[URBANTH-L]2nd Cfp: AAG2009 - The Cultural Economy of Small Cities

Bas van Heur basvanheur at gmx.net
Mon Sep 22 12:05:41 EDT 2008

Apologies for cross-posting - Second call for papers:


Annual Association of American Geographers Conference, Las Vegas,
22-27 March 2009

Paper session:
The Cultural Economy of Small Cities: Creativity, Knowledge and Urban
Spatial Development.

Organizers: Mark Jayne (Geography, School of Environment and
Development, University of Manchester, UK) and Bas van Heur
(Maastricht Virtual Knowledge Studio, Faculty of Arts and Social
Sciences, Maastricht University, NL).

The last decade in particular has seen the emergence of a discourse
that understands creative production as central to the economic
development of urban spaces. The `urban' in this context, however, has
almost invariably referred to large global or capital cities such as
London, New York, San Francisco, Amsterdam or Berlin. With a few
exceptions (e.g. Christopherson 2004; Bell and Jayne 2006), small
cities have been ignored and remain under-investigated. This session
tries to counter this bias in urban geography by focusing on the
following questions:

In what ways are policy strategies developed for large cities
applicable to small cities?

Are creative entrepreneurs such as artists, designers and musicians -
i.e. those actors analytically privileged in most studies on the
creative economy and the cultural industries - the most relevant
actors in the case of small cities? Or should we be looking for other
creative and innovative actors (and actor constellations) in other

Large cities tend to dominate the surrounding landscape through their
concentration of media, jobs and governmental institutions. How does
this urban hierarchy shape the very attempts of small cities to
develop and promote local creative economies?

To what extent do the dynamics of small cities necessitate a
rethinking of dominant theories and concepts used to explain the
creative economy?

Authors that address these - and other relevant - questions are
invited to submit a brief abstract (not more than 250 words) to the
session organizers Mark Jayne (mark.jayne at manchester.ac.uk) and Bas
van Heur (b.vanheur at vks.unimaas.nl) by October 1st at the latest.


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