• Author Spotlight - Analysing different aspects and dimensions of rebranding, what is the efficacy of urban rebranding strategies?

    Posted by Huddersfield Press on 2021-05-11

The 7th 2021 edition of FIELDS is now available for open access download in our journal section! One of the students featured is Stacey Baratt, who researched rebranding strategies and urban architecture. We asked Stacey to talk to us about her research:

Over recent decades, the urban environment has transformed due to rapid global advancements in transportation and communication technology – known as ‘globalisation’. Whilst this phenomenon has benefitted many cities worldwide due to the increased accessibility of global interaction, some have experienced considerable socioeconomic decline resultant of the associated rising competitiveness. For instance, during the 1960s, businesses started outsourcing production in cheaper locations in the Far East which contributed to deindustrialisation of the UK and Western Europe. Additionally, improved transportation and cheaper abroad holidays alongside the attraction of new opportunities, subsequently instigated a decline in British seaside towns.

Rebranding strategies are fundamental to counteracting socioeconomic degeneration and improving regional and global urban competitiveness via strong brand identity. The article outlines three key approaches: market-led, top-down, and flagship rebranding strategies, each with an accompanying iconic architectural precedent: Titanic Belfast, Northern Ireland; Turner Contemporary, Margate, England; and Guggenheim Bilbao, Spain. Addressing the reasons for deterioration and investigating these distinctive rebranding strategies enable their architectural significance and overall efficacy to be critically assessed. Ultimately, it is concluded that top-down rebranding strategies are the most effective.

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