Urban and Regional Coherence 

Speaker: Evert Mijers, Francisco Colombo

Tuesday, 15th October  9:15-12:00

Location: Bouwkunde, Room B

evert lecture-8

Cities cannot be studied in isolation. New paradigms in urban studies and planning emphasise the importance of cities’ embeddedness in networks of all kinds – business, capital, knowledge, people, goods – for their performance (Castells 1996; Massey et al. 1999; Sassen 2002; Taylor 2003; Hall and Pain 2006; Neal 2012). While traditionally there has been much emphasis on global networks of large, metropolitan cities, nowadays there is also more interest in relationships between cities that are located close to each other. Such clusters of close, but once distinct and independent cities, form polycentric metropolitan areas. In this lecture, we will pay attention to coherence in urban systems on these different scales, thus ranging from global city networks to coherence in polycentric metropolitan areas such as the Randstad. It will become evident that ‘coherence’  is a complicated concept and may vary according to the perspective adopted:  the spatial organization of different types of functional linkages is not necessarily identical, and that this multiplexity needs to be taken into account as a region can appear spatially integrated based on the analysis of one type of functional linkage but loosely connected regarding another. Even when there are multiple types of flows taken into account, there is a need to differentiate analyses according to subgroups, as individual level heterogeneity may also lead to very different patterns of relationships. In the lecture, we particularly also focus on the Randstad area.

Required reading:

Badcock, B (2002) Urban Systems and the Growth of Cities, in Badcock, B. Making sense of cities. London: Hodder Headline group. pp.34-60.

Burger, M, Meijers, E. & F. van Oort (2013) Multiple perspectives on functional coherence: heterogeneity and multiplexity in the Randstad. Paper accepted for publication in TESG Journal of Economic and Social Geography.


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