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Essay

Access_open In de ban van stadsgoeroes?

Herijking van inspiratiebronnen voor stadsbestuurders

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 2 2020
Auteurs Prof. dr. Nico Nelissen en Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The urbanisation of society is a well-known fact. It is perhaps less well known that this process is accompanied by the emergence of ‘city gurus’. By this, the authors mean advisers, scientists and other authors who have an international influence on the thinking and actions of city administrators and other urban policymakers. City administrators nowadays often find their intellectual inspiration from ‘contemporary city gurus’. They are usually not public administration experts; instead they come from the fields of urban geography, urban economics, or urban sociology. Their ideas do however resonate in administrative practice. The questions that the popularity of contemporary city gurus raise are: is this a hype or is it really about thoughts that have a lasting impact on ‘urban development’ and city management? Which city gurus are we actually talking about? There are several of them, but in this essay the authors highlight a few that can be counted among the favourite speakers among the ‘science and advisor conference goers’ in recent years: Richard Florida, Bruce Katz, Richard Sennett, Benjamin Barber and Jeb Brugmann. The city gurus ask us to have an eye for the city. But the authors of this essay believe that that also means that we must be aware of differences, because every city and every city dweller is different, and that requires an interpretation of the ‘city of difference’. The popularity of the city leads to an increase in those differences and they present us with various considerations and management issues.


Prof. dr. Nico Nelissen
Prof. dr. N.J.M. Nelissen is emeritus hoogleraar aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, redactielid en oud-hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is onderzoeker, adviseur en universitair docent aan de Technische Universiteit Delft bij de faculteit Bouwkunde. Hij houdt zich bezig met urban governance & leadership, grote iconische stadsprojecten, stedelijke gebiedstransformaties, place branding en place making.
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