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On the waterfront: studying the development of residences and work-places at Norra Älvstranden, Gothenburg, Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1332-2573
2014 (English)In: Local Economy, ISSN 0269-0942, E-ISSN 1470-9325, Vol. 29, no 4-5, 429-452 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Following economic restructuring, waterfront redevelopment emerges as a post-industrial option for struggling cities and regions that will boost economic growth. If functioning according to plan, publicly initiated and privately executed waterfront redevelopment will attract educated and high-income earning residents as it simultaneously transforms derelict industrial grounds into residential areas and science parks. The recent financial crisis of 2008 has seen severe turbulence in the urban economy resulting in for example foreclosures and drops in real-estate value. Drawn on this background, the aim of this paper is to shed light on whether a specific place-based activity: the establishment of a redeveloped waterfront in Gothenburg, Sweden facilitating residences and workplaces, has attracted human capital in the form of residents and workers often termed ‘talented’ and ‘creative’. This paper uses a unique longitudinal micro database (GILDA) containing information on residence, work, age etc. covering the entire Swedish population between the years 1990 and 2008 and focuses on flows of in- and out-migration of two human capital sub-groups; the arts-educated bohemians and the engineering-educated consultants. Results show that the waterfront attracts resident consultants and not bohemians, while the growth of workplaces stagnate and decline following the global economic recession of 2008. The paper contributes to knowledge on the complexity of redevelopment and how difficult it is to manage this process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2014. Vol. 29, no 4-5, 429-452 p.
Keyword [en]
Waterfront, longitudinal micro database, economic restructuring, work-place, residence, human capital
National Category
Business Administration Economic Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-87764DOI: 10.1177/0269094214533649ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84904310724OAI: diva2:711044
Available from: 2014-04-09 Created: 2014-04-09 Last updated: 2015-04-20Bibliographically approved

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