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Showing papers in "Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers in 2021"


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: How the data mobilised by the smart city apps enacts particular versions of these values, and how those values co‐constitute specific kinds of bodies, agencies, and geographies in digitally mediated cities is examined.
Abstract: Recent scholarship on smart cities and platform urbanism has explored the very wide range of data harvested from urban environments by digital devices of many kinds, analysing how not only efficiencies but also profits are sought through the extraction, circulation, transformation, commodification, integration, and re‐use of data Much of that data is generated by smartphone applications This paper looks at the design of a group of eight smartphone apps by a range of different actors in Milton Keynes, a small UK city with a large number of smart city initiatives The apps are understood as a co‐constitutive interface between data circulations and embodied users The paper focuses specifically on the data that the apps generated and shared and on how the app designers anticipated that the data would create different kinds of value for embodied app users While some data circulations were understood as ways of generating financial value, the paper argues that a number of other forms of value were assumed in the app design The paper identifies two of these, which it terms normative values and interactive values It examines how the data mobilised by the smart city apps enacts particular versions of these values, and how those values co‐constitute specific kinds of bodies, agencies, and geographies in digitally mediated cities

37 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors used the Royal Geographical Society Environment and Sustainability Grant (RGSES) and the University of Bristol's vice-chancellor's research fellowship (VCRSF) to investigate the effects of climate change on agriculture.
Abstract: Funding: Royal Geographical Society Environment and Sustainability Grant; University of Bristol (Vice-Chancellor's Research Fellowship)

29 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors argue that care does not simply name practices of social reproduction or emotional attachment, but is a distinct mode of ethics, both visible in the social world and capable of informing academic practice.
Abstract: Human geography has experienced a burgeoning interest in care Despite this, the more radical potentials of thinking with, and through, care remain largely unexplored In this paper, we critically examine one such potential, asking how care might facilitate a substantial rethinking of practices of research and analysis within human geography We argue that care does not simply name practices of social reproduction or emotional attachment, but is a distinct mode of ethics, both visible in the social world and capable of informing academic practice We ask what it means to recognise everyday accounts as acts of care, and to analyse these same accounts through an ethic of care where knowledge, action, relating to others, and the shaping of ethical commitment are inextricably intertwined While, typically, everyday accounts are seen as about some sort of underlying meaning or dynamic, we suggest that such accounts need to be understood as parts of efforts to navigate and re-make social worlds We unfold our argument by first tracing how care has been understood and analysed within human geography as a shifting and situated social practice Building on, but moving beyond, such approaches, we examine social worlds as ?matters of care?, where everyday understandings, and the potential for action and ethical commitment are not only continually negotiated, but are staunchly kept open to new possibilities Through the close reading of extracts from in-depth interviews with first-time parents in the city of Oxford, UK, we illustrate how care offers a committed practice of knowing and relating within research We argue this approach provides new ways of thinking about geographical research, where primary research, analysis and scholarly narratives are all implicated in the remaking of everyday worlds which, in turn, reveal a new terrain of political potentiality

29 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors examine the relationship between forms of governance in municipal cemetery and crematorium provision and the needs of established minorities, arguing that inadequate infrastructure and services can constitute harm.
Abstract: Building on embodied and de-colonial approaches to geopolitics, this paper examines the relationship between forms of governance in municipal cemetery and crematorium provision and the needs of established minorities, arguing that inadequate infrastructure and services can constitute harm Crucially, it is contended that forms of governance impact not only on the living, but also on perceptions of the wellbeing of the dead Grounded in a study of four towns in England and Wales, the paper identifies firstly how intersectional identity fundamentally shapes people’s experiences of deathscape governance; secondly, the possibilities of infrastructural benefits of inclusive services; and thirdly, the harms done by non-inclusive forms of governance, implicit territoriality and inadequate infrastructure This is evidenced in the negative impact of municipal cemetery organization and management on specific minority groups, such as inadequate burial space, high burial costs, hinderances to timely rituals, and protracted planning processes; as well as reduced access to services as a result of government austerity measures The conclusion calls for a wider conceptualization of necropolitics, based on a critical-feminist-decolonial geopolitics of deathscapes in multicultural societies, and offers insights for the practical governance of inclusive cemeteries and crematoria

24 citations




Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors extend and enhance the relational approach to globalisation and place by drawing on theoretical insights from assemblage thinking to articulate a methodological framework for empirical research and explore how the concepts of the exteriority of relations, territorialisation, coding, and multiplicity provide insights into the dynamics through which interactions between places and translocal assemblages affect changes in the properties and capacities of places and of their component parts.
Abstract: Relational perspectives have become pre‐eminent in geographical analysis of globalisation and its impacts in reshaping places, yet arguably leave unanswered questions about precisely how globalisation is reproduced through local places in practice. This paper seeks to extend and enhance the relational approach to globalisation and place by drawing on theoretical insights from assemblage thinking to articulate a methodological framework for empirical research. It draws on DeLanda's iteration of Deleuzoguattarian assemblage thinking to explore how the concepts of the exteriority of relations, territorialisation, coding, and multiplicity provide insights into the dynamics through which interactions between places and translocal assemblages affect changes in the properties and capacities of places and of their component parts, the internal adjustment of places to changes in components, and the possible future forms that a place may take following specific interactions. As such, the framework outlined advances relational analysis by permitting deeper analysis of the mechanics through which individual places endure and change in the context of globalisation and how these produce uneven geographies of globalisation. The discussion is illustrated by examples from empirical research on globalisation and rural localities.

17 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors conceptualize and analyse sensor deserts through two case studies, Newcastle's Urban Observatory (UK) and Chicago's Array of Things (US), and illustrate how the structural processes via which inequality is reinforced by smart agendas manifest as uneven social and spatial outcomes.
Abstract: As a central component of the smart city, sensor infrastructures locate and measure a wide range of variables in order to characterise the urban environment. Perhaps the most visible expression of the smart city, sensor deployment is a key equity concern. As new sensor technologies and resultant data interact with social processes, they have the potential to reproduce well-documented spatial injustices. Contrary to promises of providing new knowledge for cities, they can also create new gaps in understanding about specific urban populations that fall into the interstices of data collection—what we term sensor deserts. Building upon emerging data justice debates, specifically considering distributional, recognition and procedural forms of injustice, we conceptualise and analyse sensor deserts through two case studies, Newcastle’s Urban Observatory (UK) and Chicago’s Array of Things (US). Open sensor locations are integrated with small-area socio-economic data to evidence the demographic configuration and spatialities of sensor deserts across each city. We illustrate how the structural processes via which inequality is reinforced by smart agendas manifest as uneven social and spatial outcomes. In doing so, the paper opens up a new conceptual space in which to consider what it means (not) to count in the smart city, bringing a demographic perspective to critical debates about smart urbanisms.

17 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors present the following guidelines for the evaluation of the performance of a project in the field of Ciencia e Tecnologia (CEECIND):
Abstract: Ministerio da Educacao e Ciencia > Fundacao para a Ciencia e a Tecnologia ‐ CEECIND/03528/2018 ‐ PTDC/ART‐PER/32417/2017.

15 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Patchin et al. as discussed by the authors argue that in the global politics of public and reproductive health, relatively new neoliberal health metrics have joined up with eugenicist impulses to value life according to future economic contributions.
Abstract: Correspondence Paige Marie Patchin Email: Paige.patchin@geog.ubc.ca Feminist work on population governance has tracked its racial dynamics, its varied attempts to expunge the poor from the future, and its violent wresting of control over reproduction away from women. Attention has recently turned to “economised” understandings of possible and proto‐life that take the aggregate reproductivity of certain groups of women and girls as a means of shaping economic futures, which emerged as the dominant form of population governance during the Cold War. Underexplored in this incisive body of work, however, is the relationship between the reproductive body and social reproduction. This paper advances feminist work on adjudications of life worth in government policy and scientific expertise, and critical political economic work on global health governance, by exploring experiments in family planning. I do this through a discussion of the Zika virus, the recent re‐emergence of which was framed as an economic problem: experts “priced” a single case of microcephaly at US$10 million or more across a lifetime. Specifically, I examine a programme of contraceptive provision to women in Puerto Rico as part of the public health emergency, which I show to have possible eugenic effects. I argue that in the global politics of public and reproductive health, relatively new neoliberal health metrics have joined up with eugenicist impulses to value life according to future economic contributions. Such valuations of life focalise the reproductive body while abandoning the social reproductive body. The relationship between reproductive labour and social reproduction warrants further scrutiny, for as we careen through uncertain ecological futures, and as discourses about limited Earth for humans amid environmental crisis and limited funding for future children thicken, the reproductivity of certain women and girls is being tinkered with by experts, governments, and private institutions in new ways.

15 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors combine the political economy of financialisation with feminist care ethics and sociocultural geographies of home to explain why and how real estate is converted into liquid financial assets, and expose the implications for embedded relationships.
Abstract: Funding information Research Councils UK > Economic and Social Research Council ES/J500124/1. This paper combines the political economy of financialisation with feminist care ethics and sociocultural geographies of home. Together, these perspectives explain why and how real estate is converted into liquid financial assets, and expose the implications for embedded relationships. The argument is developed through a case study of UK care homes, with particular attention to the role of real estate investment trusts. Investors in care companies have sought to render their real estate assets more calculable and profitable, by standardising the assets themselves into hotel‐like spaces. In effect, the work of translating between liquid finance and particular homes is transferred – from investors to those creating relationships in hotel‐like spaces. Yet the fundamental illiquidity of residents, relationships, and “home” constrain and destabilise financialisation. The paper concludes by discussing the implications of “liquid home” for economic, urban, and welfare geographies, and recommends that policy pay more attention to the financing of spaces for care.


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, a genealogical mode of analysis for understanding the ascription of causal and practical responsibility to urban processes is developed through a case study of the revival of interest in the concept of wicked problems.
Abstract: Across multiple academic disciplines and fields of policy, cities are now ascribed wide-ranging task responsibility for addressing a wide range of global issues. This paper elaborates a genealogical mode of analysis for understanding the ascription of causal and practical responsibility to urban processes. This analysis is developed through a case study of the revival of interest in the concept of wicked problems. The paper pinpoints aspects of the original account of wicked problems that are crucial to appreciating the significance now played by this concept in discourses of metrophilia. The focus is on the specific sense of ‘wickedness’ outlined in this original account. The career of the wicked problems idea is reconstructed, with an emphasis on different views of expertise and how these are related to the changing status of the city in recent accounts of wicked problems. The paper identifies differences and similarities between the two A cc ep te d A rt ic le




Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A surprising aspect in England’s neighbourhood transitions is revealed: multi-ethnic neighbourhoods are highly stable, and increasingly so, and the demographic and housing dynamics associated with this stability are explored.
Abstract: This paper analyses the most ethnically diverse spaces in England. We define multi-ethnic neighbourhoods as spaces where no one group is in a majority and at least five ethnic groups have representation. Around 4% of all English neighbourhoods (Lower Layer Super Output Areas) met these criteria in 2011. Often mislabelled as "segregated" spaces, the growth of ethnically diverse neighbourhoods helps benchmark increased inter-ethnic contact, yet we know very little about their spatial extent and the dynamics of their expansion. We use Census data for 1991, 2001, and 2011 to consider how neighbourhood-level diversity has changed during a period of substantial increase in ethnic diversity at the national scale. To what extent did these highly diverse areas grow, and what is the geography of that growth? Which types of areas did these neighbourhoods transition from? For example, were multi-ethnic neighbourhoods formerly low or moderately diverse, and which groups dominated these locales? We also consider if multi-ethnic neighbourhoods are here to stay, or if they are compositionally unstable. We reveal a surprising aspect in England's neighbourhood transitions: multi-ethnic neighbourhoods are highly stable, and increasingly so. Some 88% of neighbourhoods that were multi-ethnic in 1991 retained their high-diversity status in 2001, while over 95% of 2001 multi-ethnic neighbourhoods remained highly diverse by 2011. This is a different story to that of the USA, where high-diversity neighbourhoods have received more scholarly attention, and where these neighbourhoods have high attrition rates, functioning as stepping stones to another type of space. We explore the demographic and housing dynamics associated with this stability.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examine how certain African countries have become testbeds for new forms of drone infrastructure and regulation, driven by the overlapping interests of governments, drone operators, and international development agencies.
Abstract: In this paper we examine how certain African countries have become testbeds for new forms of drone infrastructure and regulation, driven by the overlapping interests of governments, drone operators, and international development agencies. In particular we explore the factors that have led to the development of an advanced medical delivery network in Rwanda and contrast that with the closing down of airspace for drones in Tanzania. The paper makes a distinctive contribution to research on the ongoing constitution and enclosure of dronespace as a sphere of commercial and governmental activity.





Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, a move from an analysis of energy transitions with Chinese characteristics to alternative thinking on energy transitions truly rooted in Chinese epistemological and philosophical constructs is proposed, which enables a culture-led reading of China's energy transitions, thus responding to calls for transition theories from elsewhere.
Abstract: Transformations of the energy system are unfolding in China at an unprecedented scale and pace. The dynamics of China's energy transitions impact global trends of energy decarbonisation. Transition theories within the Anglophone academic tradition have been used to examine this process, but they tend to misrepresent the social, cultural, and political structures that shape energy transitions in China. This paper proposes a move from an analysis of energy transitions “with Chinese characteristics” to alternative thinking on energy transitions truly rooted in Chinese epistemological and philosophical constructs. The correlative epistemology refers to a Chinese tradition of social studies that describes the cosmos as a structured order of relations (guanxi). This tradition sees guanxi as the fundamental constituent of Chinese society. Such a relational focus enables a culture-led reading of China's energy transitions, thus responding to calls for transition theories “from elsewhere.” In particular, correlative interpretations of innovation and transition processes in China frame energy transitions within broader societal transformations, define the operation of transition governance, and reveal that pre-existing guanxi networks shape the activities of actors in transition processes.


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is demonstrated how the “local problem” of governing health and care amid austerity politics was rearticulated as a "global opportunity" to forge new connections between place, health, and economy.
Abstract: Health and care policy is increasingly promoted within visions of the competitive city‐region. This paper examines the importance of policy boosterism within the political construction of city‐regions in the context of English devolution. Based on a two‐year case study of health and social care devolution in Greater Manchester, England, we trace the relational and territorial geographies of policy across and through new “devolved” city‐regional arrangements. Contributing to geographical debates on policy assemblages and city‐regionalism, we advance a conceptual framework linking crisis and opportunity, emulation and exceptionalism, and evidence and experimentation. The paper makes two key contributions. First, we argue health and care policy is increasingly drawn towards the logic of global competitiveness without being wholly defined by neoliberal political agendas. Fostering transnational policy networks helped embed global “best practice” policies while simultaneously hailing Greater Manchester as a place beyond compare. Second, we caution against positioning the city‐region solely at the receiving end of devolutionary austerity. Rather, we illustrate how the urgency of devolution was conditioned by crisis, yet concomitantly framed as a unique opportunity by the local state harnessing policy to negotiate a more fluid politics of scale. In doing so, the paper demonstrates how attempts to resolve the “local problem” of governing health and care under austerity were rearticulated as a “global opportunity” to forge new connections between place, health, and economy. Consequently, we foreground the multiple tensions and contradictions accumulating through turning to health and care to push Greater Manchester further, faster. The paper concludes by asking what the present crisis might mean for city‐regions in good health and turbulent times.




Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors report household questionnaire survey results on vulnerability and resilience to flooding from one of the largest and most representative samples (n = 593) of households up to 12 years after they were flooded, and provide detailed analysis of social differentiation in long-term flood impacts.
Abstract: Funding information Scottish Executive This paper reports household questionnaire survey results on vulnerability and resilience to flooding from one of the largest and most representative samples (n = 593) of households up to 12 years after they were flooded, and is one of the first to provide detailed analysis of social differentiation in long‐term flood impacts. A novel finding is that social differentiation in flood impacts is relatively small soon after a flood, but widens over time, with socially disadvantaged groups displaying less recovery. The patterns of social differentiation in vulnerability and resilience to flooding differ markedly according to the type and timescale of the impact, with some normally socially advantaged groups (e.g., professionals and homeowners) being most vulnerable to short‐term impacts. Consistent with some existing studies, we found that older residents (age 70+) have greater resilience to flood impacts, although our sample may not capture the frailest individuals. As in previous research, low income is linked to lower resilience, particularly in the long term. We find that prior experience of flooding, despite enhancing preparedness, overall erodes rather than enhances resilience to flooding. Flood warnings are effective at reducing vulnerability to short‐term impacts. Underlying influences on resilience to natural disasters are complex and may only be revealed by multivariate analysis and not always be evident in simple observed patterns. The paper concludes that vulnerability and resilience to flooding are sensitive to financial resources, institutional support (chiefly from a landlord), and capacity to deal with disruption (chiefly time availability, which is low among professionals and high among retired people). An implication of these findings is that existing indices of flood vulnerability that use multiple measures of social deprivation should be used with caution, as not all conventional aspects of social deprivation are necessarily associated with greater vulnerability to flood impacts.