitions through spaces of night-time cultural infrastructure. While youth transitions in the urban night have been well theorised, what these transitions mean for diverse cultural infrastructure provision has received less attention. Drawing on ethnography of a local punk music scene in the Australian city of Wollongong, the paper analyses how the scene was connected to one specific venue, an alternative ‘haven’ in a monopolised night-time economy. Participants revealed a trend of repetitive yet relatively fleeting association with the local scene and venue, at times a site of hedonism and celebration but also enabling grief and rites-of-passage. Temporal elements of heterotopia are developed to interpret the venue’s valued sense of ‘difference’ during active participation, but also long after association with the space. Such transitions are poorly understood, especially in planning and policy debate, influencing the way night-time cultural infrastructure is provisioned.
This paper frames the debate on ‘binge’ drinking amongst young people within the perspectives of materialism and cultural geography. Drawing on the concept of social practice as interpreted through the perspective of urban design, the research investigated spatial variations in youth drinking using a case study approach to examine two urban areas in England. The study confirmed that the social practice of the ‘big night out’ has become an established feature of youth drinking. The research found the practice constituted in specialist ‘clusters’ of venues and it is argued that place-based characteristics form a significant component of its production and experience. The paper concludes with a reflection on the challenges the evidence poses to previous interpretations of leisure divisions within mainstream nightlife and to the theorisation of place-based differences in drinking milieux oriented towards young people. The implications for public policies are considered.
City-regions are widely recognised as key to economic and social revitalisation. Hardly surprising then is how policy elites have sought to position their own city-regions strategically within international circuits of capital accumulation. Typically this geopolitics of city-regionalism has been seen to represent a new governmentalised remapping of state space conforming to the prevailing orthodoxy of neoliberal state spatial restructuring. Through a case study of the Atlantic Gateway Strategy, this paper provides a lens on to an alternative vision for city-region development. The brainchild of a private investment group, Peel Holdings, the Atlantic Gateway is important because it points towards the production of new non-state spatial strategies. Examining Peel’s motives for invoking the city-region concept, the paper goes on to explore the tensions which currently surround the strategy to further identify the potential and scope for non-state spatial strategies. Connecting this to emerging debates around the key role of asset ownership and the privatisation of local democracy and the democratic state, the paper concludes by suggesting that the key question arising is can and will the state maintain its degree of governmental control over capital investment in major urban regions in an era where persistent underprovision of investment in urban economic infrastructure behoves institutions of the state to become ever more reliant on private investment groups to deliver the deliver the jobs, growth and regeneration of the future.
Striking disparities characterise the population growth of cities in industrialised countries. Some cities suffer from ongoing population decline, whereas other cities have experienced increasing numbers of inhabitants in recent years. Whether labour market conditions or amenities via their impact on migration primarily account for differences in cities’ demographic development is an important issue. This paper investigates the determinants of the migration balance of German cities between 2000 and 2007. The focus is on the mobility of workers because labour migration in particular affects the future prospects of cities. The findings suggest that not only labour market conditions but also amenities have an impact on the net migration rate. Moreover, large cities seem to be, ceteris paribus, more attractive than small cities. This finding possibly points to the importance of amenities such as cultural infrastructure and matching externalities in urban (labour) markets that are linked to city size. Urban policy aimed at enhancing the attractiveness of cities should thus consider both boosting the local economy and improving the quality of life.
This paper analyses the skill and age structure of commuters in 14 EU countries. Theory implies that commuters can be either more or less able than stayers, but are always less able and older than migrants. Empirically, all types of commuters are younger and have higher education than region stayers, but older and less educated than migrants. Internal commuters are better educated and younger than cross-border commuters, education decreases while age increases with distance commuted and recent migrants are younger but also more highly educated than commuters.
This methodological paper shows that using different local job accessibility models (LJAs) leads to significantly different empirical appreciations of job accessibility. Matching several exhaustive micro data sources on the Paris region municipalities, the paper benchmarks a representative set of LJA measurement models used in the recent literature and an original model where job availability is fully estimated according to a set of individual characteristics, job competition is fully modelled on the local labour market and frontier effects are controlled for. We show that the model-induced empirical differences are spatially differentiated across the Paris region municipalities, and that failing to fully estimate job availability may lead to overestimation of the job accessibility levels of underprivileged municipalities.
This paper offers an exploratory investigation of the effects of inbound commuter flows on employment in regional labour markets in Germany. For this purpose, the paper distinguishes three main channels that may transmit the effects concerned: a crowding-out mechanism and two labour demand effects—namely, an aggregate demand effect and a positive externality on vacancy creation. The results bring to light that, on the whole, commuter flows have a positive and robust effect on both employment and the number of jobs in the receiving labour market districts, but a distinctly negative effect on the share of jobs filled by resident workers. The implications of the results are interpreted and, finally, ways are suggested in which the analysis could be improved and expanded.
This paper focuses on the social implications of long-distance commuting on commuters and their spouses in Sweden. In a nation-wide study, the extent to which long-distance commuting increases the odds that couples will separate is investigated through event history analysis. Discrete-time logistic regression models were employed with longitudinal data on Swedish couples in 2000 to explore the odds of separation following long-distance commuting during 1995 to 2005. As expected, the results show that separation rates are higher among long-distance commuting couples compared with non-commuting couples. More complex results show that for men the odds of separating are highest if the commuting is on a temporary basis, and that women’s odds decrease when they continue commuting for a longer time-period. The long-distance commuting effect on relationships also varies depending on residential context.
The purpose of this paper is to study the hierarchical structure of the Canadian urban system and to determine the growth processes. Zipf’s law is rejected for the whole country for all periods because of a clear size-domination by a few big cities such as Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. It appears that the dynamics of growth follow a deterministic process related to existing urban size, previous growth and spatial structure. Splitting the Canadian urban system into two—east and west—permits the identification of differences that were not observable when studying the country as a whole. While size and previous growth are still important explanatory variables of growth patterns, these two systems may be distinguished one from the other from the point of view of spatial patterns of distribution of growth rates.
The paper reflects on how ESDP (European Spatial Development Perspective) principles can be applied in territories with weak population patterns in quantitative terms. The ESDP defines a functional urban area (FUA) as the influence area of a city and sets a minimum threshold of 15,000 inhabitants for the city and 40,000 for the entire FUA. These thresholds are taken as guidelines to explore the concept of functional regions, adding more information from several sources. Hence the paper starts under the normative background given by EU spatial policy and proposes a methodology of analysis combining several techniques, including an application for the Castilla–La Mancha autonomous region (ES42 in NUTS 2). The approaches used in the method proposed include data from mobility, commuting, accessibility and qualitative analyses of services. The outcome shows how ESDP principles could be applied in practice in places with low-density settlement.
Potentially, community development finance institutions (CDFIs) represent a promising complement to the welfare system in its attempts to reduce poverty, since they provide finance to the financially excluded and potentially remove a barrier to their acquisition of assets. Drawing on a new survey of around 360 households in four UK cities, surveyed both before and after the 2008/09 recession, it is found that a major factor determining whether low-income households receiving CDFI loans are able to exit from poverty is their ability to save. This is found to be determined by a variety of attitudinal and institutional factors, including the ‘rationality’ of their coping strategies, the nature and extent of social networks and the extent of their access to money advice. It is argued that some of these causal factors are amenable to policy.
To date, neighbourhood studies on ethnic diversity and social trust have revealed inconclusive findings. In this paper, three innovations are proposed in order to systemise the knowledge about neighbourhood ethnic diversity and the development of social trust. First, it is proposed to use a valid trust measure that is sensitive to the local neighbourhood context. Second, the paper argues for a conception of organically evolved neighbourhoods, rather than using local administrative units as readily available proxies for neighbourhood divisions. Thirdly, referring to intergroup contact theory and group-specific effects of diversity, the paper challenges the notion that ethnic diversity has overwhelmingly negative effects on social trust.
Public transit improvements could cause more clustered and higher-density employment and enable urban growth, giving rise to agglomeration economies by improving labour market accessibility, increasing information exchange and facilitating industrial specialisation. Using data on US metropolitan areas, this paper traces the links from transit service to central city employment density, urbanised area employment density and population; and from these physical agglomeration measures to average wages and per capita GMP. Significant indirect productivity effects of transit service are found. For example, in the case of central city employment density, estimated wage increases range between $1.5 million and $1.8 billion per metropolitan area yearly for a 10 per cent increase in transit seats or rail service miles per capita. Firms and households likely receive unanticipated agglomeration benefits from transit-induced densification and growth, and current benefit–cost evaluations may therefore underestimate the benefits of improving transit service, particularly in large cities with existing transit networks.
This article hypothesises that, due to factors such as thin trading and lack of publicly available data on transactions in the land market, urban land prices react more sluggishly to shocks in market fundamentals than housing prices do. Based on a vector error-correction model utilising quarterly data for the Helsinki Metropolitan Area in Finland over 1988Q1–2008Q2, the empirical analysis provides support for this hypothesis. In particular, the results suggest that new information regarding the market fundamentals is more rapidly reflected in housing prices than in land prices. Nevertheless, it is the housing price level, instead of land prices, that adjusts towards a cointegrating long-run equilibrium between housing prices, land prices and construction costs.
This paper tests the common belief that subsidised housing contributes to higher crime rates. To do this, panel data on over 200 US cities are used and fixed effects models are estimated to control for unobserved differences between cities that may affect both voucher use and crime. Additionally, models are estimated that focus on the suburbs, to see if the steady increase in vouchers there has had any effect on crime. In cities, it is found that vouchers have a weak, negative relationship with violent crime rates, although these estimates are not particularly robust. In suburban areas, there is no observed relationship between vouchers and crime, suggesting that controversies in those communities blaming voucher households for elevated crime rates are misguided.
Despite an emerging literature on guerrilla gardening as a political practice in public spaces, with few exceptions, these accounts theorise it as working against many corporate and bureaucratic forms of power. Using the example of ‘F Troop’—a group of gardeners operating on a site in an English midland city—this paper focuses on the practices of urban guerrilla gardening in order to illustrate that these are perhaps not as ‘resistant’ or ‘celebratory’ as previous accounts have suggested. Rather, this paper draws on ethnographic data to focus attention on the micro politics of garden activism, arguing that the social backgrounds and motivations of those involved in guerrilla gardening and their relationship with other users of the space surrounding the dig site are also important—but largely underacknowledged—aspects of guerrilla gardening.
This article examines the relationship between ethnic diversity in the neighbourhood and attachment to it, while addressing the role of interethnic relations—both within and beyond the neighbourhood—and differentiating between native and migrant residents. The analyses rely on data from an international research project conducted in 2009/10 among residents of ethnically diverse areas in six European cities: Bilbao, Lisbon, Rotterdam, Thessalonica, Vienna and Warsaw. The obtained results confirm earlier findings as regards the general negative association between ethnic diversity and neighbourhood attachment, but more importantly, reveal that having interethnic relations moderates this relationship differently for natives and migrants. Ethnic diversity does not erode neighbourhood attachment for natives who have ties with people of other ethnicities, or for migrants with mono-ethnic ties. This pattern is explained by the different meaning that a diverse setting has for natives and for migrants. Possible implications of these findings are also discussed.
Research has documented that immigrants have moved in large numbers to almost every metropolitan area and select rural areas in the US. In the midst of these demographic shifts, the country has experienced a profound recession. To date, there has been little research on the impact of the recession on immigrants across the US. Using 2006 and 2009 American Community Survey microdata, the paper assesses how the recent economic crisis has affected Latino and Asian immigrants with respect to two housing outcomes (homeownership and headship) over two important time points in the recent economic cycle. Immigrants have worse housing outcomes and significantly lower mobility rates after the recession. Regression results suggest that the negative impacts from the recession are strongest in the gateway metropolitan areas and that, after controlling for residence in the hardest-hit areas, increases in metropolitan-level unemployment and mortgage delinquency rates have a negative impact on homeownership rates. The results also suggest that, even though the recession has disrupted immigrants' upward trajectory in the housing markets, the effect has not been as severe on immigrants as one might expect. In particular, the places where immigrant populations are newest have not experienced as large a reduction in homeownership as those in the large immigrant gateways. Even in the established gateways, the decline in homeownership has been smaller for immigrants than for US-born households.
This article investigates consequences of spatial contexts on interethnic contact. Despite the acknowledged integrative effects of pleasant interethnic relationships, several unresolved issues remain in this research field: investigations at two contextual levels simultaneously—i.e. neighbourhood and municipality levels; investigations of several contextual characteristics simultaneously, e.g. ethnic concentration, physical contact opportunities, population size; investigations on different kinds of interethnic contact, for example, contact with neighbours, with friends or in general. The present study contributes to these issues by analysing interethnic contact from a native’s perspective using a German nation-wide dataset. A considerably high proportion of Germans (72 per cent) have contact with foreigners in at least one out of four measured types. Ethnic concentration is the strongest contextual predictor for all kinds of interethnic contact. Physical contact opportunities in the immediate neighbourhood foster interethnic contact in the neighbourhood only, while municipality size mostly diminishes interethnic contact.
New Urbanism and traditional neighbourhood development (TND) have been championed as solutions to the problems associated with post-war suburban sprawl. However, they have yet to capture a substantial share of the US housing market. The market context for TND is not well understood as the paucity of TND makes it difficult to study directly. This paper takes a novel approach by focusing on the market for ‘traditional’ development itself, defined as subdivisions recorded prior to World War II, in the sprawling Tucson, Arizona, MSA. The results of the hedonic analysis demonstrate that home buyers value the features embodied in traditional development, as homes in subdivisions platted before 1940 command premiums over those in their modern counterparts, even after carefully controlling for locational and structural characteristics. Moreover, the analysis finds that the premiums have increased through time, which suggests growing demand for traditionally designed subdivisions.
This paper utilises two politically determined natural experiments affecting state-provided social housing to examine the impact that housing tenure status has on neighbourhood outcomes. From 1990, New Zealand’s National government sold a substantial number of state houses either to existing tenants (Home Buys) or to other purchasers (vacant sales). From 1999, the Labour government ended Home Buys, reduced vacant sales and increased acquisitions. While vacant sales had no material effects on local outcomes, a higher prevalence of Home Buys led to increased local house price appreciation despite demographic trends that would otherwise have led to falling relative house prices in those communities.
This paper examines the influence of public greenspace on the life satisfaction of residents of Australia’s capital cities. A positive relationship is found between the percentage of public greenspace in a resident’s local area and their self-reported life satisfaction, on average corresponding to an implicit willingness-to-pay of $1172 in annual household income for a 1 per cent (143 square metres) increase in public greenspace. Additional results suggest that the value of greenspace increases with population density and that lone parents and the less educated benefit to a greater extent from the provision of public greenspace than the general population. In all, these results support existing evidence that public greenspace is welfare enhancing for urban residents and adequate allowance should be made for its provision when planning urban areas.
Urban ecological politics is shaped by both moments of concerted action and more silent perceptions and responses. Instead of only being evident in situations of organised protest, the politics of urban ecology is also manifested, in material and symbolic terms, in the daily life of the residents. The fragmentation of urban political ecology turns out to be an important element in the affirmation of post-political forms of urban governance. Those issues were the object of fieldwork research carried out in Greengairs and Ravenscraig, two towns in North Lanarkshire, near Glasgow, with the goal of unravelling the understanding and the coping mechanisms of environmentally deprived residents. The towns are permeated by a widespread, often dissimulated, political ecology that is nonetheless always present. Empirical results demonstrate that a more comprehensive handling of the political ecology of the urban is crucial in order to halt the sources of marginalisation and ecological degradation.
This paper conceptualises post-socialist urban economic geographies through the notion of hybrid spatialities that emerge from the mutual embeddedness of neoliberalism and socialist legacies. While the dismantling of state socialism was a massive moment towards the exacerbation of uneven development, ironically it is the socialist-era spatial legacy that has become the single major differentiating factor for the economic status of cities. This superficial overdetermination, however, masks the root causes of uneven development that must be seen in the logic of capitalism and its attendant practices which subsume legacy, recode its meaning, and recast the formerly equalitarian spaces as an uneven spatial order. The authors argue that the socialist legacy, rather than being an independent carrier of history, has been alienated from its history to become an infrastructure of neoliberalisation, conducive to capitalist process. The paper draws specifically on the experiences of Russia, although its reflections should reverberate much more broadly.
This article applies the global-relational conceptual frame developed in recent work on urban policy mobilities to heritage, a seemingly local policy area, in Hong Kong. In response to growing public criticism and protests in the past decade, the Hong Kong government launched a review of its heritage policy and the related institutional framework. This was largely an ‘extrospective’ process involving comparison and learning from other places. The article reviews this exercise, using as a case study a tertiary education programme that is a key node of heritage policy learning. The article shows that innovation must respond to the territorial specificities of land administration, culture and politics, and thus must be assembled locally—albeit in correspondence with globally circulating models and practices. Conceptually, the article proposes the need to understand the local politics of urban heritage from a relational perspective, attentive to both collective claims and interests and neoliberal governance.
This paper fosters dialogue between neoliberal urbanism and post-colonial research, drawing attention to city-regional formation in the global South. It critiques the Manaus Metropolitan Region (RMM) initiative as a state-space remapping guided by ecological entrepreneurialism. In 2007, Amazonas state created the framework to spearhead growth in an extensive territory construed as both urban and pristine. RMM mobilises infrastructure investments and forceful zoning to reconcile the expansion of tax-exempted manufacturing, with exclusive ‘global city’ redevelopment, and heightened conservation measures seeking to leverage both the symbolic value of peri-urban rainforests and their potential to generate carbon-credit revenues. Focusing on the Manaus–Iranduba Bridge and its socio-spatial impacts, the paper problematises visions of sustainable urbanisation that circulate transnationally and exacerbate territorialised patterns of geographically uneven development. Hence, top–down global city-regional construction spearheads political reactions, social mobilisation and territorial conflicts of complex resolution and important implications for translocal activism and coalition building.
This paper aims to contribute to existing literature on the effects of the built environment on bicycle commuting, examining the case of Beijing. A group of city-wide random samples is analysed. The analysis shows that bicycle commuting is significantly associated with some features of the built environment when many demographic and socioeconomic factors are taken into account. Higher destination accessibility, a higher number of exclusive bicycle lanes, a mixed environment and greater connectivity between local streets tend to increase the use of the bicycle. These effects differ across gender, age and income groups. However, residential density has no significant effects on the use of a bicycle for commuting, while higher levels of public transit services tends to decrease rather than increase bicycle commuting. The results imply that the drastic changes in the built environment are a major reason for the demise of ‘the kingdom of bicycles’ in China.
Ethnic residential segregation can arise from voluntary or imposed clustering of some ethnicities in specific urban areas. However, up to now it has been difficult to untangle the real causes underlying the segregation phenomena. In particular, voluntary segregation preferences could not be revealed from the observed location choices given the existence of constraints in the real housing market. This study aims at analysing the voluntary segregation drivers through a stated preferences experiment of neighbourhood choice. This method obviates the choice-constraint issue by allowing a hypothetically free choice of alternative urban locations. The results suggest that ethnic preferences exist, positive for co-national neighbours and negative for other foreign groups. However, such preferences do not constitute a major location choice driver given relatively modest willingness-to-pay for ethnic neighbourhood characteristics. Certain heterogeneity in preferences for higher concentration of own co-nationals is captured for households of different origins and educational attainment.
Scholars have recently advocated going beyond a fetishism for one spatiality to consider a diversity of socio-spatial relations in the study of political mobilisation. The objective of this article is to propose an operationalisation of the four spatialities framework (networks, scale, place and territory) and use it in an investigation of the mobilisation for car alternatives in the Montreal city-region. The approach is to start with the spatiality and structure of the network, to identify brokers and focus on them for the detailed analysis of scale, territory and place. The article sheds light on the particular assets which the use of each spatiality, and their combination, offers for mobilisation in the city-regional context. The findings also illustrate how city-regionalism is experienced by civic actors building coalitions to defend specific causes.
Defining city-region boundaries for governance or policy requires robust data analysis reflecting a conceptualisation of city-regions. Geddes introduced the concept to England and both fundamental and contingent features he identified remain valid. Subsequent work has not clarified issues raised by the contingent features and one of these—whether or not cities dominate the region definitions—here structures the review of city-region definition methods. Following a historical review of the failure of proposals for English city-region governance geography—which ascribes a key role in those failures to institutional inertia fuelled by rural interests—a review of the ‘city-centric’ methods which exacerbate rural opposition shows they fail to meet essential requirements. By contrast a ‘regions first’ approach to city-region definition is shown capable of implementing all the fundamental features of the concept, including the analysis of flows over and above those of commuting.
The rise of the city-region concept has focused attention on the nature of territorial politics underpinning city-regionalism. This paper investigates the relationship between territorial politics, city-regionalism and the collective provision of mass transport infrastructure in the USA. It deploys a case study of the Denver region, examining the state and governance structures driving forward FasTracks, a long-term project to expand the Denver Regional Transportation District’s light and commuter rail system. FasTracks represents a programme to retrofit the Denver city-region for integrated mass transit but its funding has fostered tensions around new regionalist governance arrangements. The paper uses the findings of the case study to reflect upon the balance of bottom–up versus top–down geopolitical forces shaping the landscape of city-regionalism in the USA. It emphasises the variety of ways in which struggles around infrastructure provision shape the emergence of new city-regionalist structures inside the competition state.
The business connections between Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai and other major world cities are investigated using the interlocking network model based upon the location strategies of advanced producer service firms. This approach emphasises non-hierarchical relations between cities. A key new finding is that city-dyad analysis enhances the prominence of these China cities compared with simple ranking by total global network connectivity. This suggests that Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing have developed more strategically important roles in the world city network than previously understood. Yet the geographies of these links are distinctive, with Shanghai shown to be better connected to the more important world cities such as London and New York than Beijing; and Beijing is found to be better connected to political world cities such as Washington and Brussels, and to other Pacific Asian cities, than Shanghai. The results are interpreted as suggestions for developing a new research programme.
Much research has been done on the causes of metropolitan consolidation and its rarity. However, the causes of metropolitan fragmentation are rarely considered. Without considering the reasons for fragmentation, it is difficult to make wise decisions, especially when state policies granting power to local governments cause fragmentation. This article proposes that city formation follows a niche model, much like the formation of interest groups, and that the factors governing interest group origination also affect city formation. To form, cities need residents, resources and entrepreneurs to come together such that a new city can be affordably created. It tests this theory against data from the US Census of Governments and other sources, and finds that Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA’s) fragment differently from non-MSA counties, state grants of local power increase fragmentation, and more resources allow for more fragmentation. It concludes with a discussion of the results and how they should influence urban policy.
Most studies on neighbourhood change attribute a key role to mobility in social upgrading and downgrading patterns, while incumbent processes—i.e. changes in the socioeconomic status of non-migrants—are often ignored. This paper explores the relationship between mobility and neighbourhood change by examining income developments of in-migrants, out-migrants and non-migrants of neighbourhoods in three Dutch cities. The paper demonstrates that in- and out-migration are not the only processes at work and that changes in the socioeconomic status of non-migrants are of importance too. Within upgrading neighbourhoods, incumbent processes of non-migrants seem to be an important driver of upgrading. Furthermore, although in-migrants have relatively low incomes when moving in, they experience strong income gains in the years after in-migrating. The contribution of out-migrants to upgrading is mixed. In line with previous studies, migration reinforces downgrading processes, although at the same time, incumbent processes of non-migrants impede downgrading.
The paper analyses the concept of the smart city in critical perspective, focusing on the power/knowledge implications for the contemporary city. On the one hand, smart city policies support new ways of imagining, organising and managing the city and its flows; on the other, they impress a new moral order on the city by introducing specific technical parameters in order to distinguish between the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ city. The smart city discourse may therefore be a powerful tool for the production of docile subjects and mechanisms of political legitimisation. The paper is largely based on theoretical reflections and uses smart city politics in Italy as a case study. The paper analyses how the smart city discourse proposed by the European Union has been reclassified to produce new visions of the ‘good city’ and the role of private actors and citizens in the management of urban development.
Starting in the 1990s, the Vietnamese state sought to expand and modernise the country’s urban system after four decades of anti-urban policies. This paper examines the reworking of the socialist land regime that followed from this shift. It begins by explaining how new legislation and institutions combined market and socialist principles to lure domestic enterprises into realising the state’s new urban ambitions. It then shows how this hybrid reordering of policy triggered local experiments with periurban land redevelopment and new forms of alliances between the state and private capital. Using the case of the Land-for-Infrastructure mechanism, which uses land as in-kind payment for the building of infrastructure, it is found that this experiment undermines the implementing of official planning orientations and regulations. Finally, the paper explores the relationship between this problematic outcome and the political-economic environment within which recent land policy changes have been implemented in Vietnam.
This article seeks to contribute to a better understanding of the role of the state in influencing the formation of global cities in emerging economies. It highlights the complexity of this role due to challenging external environments, divergent interests of state actors and socioeconomic and institutional constraints that these actors are under. At an empirical level, it examines the progress of Shanghai in its state-led development as an emerging global city and the respective roles of the national and local governments in this process.
Chicago uses tax increment financing (TIF) to promote economic development to a greater extent than any other large American city. This paper conducts a comprehensive assessment of the effectiveness of Chicago’s TIF programme in creating economic opportunities and catalysing real estate investments at the neighbourhood scale. This paper uses a unique panel dataset at the block-group level to analyse the impact of TIF designation and investments on employment change, business creation and building permit activity. After controlling for potential selection bias in TIF assignment, this paper shows that TIF ultimately fails the ‘but-for’ test and shows no evidence of increasing tangible economic development benefits for local residents. Implications for policy are considered.
This paper discusses the contradictions of citizen participation in regeneration. Focusing on the south Wales Valleys, it observes that the creation of the Welsh Assembly in 1999 created a window of opportunity for a radical, bottom–up programme of ‘non-prescriptive’ regeneration, Communities First, which invoked active citizenship to address democratic deficit and economic crisis. Drawing on interview and policy evidence, the analysis shows how the programme became captured by a New Labour policy agenda shifting the priorities from citizen representation to ‘community activation’. This trajectory is interpreted in the light of Jones’ and Ward’s analysis of the ‘crisis of crisis management’, in which the state attempts to offset repeated failures to address economic crisis by a series of political-level ‘fixes’ that in turn create new problems. In the case discussed, these fixes take the form of risk management measures, which the paper discusses using the concepts of the risk society (Beck) and reflexive government (Dean).
Devolution of powers and functions from national to regional level has been a common experience internationally in recent times. A range of possible driving forces underpinning this trend are reviewed. The city-region has become a favoured spatial unit for organising direct regional participation in global markets. New governance structures are being forged for mobilising joint cross-communuty action in pursuit of broad regional objectives. A range of influences can shape the configuration of these structures, giving rise to a varied geography of regional governance arrangements. This paper focuses on the dysfunctional governance structures which have inhibited the implementation of the National Spatial Strategy, introduced by the Irish government in 2002 with the objective of achieving balanced regional development through the creation of a polycentric system of city-regions. These structures are described and their origins attributed to features of the Irish system of government which favour administrative centralisation over devolution.
The development of functional economic areas and their relationship to governance has been attracting considerable attention. New forms of sub-regional governance have emerged that have been interpreted in a variety of ways. Within this context, a different approach to multiscalar governance linked to economic space is emerging at a European level in relation to the implementation of the Lisbon Treaty. This is embedding the principles of subsidiarity/territorial cohesion within member-states, and with sub-state scales of working being promulgated. This paper adds to existing discussions of city-regionalism by providing an alternative—yet fundamental—insight into these reform constructs within England in its relations with the EU. It explores: the role of economic spaces in the genealogy of rescaling tendencies; their co-option of governance as a ‘strategic’ mechanism for growth; and the emergent geo-politics associated with new sub-state governance structures and their effectiveness as intended ‘transitionary’ arrangements.
Global city-regions in least and highly developed countries are said to have homogenised visions in their reorganisation of urban space, but in reality they differ drastically in terms of consequences. This can be demonstrated with special reference to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). Planned integration of the MMR in the early 1990s into the world system has resulted in massive breakdowns in the indigenous space-economy leading to deeper changes in the socioeconomic and politico-cultural structures of the peri-urban areas.
This article concentrates on the connectivity of global pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms in the contemporary ‘world city network’ that constitutes a ‘space of flows’ in which particular urban regions achieve an outstanding nodal centrality. World city network analyses have mostly concentrated on global service providers. Yet globally operating manufacturing firms also select distinct urban regions all across the world as locational anchoring points. Thus the network structures of distinct industrial sub-sectors need to be analysed in order to detect the differing nodal centralities and ‘sectoral profiles’ of cities functioning as geographical hubs of transnational production networks. A macro-scale analysis is presented of how the top 40 global firms in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry connected cities across the world in 2010. Subsequently, the nodal centralities of cities included in this sub-sector’s global network are compared with the findings of previous analyses that concentrate on the advanced producer services sector.
Modelling spatial heterogeneity (SH) is a controversial subject in real estate economics. Single-family-home prices in Austria are explored to investigate the capability of global and locally weighted hedonic models. Even if regional indicators are not fully capable to model SH and technical amendments are required to account for unmodelled SH, the results emphasise their importance to achieve a well-specified model. Due to SH beyond the level of regional indicators, locally weighted regressions are proposed. Mixed geographically weighted regression (MGWR) prevents the limitations of fixed effects by exploring spatially stationary and non-stationary price effects. Besides reducing prediction errors, it is concluded that global model misspecifications arise from improper selected fixed effects. Reported findings provide evidence that the SH of implicit prices is more complex than can be modelled by regional indicators or purely local models. The existence of both stationary and non-stationary effects implies that the Austrian housing market is economically connected.
Between 1930 and 2010 the share of single-person, or solo, households in the US increased from 6 per cent to almost 28 per cent, whereas the share of married-couple households decreased from 79 per cent to 49 per cent. Yet solo households have received little attention in urban planning and transport research. Given the significant increase of solo households in US cities, this study identifies the distinctive dwelling, moving and travel characteristics of the American solo households, and examines the reasons for their attraction to cities. It uses historical data from census Public Use Microdata Samples and recent national data from the American Housing Survey and the National Household Travel Survey. Descriptive statistics, basic statistical tests, binary logit models and Heckman sample selection models are used to examine various relationships. Some of the transport-related and environmental implications of the findings are discussed.
Increasing attention has focused on relational spatial entities as potentially embedding renewed and alternative paths of local development. This paper discusses the intertwining of an emerging relational configuration of space and the pursuit of post-industrial development, by analysing the formation of an organisational identity. The case of NewcastleGateshead (UK) is interpreted as a brand emerging from urban collective strategy-making, involving two partner cities, thus crossing administrative borders. By suggesting the importance of the emergence of ‘branded relational spaces’, research results stress the active role of a collective construction of meanings and their communication in the creation of relational spatial entities. This provides an opportunity to reflect on the extent to which branding, here interpreted as collective strategy-making, goes beyond mere communication and fosters an institutionalisation of the branded space, thus influencing the way in which local development is spatially and strategically conceived.
Not all Chinese cities are alike, and these differences are reflected in the challenges posed by urbanisation and the corresponding responses cities undertake, including the formulation of mandated five-year plans. These plans emerge from and contribute to a larger discursive process by which planners and other actors frame an understanding of the key issues that cities need to address. This research undertakes a content analysis of the 11th five-year plans of 286 major cities in China, leading to the identification of a set of key words permeating those texts. A cluster analysis is then conducted based on those key words describing principal tasks outlined in the five-year plans. Seven distinct clusters of cities emerge and an additional analysis using socioeconomic data from the China City Statistical Yearbook identifies the defining characteristics of each cluster and prototypical cities within them (Jilin, Liuzhou, Zhuzhou, Nanping, Xinyu, Chengde and Mianyang). Finally, by comparing the present socioeconomic profile and prospective development issues of each cluster, implications for national urban planning strategies in China are discussed.
Science parks (SPs) have received special attention as a policy tool to facilitate localised economic growth by attracting high-tech firms, especially small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The effectiveness of this strategy has been called into question. Empirical studies suggest that the benefits of SPs for high-tech firms are limited. While this debate is mainly concentrated in the US and Europe, this paper sheds light on the role of SPs in China. It is found that, despite the presence of alternatives, the locations of high-tech SMEs in the region of Shenzhen are determined by hierarchically structured and governed SPs. This finding supports the notion that SPs can play a positive role in attracting high-tech SMEs. Moreover, these effects occur in the relatively unexplored Chinese context of increasingly liberalised but governed market circumstances, where a mature innovation system is still lacking.
Research has shown that the job access of the poor has been declining because of two major reasons: the spatial distribution of employment and housing, and socioeconomic restructuring. This paper aims to untangle the effects of the two factors on poor job seekers’ access to jobs in the Chicago metropolitan area from 1990 to 2010. Using census tracts as the unit of analysis, this research examines the effects of these two factors on the growth and distribution of poor job seekers and their matching jobs, as well as the consequential changes in job demand, supply and job access across the study area. Results show that spatial changes have increased job accessibility for the poor while socioeconomic transformation has adversely affected it.
Compensation paid to property owners for land expropriation is always a controversial topic, partly due to the difficulty in revealing households’ true valuation of their housing. This paper estimates and discusses the widely observed ‘willingness to accept–willingness to pay’ (WTA–WTP) gap for surveyed residents of their own houses during land expropriation. By testing several hypotheses interpreting the WTA–WTP disparity from previous studies, the paper tries to establish the incentive for households’ decision-making. The paper employs a contingent valuation method with data from 315 household interviews in central Beijing, China. The paper reports an average WTA/WTP ratio of 3.74 and reaches the conclusion that in our case the high compensation required by property owners largely derives from opportunistic pricing behaviour rather than sentimental attachment to the dwellings that is unobservable in the market price, and that the WTA of the residents is intentionally overpriced.
There are substantial variations in labour market outcomes between neighbourhoods. One potential partial explanation is that residents of some neighbourhoods face discrimination from employers. Although studies of deprived areas have recorded resident perceptions of discrimination by employers and negative employer perceptions of certain areas, until now there has been no direct evidence on whether employers treat job applicants differently by area of residence. This paper reports a unique experiment to test for a neighbourhood reputation effect involving 2001 applications to 667 real jobs by fictional candidates nominally resident in neighbourhoods with poor and bland reputations. The experiment found no statistically significant difference in employer treatment of applicants from these areas, indicating that people living in neighbourhoods with poor reputations did not face ‘postcode discrimination’ in the labour market, at the initial selection stage.
This study analyses the structure of transit demand in Atlanta’s transit system to understand why different elements of the network appeal to bus and rail riders. By estimating direct demand models of work trip use between pairs of traffic analysis zones, the authors find that self-identified bus riders come from poorer areas having fewer autos per household and seek to reach jobs scattered throughout the metropolitan area. Their demand is highly elastic with respect to travel time. They care not about the presence of transit-oriented development (TOD) attributes at either origins or destinations. Self-identified rail riders primarily access transit by automobile and value fast service to within convenient walking distance of employment, such as in the central business district (CBD) and some but not all TODs. The results suggest that an agency could increase ridership by both groups using a core network of higher speed lines that provide access to decentralised employment centres.
Burglary prevalence within neighbourhoods is well understood but the risk from bordering areas is under-theorised and under-researched. If it were possible to fix a neighbourhood’s location but substitute its surrounding areas, one might expect to see some influence on its crime rate. However, by treating surrounding areas as independent observations, ecological studies assume that identical neighbourhoods with markedly different surroundings are equivalent. If not, knowing the impact of different peripheries would have significance for crime prevention, land use planning and other policy domains. This paper tests whether knowledge of the demographic make-up of surrounding areas can improve on the prediction of a neighbourhood’s burglary rate based solely on its internal socio-demographics. Results identify significant between-area effects with certain types of periphery exerting stronger influences than others. The advantages and drawbacks of the spatial error and predictor lag model used in the analysis are discussed and areas for further research defined.
The aim of this work is to test empirically the validity of Gibrat’s law on the growth of cities, using data on the complete distribution of cities (without size restrictions) from three countries (the US, Spain and Italy) for the entire 20th century. In order to achieve this, different techniques are used. First, panel data unit root tests tend to confirm the validity of Gibrat’s law in the upper-tail distribution. Secondly, when the entire distribution is considered using non-parametric methods, it is found that Gibrat’s law does not hold exactly in the long term (in general, size affects the variance of the growth process but not its mean). Moreover, the log-normal distribution works well as a description of city size distributions across the whole century when no truncation point is considered.
Promoting physical activity among youth is an important public health objective. Initiatives in urban settings targeting different types of physical activity like cycling are important. This study sought to examine qualitatively urban youths’ experiences in and perceptions of a community cycling initiative (Earn-A-Bike) delivered in Philadelphia, PA, by a local non-profit, Neighborhood Bike Works (NBW). Focus groups were conducted to understand the impact of this programme and to inform future community-based initiatives targeting urban youth. Five themes were derived from the qualitative analysis, comprising benefits of cycling, barriers to cycling, cycling knowledge, support from family and friends, and self efficacy. Earn-A-Bike was well accepted by urban youth, who reported positive perceptions and intentions to continue cycling after the conclusion of the programme. NBW is an example of how local non-profits can integrate into urban communities, creating a positive impact on urban children’s lives from a health, cultural and educational perspective.
Shared appreciation mortgages (SAMs) realign traditional incentives in the lender–borrower relationship by substituting future capital gains for interest income. This makes them a potentially innovative solution to affordability and other homeownership crises. Taxation and regulatory barriers have impeded SAM development limiting empirical studies of their impact on households. This has not been the case in South Australia where State government implementation of SAMs has made available a unique and detailed dataset of low-income SAM-financed households. Examining this population, it is found that SAM borrowers benefit from increased budgetary expenditure on discretionary items following take-up, while simultaneously saving on some non-discretionary items relative to a control sample. Furthermore, SAM homeownership also seems associated with increased borrower levels of neighbourhood satisfaction and community involvement. Overall, these results indicate that SAM-financed homeownership leads to changes in borrower behaviour and deserves further consideration by the housing industry and research community.
This study examines how the relationship between active travel (AT) and the built environment is influenced by the modifiable areal unit problem (MAUP). Characteristics of the built environment are measured at 14 geographical scales. At each scale, these characteristics are related to a binary measure of AT using a logit model. The data for this study come from the Space–Time Activity Research (STAR) project, which was conducted in Halifax, Canada, between April 2007 and May 2008. The variable coefficients and their significance are examined for MAUP influences. The results suggest that the relationship between AT and the built environment is indeed impacted by the MAUP. The results are used to suggest guidelines for selecting an appropriate scale at which to measure the built environment in order to minimise MAUP effects.
This paper examines the association between housing tenure mix and health outcomes for urban residents. The analysis used Cox’s proportional hazard regression modelling with a range of health measures from two waves of the Scottish Health Survey plus linked hospital morbidity records for the survey respondents. There was no consistent pattern in health outcomes according to housing tenure mix. For specific health issues, particular types of neighbourhood had significantly different (worse) outcomes: areas with a sizeable social renting sector for self-reported health; areas with a sizeable social- or private-renting sector for accidents; and areas dominated by social renting for alcohol-related illnesses. There are indications that adjustments to the tenure mix of social housing areas might lead to improvements in some health outcomes: improved mental health and reduced smoking, via a reduction in area deprivation; and reduced alcohol-related illnesses due to possible effects of tenure mix on material context and culture.
West End is an inner-city neighbourhood in Brisbane, Australia, about to experience profound change. In the next two decades the population of West End is planned to increase fourfold as the result of local and state government urban consolidation policies, with little planning for services and amenity to cater for this increase. Interviews with 50 residents of West End are used to describe the nature and qualities of a strong existing public realm in West End, intimately tied to place and closely associated with West End’s early gentrification status. It is argued that early gentrification, because of the change it brings, has been consistent with the maintenance and protection of this public realm. As West End is the last neighbourhood of its type in the city (and one of the last in the country), it is also argued that in the absence of any state-led policies to foster diversity, for the benefit of the wider metropolis, these neighbourhoods are worth protecting from the parochialising effects of insensitive developer-led ‘second-wave’ gentrification.
This paper explores whether the population size of the Seoul Metropolitan Area (SMA) in Korea is efficient in terms of the national economy. To undertake this analysis, a recursively dynamic interregional computable general equilibrium (ICGE) model with a population module is developed. In this model, the explicit costs and benefits of population growth are estimated by using the industrial value added and consumer price inflation functions for each region. The counter-factual analysis shows that national population decentralisation away from the SMA is desirable for Korea’s economic growth. Korea’s GDP is estimated to be maximised when the SMA’s national population share is at 39 per cent in the short term and 35 per cent in the long term. However, the SMA government is likely to have incentive to maintain its population at around 40 per cent of the national population, where per capita income at the regional, not national, level is maximised.
This paper explores different explanations for the continuing presence of a large share of middle-class households in disadvantaged neighbourhoods in the Netherlands, a seeming anomaly to middle-class residential practices of disaffiliation and elective belonging identified in the research literature. In-depth interviews with middle-class residents in urban restructuring neighbourhoods in Amsterdam and The Hague provide insight into the way in which these residents make sense of and engage with their residential surroundings. The study found that respondents downplay neighbourhood problems and validate living in an urban restructuring area through a value-for-money discourse. At the same time, they display subtle ways of disaffiliating from the neighbourhood through both discursive and socio-spatial practices in everyday life.
Mobility is often overlooked in debates about spatial disadvantage, which tend to focus on place. In this paper, the focus is on residential mobility and the ways in which it derives from, and contributes to, processes of social disadvantage. Building on David Clapham’s concept of ‘housing pathways’, mobility-based disadvantage is analysed with a focus on questions of housing quality, control over residential moves and accumulation of economic, social and cultural capital through such moves. These themes are considered in an empirical study of the housing pathways of sixty low-income households in Australia, through which four typical patterns are identified as ‘mobilities of disadvantage’: hectic private rental pathways; pathways of homelessness; pathways out of homeownership; and, repeat moves in and out of social housing. These pathways represent one neglected aspect of the ‘unfair structure’ of the Australian city, as a network of pathways rather than a mosaic of places.
This paper aims to explore the spatial and organisational dynamics of innovation activities in the evolution of cultural industry using Taipei’s music industry as a case study. The existing literature has emphasised that innovation and creativity are driving the evolution of the cultural industry as a result of the spatial proximity effect generated by production systems. However, few studies have examined the innovation practices of the cultural industry resulting from interactive relationships between the urban cluster environment and the mobilisation process of project networks. An evolutionary perspective is used to illustrate how the cluster and network elements of the music industry are intertwined in innovation practices within the Taipei context. As a contribution to the cluster–network debates, this paper argues that the innovation dynamics of Taipei’s music industry are a hybrid feature of Taipei’s cluster environment and the strategic competencies of music project networks rather than the local cluster effect. In conclusion, a different trajectory for the evolution of Taipei’s music industry is presented. Additionally, this dynamic process between cluster and network makes Taipei a hybrid creative platform that is an active element in the cultivation of the innovative competencies of Taipei’s music producers and related workers.
Many commentators suggest that access to public spaces is threatened by privatisation and commercialisation. In this paper, these processes are linked to the festivalisation of cities. Staging temporary festivals in public spaces can animate and promote cities. However, staging events restricts access for some user groups and ‘once in a lifetime’ events may act as precedents—providing justification for further exploitation. This paper explores the use of public parks for events. The paper focuses on Greenwich Park: the equestrian venue during the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Observation work and discourse analysis were undertaken to explore this controversial case. The paper analyses the discourses deployed by those seeking to justify and resist the use of the Park as an Olympic venue. Advocates claimed Games organisers were merely borrowing the park to share it with the world. Ultimately, the research highlights the importance and difficulties of regulating high-profile event projects.
The concept of assemblages has gained an important degree of momentum in urban studies claiming to offer a new ontology for understanding cities as emergent and fluid concatenations of multiple elements. Such a conception, however, has also been criticised in relation to its supposed failure to deal effectively with the issue of power and inequality in urban dynamics. This paper contributes to this on-going discussion by exploring in detail the way in which power was embedded in one particular case: a bus stop shelter located in front of the Biblioteca Nacional in Santiago, Chile. In so doing, it analyses the controversy arising when two large and complex urban assemblages share component/s that each of them claims as exclusive. This situation made necessary practices of co-ordination in which a hierarchy was established between the competing assemblages, involving important transformations in some of its components.
This paper aims to stimulate interest in the early micro-economic conceptualisation of housing submarkets proposed by Rapkin and Grigsby, which defined market areas in terms of dwelling substitutability. Three key questions need to be addressed if a return to the Rapkin–Grigsby approach is to be achievable and worthwhile. First, what are the practical benefits? (The paper highlights a range of potential research applications that would benefit from the substitutability approach.) Secondly, in what way are existing approaches likely to be inadequate for demarcating substitutability-based submarkets? (Four criteria are proposed for assessing submarket estimation methods which existing approaches fail to satisfy.) Thirdly, what are the prospects for developing a substitutability metric that will make the Rapkin–Grigsby definition empirically feasible? (A new measure is proposed, based on the cross-price elasticity of price (CPEP), which is illustrated using data for Glasgow, Scotland.)
This paper begins by exploring the unique place of Gulu Town within the 20-year civil war in northern Uganda (1986–2006). It describes the conditions faced by the large internally displaced population of Gulu during the war and explains why the town has remained relatively stable despite the massive influx it experienced of uprooted rural Acholi. The paper explores the social changes that have occurred among the displaced population within Gulu’s tenuous urban environment, focusing on the breakdown of male, lineage-based authority and on the impact of town life on women and ex-rebels. Finally, the paper charts the changes in displacement patterns that have occurred in Gulu since the end of the war as a new landless and marginalised population seek haven in town and as social conditions and tensions, instead of improving, worsen with peace.
This paper challenges traditional studies that explore border sites from a central or capital city perspective. Focusing on expressions of identity in the border city of Goma, it illustrates how the struggle for political, social and economic control affects local urban life and has broader implications for regional relationships and realities. The paper suggests that Goma must be understood as a site of change and fluidity rather than (as borders are commonly depicted) a static and dependent environment, whose increasing sense of autonomy is directly linked to state decline and to the dynamics of regional conflict. Goma has become an area of military rebellion, political struggle and economic competition, as well as a city of flourishing transborder trade and economic opportunity. The paper highlights the need to follow closely the increasing national and regional role that Goma, and other emerging urban centres on the periphery, are playing. This analysis was concluded early 2012 and does not include recent developments related to the M23 rebellion.
In the years immediately after the 1994 Rwandan genocide, Kigali was a site of continuing crisis amid extraordinary levels of urban population growth, as refugees returned to Rwanda in their millions. Yet unlike many post-conflict cities that spiral into endemic crime and instability, it was rapidly securitised in the context of political consolidation and large amounts of foreign aid, and hailed by the UN as a ‘model, modern city’. This paper analyses the government’s approach to securitising Kigali, interrogating how its rapid trajectory from epicentre of conflict to carefully planned showcase for development has been achieved. It is argued that Kigali bears the weight of many of Rwanda’s development aspirations and keeping it secure and orderly is viewed as critical by the government. After examining the national and local processes through which the government has aimed to achieve ‘secure urbanisation’, the potential longer-term implications of its urban development strategy are considered.
The article applies the Althusserian concept of overdetermination to a contemporary case of urban restructuring in the global South. Since the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, the international aid industry has been using its capital city, Kabul, as a laboratory and launch pad for liberal policies and programmes to demonstrate that security, economic growth and democracy are mutually reinforcing and can therefore be achieved in conjunction. These interventions have resulted in fundamental structural changes in Kabul’s political economy that mimic processes of accumulation by dispossession in the urban global North. Formerly shaped by indigenous political activism and cautious democratic experimentation, Kabul today is a space of accelerated accumulation in the shadows of international peacebuilding.
This paper focuses on the evolution of violence trends in the three biggest Colombian cities, Bogotá, Medellín, and Cali. Two of those cities, Bogotá and Medellín, were able to cut dramatically their homicide rates, while Cali did not. The taming of violence in Bogotá and Medellín challenges structural explanations of urban violence in Latin America, which suggest that the effects of neoliberalism, juxtaposed to already very high levels of inequality and social exclusion, should "overwhelm" municipal administrations. The systematic comparison of Bogotá and Medellín, on the one hand, and Cali, on the other, suggests that any explanation of urban violence reduction should take into account political dimensions, including in particular city-level coalition building.
This paper proposes an understanding of political violence in a major metropolis through the lens of informality in urban planning and land use. Political conflict in Karachi has been examined largely from the lens of ethnic identity. Here it is shown, using census data, how urban planning was implicated in the evolution of the city’s ethnic demography. Election results at the polling station level further confirm the importance of territory in Karachi’s violent political divisions. The literature on informal economic governance, and its insights on non-state contract enforcement and dispute resolution, is used to interpret case studies of three unplanned neighbourhoods. Various migrant cohorts had distinct experiences regarding informal economic governance and the politics of regularisation. These differences gave rise to two alternate modes of informal economic governance, which not only sustained violent political divisions, but also denied coercive monopoly to formal institutions of the state.
Timor-Leste’s celebrated journey to statehood violently unravelled in 2006. Why did the young state stumble so badly, given the overwhelming national consensus for independence and firm international support for reconstruction? This article argues that the city is central to state-making by mediating between forces of external and internal integration to build prosperity, citizenship and security, particularly in the context of fragile states. While external integration denotes the opening up of the state to the international community and its market, internal integration is about embedding economic, political and security aspects of state-making. The case of Timor-Leste illustrates these processes and how the urban crisis of 2006–07 occurred when the two forms of integration undermined, rather than reinforced, each other.
A night out in the metropolis can offer a plethora of hedonistic experiences in urban spaces such as waterfront districts, shopping boulevards and cultural precincts. In stark contrast to this post-modern spectacle of contemporary nightlife are the mundane night-time activities that pervade the everyday spaces of ordinary people. Here, we are confronted with a tapestry of a different material culture—one that has evaded the lacklustre and homogeneous pattern of urban bars, pubs and clubs. This paper will illuminate the sociospatial dimensions of everyday (night)life in the neighbourhood of Toa Payoh Central, Singapore, and will demonstrate the resilience of urban informality in an increasingly formal and regulated global city like Singapore. It is contended that everyday (night)life has a significant role to play in the making of vibrant and liveable cities by helping to foster social sustainability in the forms of accessibility, tolerance, diversity and participation.
The Beijing government has made massive investments in rail transit construction since the 2000s. While existing studies provide marginal values for rail access in the real estate market, little is known about homeowners’ happiness evaluation of such public investment. Using large-scale micro survey data, this paper estimates, in a difference-in-difference framework, the effects on homeowners’ happiness about public commuting and other residential realms of a transport improvement that altered the residence–station distance for some households, whilst leaving others unaffected. The estimation accounts for the endogeneity between the residential location choice and transport choice by using non-market (fang gai) housing with pre-determined residential location. It is found that better rail access not only provides sizeable happiness about public commuting to Beijing homeowners, but also affects their happiness in other residential realms. This finding adds to the evidence that public investment has an important role to play in influencing homeowners’ living experience.
Most Dutch cities have adopted urban restructuring policies aimed at creating a socially mixed population in deprived neighbourhoods. This entails the demolition of low-cost, social rented housing units, which leads to the displacement of their residents. While researchers have investigated the social effects of displacement on adults, this study is the first to provide insight into the effects on youths. The findings indicate that, although the first months after displacement youths lose some social contacts and stop participating in certain leisure activities, they show high levels of flexibility and soon make new friends and take up leisure activities in their new neighbourhood. No differences were found in friendships and leisure activities between displaced youths and those in a control group of non-displaced youths as reported at the time of the study. This confirms that in the long term the effects of displacement are limited.
This paper analyses the rising importance of sustainable principles in property decisions and its impact on attractiveness for business districts in France. A behavioural survey of a large sample of corporate property managers and a multiple correspondence analysis highlight key factors indicating the influence of sustainable principles alongside more traditional determinants of territorial attractiveness. This approach enables the drawing up of a typology of companies according to the influence of sustainability issues, showing the rise in importance placed on sustainability in location decisions made by listed companies, companies that own their head offices and companies located in the main business districts of the Paris metropolitan area.
Based on a lifetime consideration, previous research has extended Frank’s graphical model with borrowing, property taxes and moving costs to analyse the welfare effects of housing appreciation and depreciation, and has shown that appreciation can make homeowners worse off, but homeowners’ welfare cannot decrease with depreciation. The latter is counter-intuitive, especially for owners with a high portion of mortgage in a housing slump. Alternatively, this paper treats property tax as an annual taxation and measures mortgage loan as a portion of house value when it was purchased. It is shown that if a house owner adjusts his/her house size in response to a price change, then with a low mortgage loan (or no mortgage), the owner will be better off only when there is a large appreciation or depreciation, while he/she cannot be better off under depreciation if he/she bought that house largely via a mortgage loan.
China’s dramatic urban expansion has encompassed many peri-urban villages and turned them into so-called urban villages that provide a niche housing market for rural migrants for whom the formal housing market is unaffordable. Yet urban villages are very distinct from informal settlements elsewhere, because they are being developed by the original village community on collectively owned land. As these communities cannot sell their land and only build housing units for low-paid workers, the only way to make a higher return from their land is to increase its built intensity. This paper tests the hypothesis that the driving factors of this built intensity are analogous to factors that drive land prices in the formal city. Results of multivariate regression models of the built intensity of urban villages across the city of Shenzhen show a remarkable resemblance to hedonic models of land prices elsewhere. Location matters and access to employment, along with development constraints, are the most important determinants for the development of Shenzhen’s urban villages.
Despite growing interest in the study of intercity networks, researchers routinely lament the difficulties involved in obtaining the necessary data. This paper introduces and demonstrates a new programme, AIRNET, which generates intercity networks from publicly available data. Specifically, AIRNET processes airline traffic data from the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) to produce networks among US cities and airports. These data and networks are restricted to US cities, but nonetheless offer two major benefits to researchers seeking intercity network data. First, AIRNET produces four types of network—route, origin–destination, business and leisure—that can be used to explore distinct research questions and which can be customised using adjustable parameters that alter how the network is created. Secondly, it can produce each of these networks at multiple time points beginning in 1993, thereby providing researchers access to one of the only sources of longitudinal, dynamic intercity networks.
Urban residential neighbourhoods, including migrant neighbourhoods, have become important incubation zones for small businesses in recent years and policy-makers and academics alike are wondering which local factors affect this development. This paper analyses the extent to which migrant neighbourhood characteristics related to the built environment and the local regulations matter in determining the possibilities for small businesses. It contrasts two types of neighbourhood in the Netherlands—pre-war neighbourhoods with little functional separation between residential and commercial purposes, and post-war predominantly mono-functional residential neighbourhoods. Quantitative and qualitative methodologies are combined using available firm data from trade registers of the Dutch chambers of commerce, reviewing neighbourhood zoning regulations and conducting focus group and individual interviews with neighbourhood experts and entrepreneurs. It is found that the built and regulatory environment of migrant neighbourhoods does indeed appear to impact significantly on the chances of setting up a business and its subsequent fate.
This paper examines factors influencing Australian landlords’ decisions to retain their rental investments. A variety of statistical techniques are applied to uncover the factors precipitating the exit of landlords from rental housing markets. It is found that middle-aged investors are more attached to rental investments than younger investors. However, once retired, there is a sharp increase in the likelihood of exit from rental investments. The estimates also confirm the importance of financial variables. Leveraged loss-making investors with higher gross rental yields are more inclined to terminate leases. It is concluded that fiscal and monetary policy settings play an important role in shaping rental housing investment decisions, since interest rate and tax parameters are important in determining investors’ negative gearing status. These will in turn drive changes in housing supply and affordability in rental markets.
Attention to ‘sustainability’ and energy efficiency rating schemes in the commercial property sector has increased rapidly during the past decade. In the UK, commercial properties have been certified under the BREEAM rating scheme since 1999, offering fertile ground to investigate the economic dynamics of ‘green’ certification in the commercial property market. This paper documents that, over the 2000–09 period, the expanding supply of green buildings within a given London neighbourhood had a positive impact on average rents and prices, but reduced rents and prices for environmentally certified real estate. The results suggest that there is a gentrification effect from green buildings. However, each additional "green" building decreases the marginal effect of certification in the rental and transaction markets by 2 per cent and 5 per cent respectively. In addition, controlling for lease contract features, like contract length and the rent-free period, modifies the impact of environmental certification on rental prices.
The aim of the article is to analyse the impact of the self-evaluated ethnic composition of the place of residence on interethnic contacts and attitudes through the comparison of four Nordic countries. Data come from the European Social Survey 2002. Compared with ethnically homogeneous neighbourhoods, interethnic relationships are more common in ethnically mixed neighbourhoods with some self-reported ethnic minorities. However, living in an area with many perceived ethnic minorities does not necessarily increase the probability of having interethnic friends in all four countries. As contact theory suggests that, having interethnic friendship ties in combination with living in an ethnically mixed or ethnic neighbourhood is associated with the probability of having more tolerant attitudes towards immigrants in all four countries. Perceived ethnic threat, however, is generally at its lowest level in areas with only some ethnic minorities, which may leave some room for conflict or competition theories as well.
This paper explores the spatial and temporal patterns of green building in the commercial and institutional sectors in the US. While these buildings are becoming more commonplace, they have yet to reach a critical mass to affect the entire construction industry. Given the potential for green building practices to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions, the paper seeks to understand the geography of green building. Using multiple metrics, it explains the patterning of geography of LEED and Energy Star certified buildings in the US. Strong evidence is found of clustering at the metropolitan and sub-metropolitan scales. This exploratory research serves as a foundation for future research aimed at specifying the nature of agglomerative processes in green buildings.
This study returns to the topic of unauthorised development in the south of Italy. It starts by assessing the main positions that have informed the debate since the 1960s and evaluates the consequences of the condono edilizio (building amnesty) policy, in the light of the impact that illegal construction has had on the landscape, both urban, rural and coastal. A close observation of three case studies, unplanned settlements in Lazio, Campania and Sicily, suggests that the original energies and expectations behind their development have long since lost their momentum. Rather, the emergence of new evolutionary trends—hitherto underrepresented within the political debate—demand a different interpretative framework. Three design scenarios are outlined, based on recycling existing social and physical material: they translate into a future-oriented discourse those symptoms of change that are already appearing in an embryonic form throughout Italy’s Mezzogiorno.
The counties of the US Capital Region represent unique case studies of urban areas that face tremendous development pressures resulting from their proximity to Washington, DC. They cross two states: Maryland with a statewide smart growth programme and Virginia without such a programme. This unique location raises two questions: do statewide smart growth programmes lead counties to adopt smart growth policies?; and what are the local factors contributing to county decisions to apply these policies? Case study analysis was applied to examine these questions in the Capital Region based on three sources of evidence: state and county regulations and plans; interviews with county planners; and secondary data. The analysis indicates that state mandates shape county land use planning. While statewide incentive programmes/policies help Maryland’s counties to preserve their farmlands, they seem insufficient to change sprawling development patterns. County applications of smart growth policies are mainly driven by local needs and priorities.
In economic literature, the quality of life (QoL) in a city is usually assessed through the standard revealed-preference approach, which defines a QoL index as the monetary value of urban amenities. This paper proposes an innovative methodology to measure urban QoL when equity concerns arise. The standard approach is extended by introducing preferences for even accessibility to amenities throughout the city into the QoL assessment. The QoL index is then reformulated to account for the unequal availability of amenities across neighbourhoods. The more unbalanced the distribution of amenities across neighbourhoods, the lower the assessment based on the new index. This methodology is applied to derive a QoL index for the city of Milan. The results show that the unequal distribution of amenities across neighbourhoods significantly affects the assessment of QoL for that city.
The Seoul metropolitan government (SMG) is considering the replacement of at-grade or elevated railways penetrating the city’s central area with underground subways. The railways once played a key role in forming main transit corridors in the early development stages of the city of Seoul. Now, however, they are a burden in the efforts of the SMG to enhance livability in the vicinity of urban railways. Over the past few decades, the at-grade elevated railways have led to economic deterioration by severing neighbourhoods and causing serious environmental problems such as noise, vibration and an unattractive landscape. The present study focused on laying the empirical groundwork for the SMG to replace at-grade or elevated railways with underground subways. An aggregate-level regression model, in a form similar to a hedonic price model, was developed to identify the net influence of the existence of at-grade or elevated railways on nearby land values. Potential variables that would account for the price of land along urban railways were chosen based on insights and empirical results from previous studies. Statistical tests have verified a significant difference in several variables according to whether a station area belongs to at-grade (or elevated) railways or underground subways. As a result of the regression model, it was confirmed that the land price of areas along at-grade or elevated railways are much less than those along underground railways, all else being equal.
Much public participation research is built on the assumption that participatory arrangements empower citizens and disrupt existing power structures. This article challenges that claim. Drawing on one participatory venue considered most likely to empower citizens in Basel, Switzerland, the study shows that meaningful collective power has been conferred to citizens. However, resourceful and organisationally privileged actors have influenced the impact of citizen’s demands on public decision-making in significant ways. The study concludes that the production and implementation of collective power deriving from citizens depends on distributive power sources residing in governments and bureaucracies. As a result, participatory arrangements that aim to direct state action have to conform to some extent to the rules and structures underlying ordinary policy-making. The case study highlights the intertwined relationship of the ‘power to’ and the ‘power over’ and shows how the interplay between these two forms of power places conditions on the empowering potential of participatory arrangements.
Despite the documented importance of the neighbourhood environment on youth physical activity, little empirical research exists regarding the geographical boundaries of neighbourhoods within which youth are physically active around their homes. Studies and public policies often arbitrarily assume the extent of these boundaries, which vary from study to study. This paper combines GPS data, diaries and accelerometry to delineate empirically the local area and distance within which youth play in Erie County, New York. The study found that youth tend to be physically active within a quarter-mile radius around their homes and to focus on one section of the often assumed circled neighbourhood.
Intergenerational support between parents and children in Chinese cities has been dramatically affected by recent social changes. This paper investigates the changing pattern of intergenerational housing support between retired old parents and their children, and the legacy of public housing in shaping this pattern. By initially establishing an up-to-date picture of intergenerational housing support between retired old parents and their children, it seeks to determine how this support depends on whether parents have previously been allocated public housing and, if so, on whether they have disposed of it or have continued to occupy it. A survey with 1000 retired old people from Tianjin in 2009 is used for the analysis. A support flow model is used to go beyond studying housing support per se, and to study the flow of intergenerational support in both directions and in different forms.
Dutch politicians claim that disorder and nuisance in the public domain have grown out of hand in deprived areas and that local inhabitants call for more repression. Recently, new administrative measures were introduced to tackle these issues more effectively, some of which were almost exact copies of British measures like the ASBO. Studies on ASB have usually focused on general views among the population. The present qualitative research studies the assumptions that the situation with respect to ASB has got out of hand and that the call for repression is dominant amongst local inhabitants. It is based on intensive fieldwork including observations and over 300 qualitative interviews with social workers, policemen, troublemakers themselves, and residents of 11 so-called problem neighbourhoods in four major Dutch cities. The study shows a more nuanced and mixed local public discourse on this policy landscape than politicians would like us to believe.
Managing urban growth is inherently contentious. Government policies seek to facilitate and spatially contain growth, while balancing public and private interests. The need for climate adaptation strategies in the urban context is recognised but arguably poorly institutionalised in growth management policies or in urban governance more broadly. This paper considers how debates around urban adaptation and growth management are structured in the discourses of local government, private developers and other actors. A discourse analysis of written submissions and media releases from four urban policy debates in Queensland, Australia, is presented. The analysis highlights the discursive strategies employed by different actors and the way their arguments have been consolidated in the practices of urban policy-making. The analysis suggests a divergence of growth and adaptation storylines, contributing to maintaining the gap between these policy agendas. Progress may be made, however, in the pragmatic discourses of actual policy implementation.
This paper examines the notion of democratic accountability through an investigation of metropolitan governance in South Hampshire, UK. The author employs an interpretive approach to trace varying readings of democratic accountability and to analyse how these notions reflect and influence specific institutional arrangements. The paper highlights how accountability can be strategically deployed to accomplish and bolster diverse policy and political objectives and how these interpretations impact the quality of democratic engagement
Prior research has shown that neighbourhood racial and income contexts remain similar across generations within White, Black and Latino families in the US. This article builds on this research by examining the extent to which geographical mobility during the transition to adulthood attenuates the perpetuation of residential segregation from Whites among Asians, Blacks and Latinos. Data from the National Education Longitudinal Study linked to 1990 and 2000 US census data were analysed. Results suggest that residential exposure to Whites is similar during youth and adulthood among young adults who live in the same metropolitan area where they lived as adolescents, regardless of race/ethnicity. Among those who migrate to another metropolitan area, adolescent exposure predicts exposure among Asian, Black and Latino young adults, but not among Whites themselves. Thus, limited experience with integrated neighbourhoods during adolescence among non-Whites and limited geographical mobility among all young adults help to perpetuate segregation.
Much of what is known of street homelessness is informed by accounts from urban centres throughout North America and the UK. The nature of the problem and the wa