The University of Cumbria presents a diverse range of public lectures held at our Ambleside campus. The series provides an opportunity for Professors at the University of Cumbria to share insights into their work and research and its impact on society.
Speaker: Prof Frank Peck, Professor of Regional Economic Development
Place - a new paradigm in regional and local development?
In recent years, the concept of “place” has been introduced into the lexicon of regional development. Popularised at the time of the “localism” debate in the UK, there has been a tendency for this term to be reduced to refer to spatial scale; “place” is a territorial subdivision that equates to “sub-region” or “locality”. There are more nuanced definitions, however, including those associated with the Smart Specialisation debate in European policy where “place-based” approaches to regional development are defined as “bottom-up” development processes based on effective assessment of local assets and potential. In these terms, “place” is not just about spatial scale but also something to do with governance and decision-making. For others, how “place” is understood depends also on concepts of territorial development – the processes that generate spatial difference in economies and societies. This lecture explores the various ways in which the concept of “place’ has been applied in regional development and uses illustration from Cumbria to illustrate these various interpretations.