Presentation on theme: "First annual conference of the University Network of European Capitals of Culture TOWN AND GOWN Lucian Blaga University Sibiu, Romania."— Presentation transcript:
First annual conference of the University Network of European Capitals of Culture TOWN AND GOWN Lucian Blaga University Sibiu, Romania
LIVERPOOL08 What does it mean to the City's residents? Investigating the IDENTITY and BRANDING of Liverpool from the Perspective of some Liverpool Residents Jan Brown and John Phillips Hope Business School Liverpool Hope University
Presented by Professor Bill Chambers Pro Vice Chancellor External Affairs and Widening Participation Liverpool Hope University
Town and Gown Liverpool Hope University's contribution to the Liverpool08 Capital of Culture The function of academic research in the local community: to discern the future it is necessary to understand the past Research asked key questions about Liverpool's past: How did people form their identity – their self image and the image projected to others? How did people form the communities that gave them that identity?
METHODOLOGY Purposive sample not a representative or numerical sample of residents In depth semi-structured interviews 2-3 hours in homes: kitchens and lounges Loosely using `grounded theory` Narrative framework: listening to voices To point of saturation
The Residents N = 11 Women: known to one researcher Born pre 1950 59 – 97: community `elders` Inner city – by the river Mersey Faith group – church attenders Pre 1950 Working class Mixed race: birth and marriage
Aims To investigate whether the branding terms of `Capital of Culture` and `World class` can give Liverpool people a new identity and a new sense of community by Investigating and understanding how people in the past created identity and formed community.
Some Definitions Identity: image of self and the image communicated to others Place branding: the application of marketing and branding strategies and techniques to the economic, social and cultural development of places like cities and nations
A Capital of Culture Avowed purposes Economic regeneration Community building Building social capital
Ethics of Place branding Some questions: Can a brand be imposed upon the residents of a place, like a commodity, and without their consent: are people as well as the place branded? How can a consensus be formed about the nature of the brand; and how can it be enforced? How can a brand reflect social complexity and differences amongst people?
The role of Culture What is culture? Artefacts; exhibitions; concerts; festivals? Occasions that draw people together in community? What is the function of culture? Defining and preserving identity? Creating community: Only culture can do this?
Challenging the presumptions Can Capital of Culture status, and cultural artefacts really re-brand Liverpool? Can a new identity be imposed from the top on the residents below? How can people give their consent to the re- branding, and to any particular new brand or identity?
Liverpool: the original brand Seaport: gateway to the New World
Heritage and history `There is no town in England, London excepted, that can equal it` Defoe 1724 `The New York of Europe` Illustrated London News 1886 `One of the richest and most prosperous trading centres in the world` Muir 1907 `The pool of life` Carl Jung 1927
But… Mixed experiences: open and closed doors Incomers: keep themselves to themselves
COMMUNITY Not local – family based Some close neighbourhood communities But Social disintegration: bad parenting; children not in control; too much money and too few values Absence of community centres
CAPITAL OF CULTURE Pleased with award: potential But No jobs: contractors out of town/immigrant labour No lasting economic effects or investment Not community building: groups excluded from consultation; no ethnic diversity
not reaching ordinary - people life style shops - expensive apartments in dockland
Key findings IDENTITY FORMED BY MATRIARCHY NEIGHBOURHOOD RIVER ENERGY, EXCITEMENT, CURIOSITY REPLICATED IN OWN FAMILIES
CHANGING STRUCTURES SOCIAL ECONOMIC affluence mobility – move out and away end of a river full of ships (though a greater volume of trade than ever) Seaport as heritage
End of Community As formed in this manner Identity rooted in the past experience A disappearing memory
Re-branding Re-invention not restoration New brand New identity Not `heritage and history`
Final questions What is this new brand to be? How is it to be formed and transmitted? By whom? How are the people to assent to it and to express it?
Researcher details Contact: Jan Brown Hope Business School Hope Park, Liverpool L16 9JD, UK firstname.lastname@example.org 0044 151 291 3582 Invitation to work collaboratively on similar projects in Capital of Culture Cities