Case Study Window – Culture in International Sustainability Practices and Perspectives: The Experience of ‘Slow City Movement – Cittaslow’

Authored by: Tüzin Baycan , Luigi Fusco Girard

The Ashgate Research Companion to Planning and Culture

Print publication date:  September  2013
Online publication date:  March  2016

Print ISBN: 9781409422242
eBook ISBN: 9781315613390
Adobe ISBN: 9781317042167


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In recent decades, a shift from a more traditional concept of culture as linked to the classical ‘fine arts’ towards an understanding of ‘cultural resources’, ‘cultural and creative industries’, ‘cultural diversity’ and ‘a way of life’ has been observed (Baycan 2011, Baycan-Levent 2010, Bianchini 2004, Cooke and Lazeretti 2008, Cunningham 2001, Evans 2009, Ghilardi 2001, UNCTAD 2004). While knowledge, culture and creativity have been increasingly recognized as key strategic assets and powerful engines driving economic growth, the high concentrations of heterogeneous social groups with different cultural backgrounds and different ways of life have made cities incubators of culture and creativity (Baycan-Levent 2010, Merkel 2011, UNCTAD 2008). Besides knowledge and innovation, culture and creativity have become the new key resources in urban competitiveness. Cultural production in itself has become a major economic sector and a source for the competitive advantage of cities (Florida 2002, Merkel 2011, Miles and Paddison 2005, Musterd and Ostendorf 2004, Zukin 1995). Knowledge, culture and creativity have also become the new keywords in the understanding of new urban transformations (Hall 2004). The existing literature shows that cultural and creative industries are deeply embedded in urban economies (Foord 2008, Pratt 2008, Scott 2000). The role of cultural production in the new economy has radically changed the patterns of cultural consumption (Quinn 2005), and cities have transformed from functioning as ‘landscape of production’ to ‘landscape of consumption’ (Zukin 1998). In parallel to this transformation or ‘cultural turn’, ‘culture-led regeneration’ and ‘cultural planning’ have become the main strategies of cities.

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