Authors:Lena Magnusson Turner; Terje Wessel Pages: 1 - 16 Abstract: Our purpose in this article is to examine socio‐economic and spatial integration of ethnic minorities in the Oslo region. We analyse relocation between 1998 and 2008 for members of ten minority groups along three overlapping dimensions: upwards in the neighbourhood hierarchy, outwards from the inner city to all suburbs, and westwards from a less affluent to a more affluent part of the region. The results provide some limited support for spatial assimilation theory. Two minority groups, Iranians and Vietnamese, comply partly with the theory. Another group, Filipinos, has stagnated in its socio‐economic and spatial integration. The remaining groups do not relocate in accordance with the native pattern, or fail to integrate in socio‐economic terms. The discrepancy between theory and results is most pronounced along the westward axis. We interpret the results in a broader context of regional and national circumstances: spatial assimilation theory may have different utility in different welfare regimes, depending on spatial inequality and the politics of place. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12006
Authors:Amin Y. Kamete Pages: 17 - 31 Abstract: In this article I reconsider the handling of urban informality by urban planning and management systems in southern Africa. I argue that authorities have a fetish about formality and that this is fuelled by an obsession with urban modernity. I stress that the desired city, largely inspired by Western notions of modernity, has not been and cannot be realized. Using illustrative cases of top–down interventions, I highlight and interrogate three strategies that authorities have deployed to handle informality in an effort to create or defend the modern city. I suggest that the fetish is built upon a desire for an urban modernity based on a concept of formal order that the authorities believe cannot coexist with the “disorder” and spatial “unruliness” of informality. I question the authorities' conviction that informality is an abomination that needs to be “converted”, dislocated or annihilated. I conclude that the very configuration of urban governance and socio‐economic systems in the region, like the rest of sub‐Saharan Africa, renders informality inevitable and its eradication impossible. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12007
Authors:Brian Egan Pages: 33 - 50 Abstract: In British Columbia, Canada's westernmost province, unresolved Aboriginal claims to land remain highly contentious. Since the early 1990s, a unique treaty negotiation process has sought to resolve questions about land ownership and establish a new relationship between Aboriginal peoples and the Crown. After almost two decades, the limitations of this treaty process are increasingly evident and answers to the land question remain elusive. This article examines this treaty‐making process through a property lens, focusing on how particular models of property are privileged by and produced through this approach to treaty. I argue that the treaty process, as currently structured, works to entrench dominant Western forms of property across Aboriginal territories in a highly separate and unequal manner, and as such, serves to reinscribe asymmetrical relations of power between Aboriginal peoples and the Crown. To a considerable extent, this asymmetrical approach to property making explains the lack of progress towards treaties. The final part of the article explores alternative approaches to treaty proposed by Aboriginal groups. I argue that these proposals, which reflect Aboriginal understandings of property, offer a new and more promising direction for treaty making. In particular, the emphasis on sharing lands and resources, as well as the wealth generated from these, provides a path to reconcile competing property interests and to build a new and more respectful relationship between the Crown and Aboriginal peoples. I suggest that the difficulties of treaty making in British Columbia reflect broader challenges associated with land restitution and reconciliation in settler colonies. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12008
Authors:Erki Tammiksaar; Taavi Pae, Ott Kurs Pages: 51 - 70 Abstract: The aim of this article is to analyse the accommodation of Estonian geographical science into that of the Soviet Union after World War II. The process is viewed in the context of scientific and political developments in the Soviet Union on the basis of the scientific legacies of Edgar Kant (1902–1978), the first professor in economic geography in the pre‐war Republic of Estonia, and Salme Nõmmik (1910–1988), the first professor of economic geography in Soviet Estonia. Kant, who was recognized abroad and was probably the first who proposed to apply Walter Christaller's (1893– 1969) central place theory, namely, in reorganization of Estonian rural communities (1935–1938), was in disgrace in Soviet Estonia where his works were actively criticized. This article distinguishes, for the first time, different periods in the reception and valuation of the scholarly activities of Kant in Estonia during the Soviet period. On the basis of the archival documents of the Estonian Historical Archives, the department of manuscripts of the University of Tartu Library, and archive of the University of Tartu, it appears that in her investigations, Nõmmik often made use of the concepts Kant had put forward before the war. As a result, Estonian geography managed to secure an important position in the discipline of economic geography in the USSR. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12009
Authors:Rune Dahl Fitjar Pages: 71 - 88 Abstract: As social communities, regions are built through discourses that convey images of what the region is. Regions are built for a variety of reasons, including political and economic ones. This implies that changing economic circumstances have the potential to change the discourses on regional identities. Petroleum discoveries represent such a potential change in the economic circumstances of a region. This study of an emerging petroleum region in the north of Norway shows that a regional identity discourse is used to claim ownership over the petroleum resources in the Barents Sea in order to justify the need for a production plan that maximizes regional economic benefits. In this way, the discovery of petroleum represents an opportunity to reinforce regional identities around a set of common interests. However, “the region” is vaguely defined in this discourse, being used in reference to two different scales: Finnmark and Northern Norway. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12010
Authors:Toni Ahlqvist Pages: 89 - 109 Abstract: It can be argued that the relational approach, and especially the so‐called relational economic geography, would benefit from deeper engagement with the practical and strategic dimensions of spatial relations. The article proposes a notion of engineering spatial fix as a way to conceptualize these dimensions. The idea is to widen the conceptual sphere of relationality from spontaneous ties or abstract networked power effects towards relational spatial practices. Theoretically, the article aims to bridge the strategic‐relational and the network‐topological approaches through a stylized meso‐level practice‐oriented approach. It is suggested that in economic geography, relations can be grasped through two basic perspectives: relations as analytical lenses and relations as spatial practices. The article proposes that the relational spatial practices can be divided into two dimensions: topological and strategic. The article presents a case study of a science‐technology district of Turku in 1985–2001, which fleshes out the theoretical elaborations. In the process, the relational concept of synergy is utilized as a context‐specific strategic resource as the district evolves from an initial separate building to a distinct and materialized geographical structure. PubDate: 2013-02-28T07:21:43.526784-05: DOI: 10.1111/geob.12011
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