City Branding - How Cities Compete in the 21st Century

Increasingly, cities and urban regions compete with other places for attention, investment, visitors, shoppers, talent, events, and the like. Accelerated and intensified globalisation has lead to a situation where the main competition is no longer the city down the road or the town across the bay, but where competitors are places half a world away. And this global competition is no longer limited to the capital and big cities; it now directly affects all cities and concentrations of urban settlements. A city brand is its promise of value, a promise that needs to be kept.

Sicco van Gelder and Malcolm Allan have written this booklet to provide city stakeholders with an understanding of the latest insights in and learning about city branding. Its purpose is to inform, clarify and challenge people’s views about an area that is rife with confusion and mystification. City branding is a discipline that is developing fast and whose theoretical underpinnings have only been developed and put into full practice in recent years. In other words, there is a lot to learn from the experiences out there and this book provides the reader with information about pitfalls, best practice and lessons learned. Obviously, a small book like this one will not do justice to city branding as an entire discipline. Please consider this book as a primer - a form of initiation into a fascinating and important topic that will undoubtedly feature on an increasing number of cities’ agendas in the near future. Download the booklet.