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DESIGN SPACES: AGGLOMERATION AND CREATIVITY IN BRITISH DESIGN AGENCIES

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Abstract:

ABSTRACT.

Although there is a growing body of research into the cultural and creative industries, little work has focused specifically upon on the geography of design and its role in regional economies. The relative neglect of the geography of the UK design industry is surprising given recent assertions about the sector's role in national economic competitiveness; its contribution to product innovation; and its importance as an urban regeneration resource. This paper explicitly considers the extent to which existing conceptualizations of agglomeration and creativity provide insights into the realm of design. Our discussion reflects upon recent surveys of the design sector and analyses current design organization membership data, both of which reveal an overwhelming concentration of design activities in London and the South East. Our analysis of the strategies, organization and practices of agencies in London reveals that a number of the key features associated with cultural industries in general are significantly less discernible within design.

Keywords: clusters; creative industries; design; networking; projects; regional economies

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0467.2008.00284.x

Affiliations: 1: School of Geography, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, United Kingdom., Email: s.reimer@soton.ac.uk 2: School of Geography, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, United Kingdom., Email: s.p.pinch@soton.ac.uk 3: School of Geography, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, United Kingdom., Email: p.j.sunley@soton.ac.uk

Publication date: June 1, 2008

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