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The Political Dimension of Place Branding
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stockholm Business School.
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Place branding is commonly understood as the application of marketing and commercial ideas, strategies, measurements and logic to the realm of places such as cities, regions and nations. Nevertheless, place branding is also understood as the locus where political activities – imbued with political impact and political effects – appear and affect the soft and hard infrastructures of urban agglomeration and other spatial environments. In this regard, by performing an analysis that helps unpack the multiple characters and impacts of political structures and processes in relation to place branding activities, the present dissertation aims to offer a conceptualization of the political dimension of place branding. By drawing on the critical assessment of the academic literature on place branding and on a series of studies about the branding processes in the region of Romagna and in the Greater Stockholm, the present dissertation further specifies an alternative conceptual framework (i.e. ecological politics) that suggests how place branding should be seen an empirical and theoretical political apparatus that acts, in praxis, based on an emerging, multifaceted and spatio-temporal enfolding of politics. More specifically, the ecological politics of place branding is characterized by four main aspects: the unfolding of a biopolitical ecology around place-branding practices; the ideological appropriation of place-branding processes; the positioning through politicized actions between the interest groups; and finally place-branding as a process of policy-intervention. Finally, on more general level, the present dissertation, by recognizing the political activities and efforts of place branding as crucial elements to be analyzed, makes the case for a more explicit, complex and manifold political analysis of the political dimension of place branding, which allows attention to be given to the impact that branding processes, practices and activities have on cities, regions and nations

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Stockholm Business School, Stockholm University , 2015. , 107 p.
Keyword [en]
politics, ecology, place branding, policy, positioning, ideology, biopolitical, complexity, spatio-temporal
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-123689ISBN: 978-91-7649-222-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-123689DiVA: diva2:875902
Public defence
2016-02-05, Gröjersalen, hus 3, Kräftriket, Roslagsvägen 101, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 4: Manuscript.

 

Available from: 2016-01-13 Created: 2015-12-02 Last updated: 2015-12-16Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Unraveling the complexity of "city brand equity": a three-dimensional framework
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Unraveling the complexity of "city brand equity": a three-dimensional framework
2012 (English)In: Journal of Place Management and Development, ISSN 1753-8335, E-ISSN 1753-8343, Vol. 5, no 3, 231-252 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to offer a framework for the analysis and evaluation of city brands equity that is firmly anchored to the interdisciplinary characteristics of the city branding research domain.

Design/methodology/approach – The study builds upon a database of 217 articles dealing with the phenomena of city branding retrieved from Lucarelli and Berg.

Findings – City brands are understood by different scholars as being characterized by both intangible and tangible elements, properly researched adopting a mixture of different methods and endowing certain type of outcomes that concern both the more directly related image and identity of the city as well, to a larger extent, the socio-political and economical aspects.

Research limitations/implications – The study is based only on published English articles in the last 20 years.

Originality/value – The present paper suggests a framework that is based on the individualization of diverse city brand elements and the relations those have with the reported impact and the methodologies applied to reach this purpose. The framework can be used for both analyzing city brand equity research and practices. The paper contributes to the emerging field of city branding by offering a city brand equity framework that goes beyond the previous attempt in its interdisciplinary breath.

Keyword
Brand equity, Brands, City brands, Equity, Evaluation, Impact, Interdisciplinary, Measurement
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-80881 (URN)10.1108/17538331211269648 (DOI)
Available from: 2012-10-01 Created: 2012-10-01 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
2. The political nature of brand governance: a discourse analysis approach to a regional brand building process
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The political nature of brand governance: a discourse analysis approach to a regional brand building process
2016 (English)In: Journal of Public Affairs, ISSN 1472-3891, E-ISSN 1479-1854, Vol. 16, no 1, 16-27 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The present paper takes the empirical phenomenon of place branding as an appropriate point of view to understand the communicative process of brand governance in the realm of the public. The paper explores the modalities through which a brand governance emerges as a negotiated and contested mechanism reproduced through language. By drawing on the analytical approach of interpretative repertoires, the analysis demonstrates that a process of governance can be seen as a ‘text’ in a constant state of negotiation in which the level of involvement in the brand building process can be discursively contested, with language illustrating the ways in which different actors express their positionalities (hegemonic or subalternate). The analysis suggests that this can be seen as a power political process in which politics of space and time are expressed linguistically by the different actors involved in brand governance.

National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-114397 (URN)10.1002/pa.1557 (DOI)000372506200003 ()
Available from: 2015-03-03 Created: 2015-03-03 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
3. Brand transformation: a performative approach to brand regeneration
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Brand transformation: a performative approach to brand regeneration
2015 (English)In: Journal of Marketing Management, ISSN 0267-257X, E-ISSN 1472-1376, Vol. 31, no 1-2, 84-106 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Traditional brand management literature largely implies that the brand regeneration process is linear, atomistic and rather harmonic, thus reducing the complexity of the process to individual parts that can be managed rationally and logically in sequence. By ontologically as well as epistemologically adopting a performative approach where brands are seen as loose performative assemblages, the present article suggests instead that the brand regeneration process is truly processual, multiple and political. A specific brand regeneration process should be seen as relationally spatial and as only one of several possible ‘realities’. The argument is based on an analysis of a 5-year-long case study of the branding of Stockholm, inspired by a Latourian hybrid fieldwork approach. Based on the analysis, the novel concept ‘brand transformation’ is suggested to frame the characteristics and complexities of the brand regeneration process.

Keyword
brand regeneration, brand transformation, political, processual, multiple, relational space, performativity, assemblage
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-110046 (URN)10.1080/0267257X.2014.982688 (DOI)
Available from: 2014-12-04 Created: 2014-12-04 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
4. Ecologizing the co-creation of brand and stakeholder identity in the virtual realm: an analysis of the practices of virtual brand co-creation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Ecologizing the co-creation of brand and stakeholder identity in the virtual realm: an analysis of the practices of virtual brand co-creation
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The present paper offers an epistemological approach (i.e. ecological) that helps analyze the modalities of the process of co-creating brand and stakeholder identity in the virtual realm. By extending previous critical research on brand and stakeholder identity in the virtual realm the present paper suggests how the process of co-creation should be analysed and conceptualized based on practices involving the co-construction of visualization and materialization. The analysis is based on a series of webpage characterizing how the branding of the city of Stockholm unfolds in a network of different types of stakeholders. Finally, the present paper suggests how the co-creation process of brand and stakeholder identities is less manageable, democratic and analytically traceable than the existing literature suggests.

National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-123671 (URN)
Available from: 2015-12-01 Created: 2015-12-01 Last updated: 2015-12-15Bibliographically approved

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