The European Creative Class – theory and reality

The creative class. Could be said that the term is Richard Florida‘s brain child. He put forward the theory that there is a new class in the wide pool of the workforce: the creatives. In this case, the creative class points to the multitude of professionals that are involved in: the creative industries (obviously), science, research and development, high-tech industries. In short, the majority of knowledge based industries, which rely on the highly educated and skilled individuals, and their ability to create (I use the term loosely, as it…

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Ultimate Guide to Online Spatial Data Sources

Spatial planning research is somewhat a murky field of research, and data available online is sometimes hard to obtain, as you have to navigate around search engines and complicated sites. For some time now I meant to put together a list of spatial data sources and tools I use when doing research, which I gathered along the years. The list below is not exhaustive by any means, however these are the main sources where you can obtain reliable EU and world data free of charge. I am not going to…

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Nations, regions, identity - a federal perspective

This is a guest post from Horațiu Ferchiu. He is a planning professional and independent researcher with interests spanning from strategic planning, governance, and policy to politics, and federal Europe. He is currently brainstorming his future PhD subject around federalism and development. This article sums up some of his preliminary findings and thoughts, and is the first in a series of three articles meant to tie federalism and spatial planning together. While this might seem like an intensely political debate, the current European economic situation forces us to look into…

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6 reasons for mixing politics with spatial planning and development

Politics – one of the reasons the world goes round, or is it just a result of the world going round? Not really an easy question. One thing that anyone agrees upon though, is that politics (good or bad, doesn’t really matter) can make or brake economies (whatever the level: global, European, national, local, personal), and with these any chance of future spatial development. Politics, in our context, are not a result of social relations, but the compound formed by social relations which involve power and authority, and the use…

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European identity and common values

Cultural values and language define two of the most important characteristics of territorially defined nations or ethnically defined groups. The recent buzz around the EU blogosphere revealed certain cultural and language issues that limit the way in which people react and interact (1, 2, 3). By similarity, this is not different in the spatial planning field, especially considering that policy measures are usually filtered through the past,  present and future visions resulted from cultural and political frameworks. Protesilaos Stavrou actually pointed towards an important issue of the European project. That…

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