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Crisis and Reorganization in Urban Dynamics: The Barcelona Case Study

Listed author(s):
  • Balanzó, Rafael de

    (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC))

  • Rodríguez-Planas, Núria

    ()

    (Queens College, CUNY)

Registered author(s):

    We use the adaptive cycle theory to improve our understanding of cycles of urban change in the city of Barcelona from 1953 to present. Most specifically, we explore the vulnerabilities and windows of opportunity these cycles for change introduced in the release (Ω) and reorganization (α) phases. In the two recurring cycles of urban change analyzed (before and after 1979), we observe two complementary loops. During the front-loop, financial and natural resources are efficiently exploited by homogenous dominant groups (private developers, the bourgeoisie, politicians or technocrats) with the objective to promote capital accumulation based on private (or private-public partnership) investments. In contrast, the back-loop emerges from Barcelona's heterogeneous urban social movements (neighborhood associations, activists, squatters, cooperatives and NGOs), whose objectives are diverse but converge in their discontent with the status-quo of conservation (the K phase) and their desire for a "common good" that includes social justice, social cohesion, participatory governance, and wellbeing for all. The heterogeneity of these social networks (shadow groups) fosters learning and social innovation and gives them the flexibility that the front-loop's dominant groups lack to trigger change not only within but also across spatial scale (local community-based, neighborhood, city) and time dimensions, promoting a cross-scale process of revolt and stabilization, also known as Panarchy.

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    Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 10748.

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    Length: 38 pages
    Date of creation: Apr 2017
    Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10748
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    1. Libertad Gonzalez & Francesc Ortega, 2013. "Immigration And Housing Booms: Evidence From Spain," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 37-59, 02.
    2. Cristina Fernández & Carolina Ortega, 2008. "Labor market assimilation of immigrants in Spain: employment at the expense of bad job-matches?," Spanish Economic Review, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 83-107, June.
    3. Núria Rodríguez-Planas & Natalia Nollenberger, 2016. "Labor market integration of new immigrants in Spain," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-15, December.
    4. Alcobendas, Miguel Angel & Rodríguez-Planas, Núria & Vegas, Raquel, 2012. "Wage and Occupational Assimilation by Skill Level," IZA Discussion Papers 6543, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Núria Rodríguez-Planas, 2012. "Wage and occupational assimilation by skill level: migration policy lessons from Spain," IZA Journal of European Labor Studies, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 1(1), pages 1-20, December.
    6. Antònia Casellas & Montserrat Pallares-Barbera, 2009. "Public-sector Intervention in Embodying the New Economy in Inner Urban Areas: The Barcelona Experience," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 46(5-6), pages 1137-1155, May.
    7. Valeria Paul & Matthew Tonts, 2005. "Containing Urban Sprawl: Trends in Land Use and Spatial Planning in the Metropolitan Region of Barcelona," Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35.
    8. Fernando Diaz Orueta & Susan S. Fainstein, 2008. "The New Mega-Projects: Genesis and Impacts," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(4), pages 759-767, December.
    9. Dustin L. Herrmann & William D. Shuster & Audrey L. Mayer & Ahjond S. Garmestani, 2016. "Sustainability for Shrinking Cities," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(9), pages 1-9, September.
    10. González, Libertad & Ortega, Francesc, 2011. "How do very open economies adjust to large immigration flows? Evidence from Spanish regions," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 57-70, January.
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