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Title: Beyond place branding? : the emergence of place reputation : a comparative study of Newcastle, Gateshead, Hull and Bristol
Author: Bell, Fraser
ISNI:       0000 0004 6423 683X
Awarding Body: Newcastle University
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2016
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While it has become widespread in an international context, place branding has reached an impasse in theory and policy alike as several weaknesses have been uncovered: i) places are too complicated to be branded; ii) place brands have lacked breadth in terms of their application; iii) place brands have proved homogenous and indistinctive and; iv) the outcomes and impacts of place brands have proved difficult to measure. This project examines the proposition that the conceptualisation of place branding can be repositioned as part of a more comprehensive and rounded notion of place reputation. Adapting ideas of personal and corporate reputation, an alternative is proposed that argues that places can improve their standing by constructing and accumulating reputational capital with various audiences. The specific aims of the study are: i) to engage critically with the place branding literature and develop a new conceptual and theoretical basis for the emergent idea of place reputation; ii) to map and explain the different stakeholders involved and the way in which they shape the reputations of places and; iii) to compare the differing processes developed in the case-study cities used to form, shape and manage the reputations of cities and regions. The empirical work focuses on three in-depth case studies of second-tier cities in England: NewcastleGateshead, Hull and Bristol. This strengthens the tenuous connections made between reputation and place in the corporate and place branding literatures and transfers the idea of reputational capital to geographical entities, the thesis makes three contributions. First, place reputation and place branding are interrelated and there is a degree of complementarity between branding practices and place reputation. Second, place reputation is a relational concept and the reputations of places need to be understood in relation to particular audiences (e.g. internal, external), sector (e.g. public, private, civic) and/or domain (e.g. economy, culture). Third, the effectiveness of leadership in a city or region can be fundamental to the quality of the reputation of that specific place.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available