||NEIGHBORHOOD BRANDING: THE UNDERESTIMATION OF PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES
||Havermans, Dave; Smeets, Jos; Heijs, Wim
||In the present globalized world place branding has developed as a strategy to distinguish a place from other places in order to attract tourists, financial capital and certain specific target groups (e.g. knowledge workers) or to hold on to present inhabitants. Especially, the branding of nations, regions and cities has gained a lot of attention. Recently, the idea of branding neighborhoods has been introduced in urban revitalization processes by several municipalities and housing associations in the Netherlands. It is applied in order to counteract the stigmatization of deprived neighborhoods and to revitalize these places into physically and socially differentiated entities based on the perceived atmosphere, feelings and emotions of the neighborhood. Central in the neighborhood branding process is the search for the (aspired) identity in terms of the key values of the neighborhood. It is often stressed that the branding of deprived areas has positive effects on support among residents for redeveloping deprived areas and on communication between parties. In this paper, however, it is argued that neighborhood branding is not only a mean to stimulate the process of revitalization but also that the outcome of it (the actual brand) should be present and perceived in the physical environment. By this approach a residential environment can be created with which present and future users of the neighborhood can identify. Based on literature and several interviews this paper, which is based on an ongoing PhD study, explores how the identity of neighborhoods is being constructed. Specifically, it examines which physical attributes are important in the creation of the identity of residential places. In the first section an outline will be given on urban renewal policy in the Netherlands and its shift towards a more marketing-oriented approach. Next, the phenomenon of place branding and neighborhood branding in particular will be discussed. Subsequently, the concept of identity of place will be described and an overview of important physical attributes is given. The paper ends with some conclusions and recommendations for this ongoing PhD project and future research.
|Year of publication:
||Neighborhood branding, revitalization, identity of place
Havermans, Dave; Smeets, Jos; Heijs, Wim (2010).
NEIGHBORHOOD BRANDING: THE UNDERESTIMATION OF PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES. 17th Annual European Real Estate Society Conference in Milan, Italy,