23 November 2017

The RSA thanks to the Regions editors

The RSA members will receive the last issue of Regions before the end of this year. This will be the last issue of Regions as the members’ magazine in the print format. In 2018, the magazine moves to a new, more interactive online only format with a new team of editors – Eduardo Oliveira, Julie Tian Miao and Michael Taster.

Regional Studies Association

14 November 2017

Marca Territorial: A visão dos residentes sobre a sua cidade (Cidade da Guarda)

Marca Territorial: A visão dos residentes sobre a sua cidade (Cidade da Guarda) 

por Inês Patrícia Afonso Pais Dissertação para obtenção do grau de Mestre em Gestão Comercial pela Faculdade de Economia do Porto

Orientada por: Pedro Manuel dos Santos Quelhas Taumaturgo de Brito Setembro, 2017



All cities, within a country, try to be leaders through attributes that distinguish them from others. This way, all urban planners and decision-makers that affect the city try to promote their region in order to create a positive and attractive image. Marketing involved in a territorial planning and promotion strategy is a theme very discussed over the time, becoming in one of the answers to the challenges encountered by cities. One of the tools that can bring more value to a place, in a context of territorial marketing, is the use of a territorial brand, to create value in a level of image and positioning, both to an external and internal target. Residents are a segment with a lot of impact when talking about territorial brand, making one of the most important assets within a city. Before we talk about the power of attracting tourists, investors, business, among others, first, we need to evaluate the vision of its population in relation to its image, positioning, satisfaction and identification with the same. The residents of a city are often the mirror of what this city transmits to the outside. In conclusion, the study focuses on this same evaluation. The city in this study is localized in Beira Alta, interior of Portugal, more concretely in City’s Guarda.

Key-Words: Marketing, territorial marketing, territorial brand, residents, City’s Guarda

7 November 2017

Constructing regional advantage in branding the cross-border Euroregion Galicia–northern Portugal

Almost 9000 views

This paper employs a constructing regional advantage (CRA) approach in respect of examining the potential of joint branding strategies intended to position and give visibility to cross-border regions. The CRA concept is introduced here to improve understanding about the empirical significance of a branding strategy through cross-border relatedness, differentiated knowledge bases and policy platforms. It also aims to contribute to the academic debate on region branding. The case study focuses on the Euroregion composed of Galicia in north-west Spain and northern Portugal (GNP). Findings show that the combination of the key economic domains in which GNP excels will echo the cross-border advantage and strengthen a joint region branding strategy.

Constructing regional advantage in branding the cross-border Euroregion Galicia–northern Portugal: (2015). Constructing regional advantage in branding the cross-border Euroregion Galicia–northern Portugal. Regional Studies, Regional Science: Vol. 2, No. 1, pp. 341-349. doi: 10.1080/21681376.2015.1044020



10-13 JUNE 2018 (Tartu, Estonia) 


23 October 2017

Book review - Local government and urban governance in Europe

 Eduardo Oliveira (2017): Local government and urban governance in Europe, Planning Theory & Practice To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649357.2017.1385754

This edited volume promises a European-based overview of 60 years of reform in local government policies and the evolution of urban governance practices. The editors organize the book by focusing on three driving forces, which explain in part these wide-ranging and dynamic changes over time: (1) the transition to democracy in the mid-1970s and early 1990s, (2) the 2008 financial and economic crisis, and (3) the implementation of European Union (EU) urban policies.

12 October 2017

Creating the Rotterdam of Tomorrow | Rinske Brand | TEDxRotterdam

Interview with Eduardo Oliveira on Place Branding and Strategic Spatial Planning

Interview with Eduardo Oliveira on Place Branding and Strategic Spatial Planning

Eduardo Oliveira in this interview shares his experience of using place branding as a complementary instrument in strategic spatial planning. He also discusses the digital challenges of city and regional branding and the increasing role of social media in managing place reputation.  

Learn about:

  • Place branding as an instrument of strategic spatial planning;
  • What a valuable place brand is;
  • How local governance influences place branding;
  • Destination marketing through social media: including travellers as co-creators and opinion-makers;
  • Storytelling as a tool for place branding and examples of best practice;
  • How place branding contributes to sustainable regional development.
Read More

Reposted: "The planning of tourism on rural areas: the stakeholders` perceptions of the Boticas municipality (Northeastern Portugal)"

All credits:

"The planning of tourism on rural areas: the stakeholders` perceptions of the Boticas municipality (Northeastern Portugal)"

Most of the strategies developed to “save” rural territories in Europe have not been successful. One of the main problems has been the adoption of the top-down paradigm in the approach to the development of those territories. Portugal is a good example of the difficulty of adopting a bottom-up paradigm. The main objective of this paper is to present the perceptions of the local (including the residents) and regional stakeholders acting at Boticas towards the set of resources available and the development of the tourism industry. Boticas is a Northeastern Portuguese rural low density municipality. Capturing those perceptions, the research aims contributing to the establishment of a more integrated and innovative development strategy and, this way, a more able one in what concerns profiting from the potential associated to the growing of the tourism industry experienced lately by Portugal. The adoption of a mixed-method to proceed to the evaluation of the resources and capturing the perceptions on their tourist potential kept by the different stakeholders is suggested. Empirical data was collected through a survey applied to 373 of its residents and 25 interviews conducted to local and regional actors, supported by an inventory performed of the cultural resources and its capacity of being visited. We could conclude that residents tend to have a very positive perception towards tourism development and that their perceptions largely met the ones of other stakeholders.

Keywords: Rural Development; Tourism Planning; Perceptions; Resources; Tourist Attributes; Stakeholders.

Resumo de artigo publicado em European Countryside, Vol.9, Nº 3, 2017, págs. 504-525 [DOI: 10.1515/euco-2017-0030] (trabalho em co-autoria com Paula Remoaldo, Isabel Freitas, Olga Matos, Hélder Lopes, Maria Dolores Sánchez Fernández e Vitor Ribeiro).

3 October 2017

16th meeting: Adaptive Planning for Spatial Transformation

Supporting cities and regions in being responsive to opportunities and threats that are yet unknown is a key challenge for the discipline of planning. Planners look for ways to guide urban transformations on the one hand, and on the other to strengthen the adaptive capacity of cities and regions to unforeseen effects, consequences, and events. While planners and governance experts often indicate the importance of this tension, this conference contributes to the still rudimentary debate on how planning strategies can effectively assist in resolving this tension.
Framed within a Complexity Science perspective, academics and professionals are invited to:
  • DEVELOP analytical models and methods for mapping, comparing, simulating and evaluating, interactions between deliberate planning interventions and self-organised processes of change.
  • ANALYSE non-linear urban and regional transformations and emergent socio-spatial configurations.
  • IDENTIFY innovative and experimental planning strategies and projects that enable and constrain urban and regional adaptive evolution.
  • PROPOSE ways to resolve the tensions in urban and regional development frameworks between allowing for experimentation and securing equality, seizing opportunities and avoiding risks, and strengthening responsiveness and promoting desired change.
Contributions that are empirically grounded, whether based on qualitative methods, quantitative methods or mixed-methods, are particularly welcomed.
Set up of the conference
The workshop is hosted by the Department of Spatial Planning and Environment, Faculty of Spatial Sciences, University of Groningen, the Netherlands. The workshop will take place on May 23th-25th, 2018.
Next to a keynote, session presentations, and debates, it will also include a workshop on adaptive planning in Dutch planning practice. The conference will be free of charge.
Important dates
Deadline for submitting abstracts: 1st of November 2017
Date of notification of acceptance: 31st of November 2017
Deadline for submitting full papers: 15th of April 2018
Abstract submissions (see guidelines) can be emailed to complexity@rug.nl.
Tagged as :

29 September 2017

Determinants of foreign direct investment: an institutional perspective (MSc Thesis)

O Investimento Direto Estrangeiro (IDE) desempenha um papel, cada vez mais importante, nas economias do mundo inteiro. Os IDE permitem aos países de acolhimento, um aumento das trocas comerciais, a criação de pólos de competitividade, a transferência de tecnologia, a modernização de empresas locais e a criação de emprego. Reconhecendo estes efeitos, as economias em desenvolvimento implementam medidas de atratividade para beneficiar dos IDE. A qualidade das instituições torna-se um fator que explica as diferenças entre os países; uma melhor qualidade das instituições é um meio eficaz de atratividade de IDE. Este trabalho tem como objetivo analisar a relação das variáveis institucionais com o IDE. Com base no conjunto de mais de 200 países pelo período, aproximado, de 60 anos, encontraram-se evidências de uma relação causal entre essas variáveis e o IDE. Para tal, recorre-se ao uso do método dos dados em painel e os estimadores de efeitos fixos. Como variáveis explicativas foram escolhidos diversos fatores, mas no caso das institucionais selecionaram-se nomeadamente: corrupção, instabilidade política, peso do governo, a qualidade da moeda, regulação dos mercados, os direitos de propriedade e a liberdade do comércio. Os resultados apontam que o peso do governo é significativo, o que indica que as economias com menor peso do governo apresentam maior participação do IDE no PIB. O mesmo acontece com o acesso a uma moeda sã/segura e um menor peso da regulação dos mercados. No que diz respeito ao arcabouço legal acerca dos direitos de propriedade e a liberdade do comércio, estes não tendem a ter impacto sobre os IDE. E quanto ao sistema legal dos direitos de propriedade, os resultados sugerem uma certa indiferença por parte do investidor em IDE. 

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) plays an increasingly important role in economies around the world. FDI allows host countries to benefit from an increase in trade, the creation of centers of competitiveness, technology transfer, modernization of local businesses and jobs. Recognizing these effects, developing economies implement attractiveness measures to benefit from FDI. The quality of institutions becomes a factor that explains the differences between countries; a better quality of institutions is an effective mean of attracting FDI.This paper aims to analyze the relationship between institutional variables and FDI. Based on the set of more than 200 countries for the approximate period of 60 years, evidence of a causal relationship between these variables and FDI was found. For this purpose, the panel data method and the fixed effects estimators were used. As explanatory variables, a number of factors were chosen, but in the case of institutional ones, the following were selected: corruption, political instability, government size, quality of the money, market regulation, legal system and property rights, and freedom of trade. The results indicate that the government size is significant, which indicates that the economies with smaller governments show greater share of FDI in GDP. The same is true for access sound money and for lighter market regulation. With regard to the legal system and property rights and freedom of trade, they do not tend to have an impact on FDI. And, as for the legal system of property rights, the results suggest certain indifference from the foreign investors.


by Sylvia Ferreira dos Santos

25 September 2017

Post-Doc in land-change analysis

Post-Doc in land-change analysis

Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL
The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL is a part of the ETH domain. Approximately 500 people work on the sustainable use and protection of the environment and on the handling of natural hazards.

The Research Unit Landscape Dynamics studies patterns, causes and processes of landscape change. The ERC-project CONCUR develops and tests a theoretical model on how planning contributes to the development of urban regions. For this, WSL is offering a position starting in February 2018 as a
Post-Doc in land-change analysis
You will test for the urban region of Austin, TX (USA) the theoretical model and tools currently designed by the CONCUR team. This test will be conducted in collaboration with testing efforts in two other areas. Specifically, you will conduct expert interviews, analyze planning documents and perform spatial analyses in GIS to perform an in-depth case study of the past two decades of change in land use and land cover, driving forces, and regional planning. Furthermore you will develop a spatially explicit model (for example with CLUE-S or Sleuth) of regional land-change. You will estimate the contribution of planning and its actors to land change in the Austin TX region. In collaboration with the CONCUR team you will integrate the findings into an overall evaluation on how planning contributes to the development of urban regions.
You have a PhD degree in geography, environmental sciences, spatial planning or equivalent. Significant experience in land-change modelling, spatial analysis, qualitative research methods, GIS and R is expected. Familiarity with US-American planning is a plus. You are expected to spend some time for field work in Austin TX. You have very good English skills and experiences in publishing. You are communicative and very interested in developing innovative, problem-oriented and pragmatic solutions.
Please send your complete application to Sabine Hirt, Human Resources WSL. Anna Hersperger, anna.hersperger@wsl.ch, will be happy to answer any questions or offer further information on the position. The WSL strives to increase the proportion of women in its employment, which is why qualified women are particularly called upon to apply for this position.

Arcplan invites authors interested in the exploration of urban design and planning in the Arab world

Arcplan invites authors interested in the exploration of urban design and planning in the Arab world to submit original works that include both empirical and theoretical research, although cross-boundary regional research is simultaneously appreciated. Arcplan also encourages ‘controversial’ discussions that raises lead threads on contemporary development challenges. For more details please visit Arcplan website http://goo.gl/cjy43U #ArcPlan #open_access #journal #arab_world #planning #urban_design #architecture #architects #design

Xosé Henrique Vázquez analiza o estado da innovación en Galicia

21 September 2017

Post doctoral researcher project Branding as new governance tool (1,0 FTE, 4 years)

At the department of Public Administration and Sociology  there is a vacancy for a post doc working on the field of new forms of governance especially branding in governance processes. The post doc will be employed for 4 years and be financed by two grants. First of all through a grant in the Vital Cities program of the Erasmus University and secondly additional founding will be secured through the EU funded research project Tropico. International research activities (possibly case studies but maybe also other research activities like experiments) are very likely to be part of the research.
Participating in two projects
Within the vital cities project the post doc will work on the theme branding as new governance tool to include citizens to tackle social problems. Brands, especially when created and sustained interactively, can create identity and a sense of belonging but also motivate other actors to co-operate in tackling social problems. In this research we explore the possibilities of branding for creating identity, enhancing participation and strengthening resilience by several research methods :
-  case studies to explore the participation effect of branding
-  Experiments to test the identity forming of branding
-  Q sort research to test stakeholders perceptions on branding.
Valorization is secured by reaching out to the municipality of Rotterdam and connecting it to the new Faculty’s incubator GovernEUR.
The EU (2020) TROPICO project (Transforming into Open, Innovative and Collaborative Governments) aims to comparatively examine how public administrations are transformed to enhance collaboration in policy design and service delivery, advancing the participation of public, private and societal actors. It analyses collaboration in and by governments, with a special emphasis on the use of information and communication technologies (ICT), and its consequences. The post doc will especially work on the work packages that are aimed at Public Private Partnerships and democratic legitimacy (case studies and Qualitative Comparative analysis will be employed).
The post doc will work closely with other researchers on the two projects and be part of a larger research team that jointly works on research and research outputs. For the TROPICO research the post doc will cooperate with various researchers in other countries.
Finally, the postdoc will assist in teaching for the master programme.


New report summerises the knowledge and knowledge gaps on plastics in Nordic marine species


How is ecosystem services included in policy?

18 September 2017

The Place Dimension of Cities & Regions: Governance, Industrial Development & Sustainability

Plenary SpeakersProfessor Lisa de Propris, University of Birmingham, UKDr. Christian Ketels, Harvard Business School, USAMoray Gilland, European Commission, BelgiumProfessor Karen Chapple, University of California, Berkeley, USAJon Potter, OECD, FranceProfessor David Bailey, Aston University, UK
Dr. Phil Tomlinson, University of Bath, UKPlenary ChairsMark Tewdwr-Jones, Newcastle University, UK
Sally Hardy, Regional Studies Association, UK
Sarah Ayres, University of Bristol, UK
Joan Fitzgerald, Northeastern University, USA
Submission & Registration Details RSA members benefit from a reduced members rate and the non-members rate will include RSA membership for 1 year.
Please submit your abstract (250 words) through the Regional Studies Association
conference portal by 21st September 2017. Please click here to see the Call for Papers, to read more about the conference please click here. Proposals will be considered by the Conference Programme Committee against the criteria of originality and interest, subject balance and geographical spread.

You may also wish to attend the annual RSA President’s Event (awards ceremony & dinner) which is taking place on 16th November (the evening of the first day of the conference) in London. Places are limited and pre-registration is essential.

6 September 2017

Six farmers shot dead over land rights battle in Peru

Six farmers have been shot dead by a criminal gang who wanted to seize their farms to muscle in on the lucrative palm oil trade, according to indigenous Amazon leaders in Peru.
Local leaders in the central Amazon region of Ucayali say the victims were targeted last Friday because they had refused to give up their land.
A police report seen by the Guardian details how the farmers’ bodies were found early on Saturday dumped in a stream near the Bajo Rayal hamlet where the men had lived.

1 September 2017

Governance Networks in the Public Sector

ONLINE NOW: Oliveira, E. (2017) Book Review - Governance Networks in the Public Sector.
Governance, 30(4): 732.734.

21 August 2017

The main themes of the project relate to the role of indigenous peoples common land rights and how they impact on deforestation in the Argentinean Chaco in the province of Salta


This project is funded through the European Research Council Consolidator Grant Scheme, and runs over a five-year period from November 2016 until October 2021. The acronym stands for Indigenous Communities, Land Use and tropical Deforestation (INCLUDE).
Tropical deforestation is an important contributor to climate change, through the release of significant amounts of carbon in the atmosphere. The main proximate cause of deforestation is agricultural expansion, followed by resource extraction. This project will look at the problem of deforestation in the Argentinean dry Chaco in the province of Salta (the Chaco Saltenho). The Chaco Saltenho, part of the Great American Chaco (the second largest tropical forest in the American continent after the Amazon), experiences one of the fastest deforestation rates in the world (on average about 2 football fields per minute over 1970-2015), represents an important agricultural frontier (with over 6 million ha of forest left) and hosts significant ethnic and cultural diversity, including both ‘criollos’ (small scale livestock farmers of European descent) and indigenous peoples (IPs). The project, lasting 5 years, is structured around the following macro-objectives (work packages)

The Impact of Strategic Spatial Plans on Land Change in Urban Regions: Debating Plan-Making and Plan-Implementation

General description:
Within the CONCUR project ‘From plans to land change: how strategic spatial planning contributes to the development of urban regions’ the expert workshop ‘The Impact of Strategic Spatial Plans on Land Change in Urban Regions: Debating Plan Making and Plan Implementation’ (9th – 10thNovember) includes public lectures on Thursday, 9th November (09:00-15:00) by eight international experts. These experts will lecture on issues concerning strategic spatial planning, territorial governance and land-change science (further information on the order of the presentations will be soon available).
9:00 - 12:30
Public lectures by
· Frank Moulaert, The Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
· Gertrud Jørgensen, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
· Raine Mäntysalo, Aalto University, Finland
· Jasper van Vliet, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands
· Peter Schmitt, Stockholm University, Sweden
· Peter Austin, City of Oslo, Norway
· Thomas Houet, University Rennes, France
· Peter Verburg, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands
13:45 - 15:00
Public lectures by
· CONCUR project team on the aims of the project and the preliminary theoretical model.
The final program will be soon available.
Please check the CONCUR project webpage regularly.
We look forward to seeing you.

8 August 2017

Call for Paper: "Planning and Ideology", Journal "Planning Theory"

Call for Paper: "Planning and Ideology", Journal "Planning Theory" The journal "Planning Theory" has launched a call for papers for a special issue on ideology and planning. Edited by Edward Shepherd, Andy Inch and Tim Marshall, this special issue starts from the premise that the significant analytical potential of the concept of ideology for planning thinking can only be realised if its role is brought to the fore of analysis. However, ideology has rarely been subject to sustained critical reflection within planning and there have been very few attempts to provide an overview of this terrain or to identify potential new directions for scholarship. The call invites contributions exploring the intersections of planning thought and practice with various approaches to ideology, seeking to bring together a range of papers that use the concept to cast light on different facets of the complex relationships between planning, politics and society. Deadline for paper submission is 20th of October, 2017. http://journals.sagepub.com/home/plt

18 July 2017

Special issue: Power/Knowledge in Natural Resource Management

Content of the special issue:
Power/Knowledge in Natural Resource Management

The will to knowledge: natural resource management and power/knowledge dynamics
Kristof Van Assche, Raoul Beunen & Martijn Duineveld

Partnerships for development in the extractive sector: protecting subterranean interests?
Javier Arellano-Yanguas & María del Pilar Bernal-Gómez

Small-scale fisheries within maritime spatial planning: knowledge integration and power
Svein Jentoft

Natural capital and the political economy of wetland governance in Alberta
Marian Weber, Naomi Krogman, Lee Foote & Rebecca Rooney

Governing the water user: experiences from Mexico
Edwin Rap & Philippus Wester

Power/knowledge and natural resource management: Foucaultian foundations in the analysis of adaptive governance
Kristof Van Assche, Raoul Beunen , Martijn Duineveld & Monica Gruezmacher

Materiality in natural resource management: a systems theory view
Vladislav Valentinov

Place Branding and Marketing

The great moment when you open a newly published book and you have a chapter in it.

Handbook on Place Branding and Marketing


Chapter 2: A strategic spatial planning approach to regional branding: challenges and opportunities


in memory of Prof. Sir Gregory Ashworth.

Impact of planning mandates on local plans: a multi-method assessment

Original Articles "Impact of planning mandates on local plans: a multi-method assessment" by Sophie C. Rudolf, Simona R. Grădinaru & Anna M. Hersperger Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, Birmensdorf, Zürich, Switzerland