Details on article
|Author||de Jong M.; Lu H.
|Title||City branding, regional identity and public space: What historical and cultural symbols in urban architecture reveal|
de Jong M.; Lu H. City branding, regional identity and public space: What historical and cultural symbols in urban architecture reveal,Global Public Policy and Governance 2 2
|Link to article|| https://www.scopus.com/inward/record.uri?eid=2-s2.0-85138416551&doi=10.1007%2fs43508-022-00043-0&partnerID=40&md5=3cd5676373b811b15d9e2bf8661e3602
|Abstract||City branding as produced by local governments has been widely recognized as a modern version of government communication. Local governments convey attractive features of their identity to current and potential stakeholders in their cities. In this contribution, we examine how municipal governments have used urban design as a form of city branding reflecting the identity of the historical (sub)region in which they are located. We do this in a French border region where features of medieval, Burgundian and Spanish Netherlandish traditions can still clearly be distinguished in public buildings: Nord-Pas-de-Calais, and more specifically its five subregions Maritime Flanders, Roman Flanders, Hainaut, Artesia and Cambrai. We systematically map historical and cultural symbols found on leading public urban architecture and indicate to which era of origin and identity feature they refer. We do this for a selection of 17 municipalities of over 20,000 inhabitants. We find that symbols to pre-French traditions are still very conspicuous (Flemish architecture, typical beer bars, selective use of ancient Dutch language), but also that as new political powers establish themselves in a region these symbols are redefined such that such regional identities are in line with new ‘national requirements’ and become ‘innocuous’. Classicist building styles, French military works and war memorials and modernist architecture embed and blend with these ancient traditions and make regional identities multi-layered. Either way, ‘thin’ instrumental and identities pushed by governments grow ‘thick’ and deeply felt over the centuries. © 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Institute for Global Public Policy, Fudan University.