By Nigel Thrift, Ash Amin
This e-book develops a clean and not easy viewpoint at the urban. Drawing on a large and various diversity of fabric and texts, it argues that an excessive amount of modern city thought relies on nostalgia for a humane, face-to-face and bounded urban. Amin and Thrift preserve that the conventional divide among town and the remainder of the realm has been perforated via city encroachment, the thickening of the hyperlinks among the 2, and urbanization as a fashion of life.
They define an leading edge sociology of the town that scatters city existence alongside a chain of web sites and circulations, reinstating formerly suppressed parts of up to date city lifestyles: from the presence of non-human task to the centrality of far away connections. the consequences of this perspective are traced via a chain of chapters on energy, economic system and democracy.
This concise and available publication might be of curiosity to scholars and students in sociology, geography, city reviews, cultural reviews and politics.
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Additional resources for Cities: Reimagining the Urban
In one city an airport or restaurant might suffice as the site for international meetings, while in another city the financial district might be implicated. Somewhere else, a production facility might link up workers commuting from the urban periphery to supply chains drawing in cities thousands of miles away. A network site displays no distinctive pattern of spatial connections. Nor does it perform a fixed function, as was the case in older urban hierarchies, when capital cities were centres of administration and research, intermediate cities were sites of special ized production, and peripheral or less developed cities were sites of cheap labour for unskilled work.
But rarely is the stock held for long. For 'current logistic systems are so sophisticated that, whereas a one-hour delay in a delivery used to be a problem, now a ten-minute delay appears as an excep tion report to the IT Director of Tesco. Fork-lift trucks in ware houses are fitted with a computer terminal . Deliveries are sche duled throughout the day and night, so goods spend the minimum time in the stores' (Seth and Randall 1999: 221). Excel Logistics in the UK is a typical example. According to Valerie Bence, 'in the four years from 1989 to 1993 Excel Logistics grew to be a market leader in distribution and supply chain services....
Thereby providing opportunity to transfer tacit knowledge . . It is the combination of social cohesion and openness to new knowledge . . followed by ability to integrate that knowledge and reconfigure existing knowledge that defines competitiveness, notably under hypercompetition. (Ettlinger 2000: 27) The claim is that local proximity is a vital source of innovation-based competitiveness. There are, however, three problems with this claim. First, rarely does tacit knowledge work in isolation from codified know ledge; competitive advantage is normally the result of how the two are combined (Amin and Cohendet 1999).
Cities: Reimagining the Urban by Nigel Thrift, Ash Amin