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Title: 'Post-crisis' urban cultural policy in Bristol : the role of brokering agents in urban authority engagements with alternative culture
Author: Hagan, Ciaran
ISNI:       0000 0004 6056 8327
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis examines the extent to which the context of the 'post-crisis city' (Tonkiss 2013) and 'austerity urbanism' (Peck, 2012) has given prominence to a particular iteration of the creative city paradigm. This 'alternative creative city' iteration makes a virtue of alternative culture, that is, the sub- and counter-cultural activities that have largely been ignored or marginalised in 'mainstream' urban cultural policy. The thesis explores how this iteration has taken shape in the UK city of Bristol in recent years. It finds that the 2008 financial crisis and the subsequent austerity context has generated urban and political-economic conditions that are in part conducive, and at other times contradictory, to the rise of the 'alternative creative city'. In doing so, it highlights other important and contingent factors that have also played a role in the emergence of this iteration in Bristol. The thesis shows that the 'alternative creative city' is not only associated with a celebration of groups and activities that were once marginalised by urban authorities, but also novel and substantive forms of engagement between urban authorities and alternative culture. These engagements are examined through two case studies to elucidate how they take shape and, crucially, who is involved in this process. The analysis reveals a more heterogeneous array of actors involved in assembling the creative city than currently appreciated in the wider urban cultural policy literature. In particular, the thesis argues that urban geography research can benefit from a more actor-centred account that affords greater agency to 'cultural actors' in the urban cultural policy-making process. By turning the analytical spotlight on, to date, an underestimated set of agents, and the work they do, it argues that the 'alternative creative city' is not only associated with novel engagements, but also opportunities for new sets of actors to shape urban policies.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available