Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisorGrace, Debra
dc.contributor.advisorPerkins, Helen
dc.contributor.authorGreen, Amelia
dc.date.accessioned2018-09-06T01:53:45Z
dc.date.available2018-09-06T01:53:45Z
dc.date.issued2018-05
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10072/380292
dc.description.abstractEmbracing a social constructionist lens, this thesis explores the non-marketercontrolled aspects of city brand meaning co-creation as part of everyday, socio-cultural meaning-making. Specifically, initial theoretical exploration of this research gap conceptualises how socially constructed city elements, that offer some shared form and meaning to everyday urban experience (i.e. urban reminders, the arts and residential behaviour), also emit symbolic messages about the city in highly interrelated ways. For instance, as ‘residents’ move into and around the city, the ‘past’ is retold and new ‘artistic’ milieux replace dying ‘traditions’. Of course, groups seeking to ‘brand’ the city (e.g. governments, multinational corporations) take up and reformulate these elements to communicate more ‘desirable’ messages about the city. However, such intentional city branding efforts only further stimulate expansive and ongoing revision of what the city is thought to consist of and what is thought to take place (or have taken place) in the city. More broadly, this initial conceptual development of the thesis enables a more holistic view of the interconnected, multi-layered meaning-making processes enveloping city brands, with socially constructed city elements as a vital energising core. The more holistic view developed opens up a fresh critical lens for marketing scholars to grasp more of city brand meaning co-creation on both micro levels (e.g. social actors going about daily life) and macro levels (e.g. intentional branding and intersecting socio-cultural factors such as the media and historical contexts). Building on this foundational layer of contributions to city branding theory, the empirical stages of the thesis investigate how people interact with and reconstruct socially constructed city elements. Also grounded in a social constructionist understanding of knowledge, this empirical research question enlivens the actions and processes through which fundamental city elements continuously emerge and acquire meaningful boundaries as the focal research phenomena under investigation. The city of ‘Melbourne’ (‘Australia’) provides an overarching ‘unit of analysis’ within which to explore the research phenomena. However, the researcher sought to hear the voices of different social actors with unique relationships to this case ‘city’ and other socially constructed ‘places’. The researcher’s relationship with each of the 22 participants developed and evolved in different ways, ranging from one-off interview conversations to multiple sequential interviews (up to six in total). The interviews also included periods of ‘walking-and-talking’, ‘driving-and-talking’, ‘paper interview’ conversations, follow-up email correspondence, map-drawing exercises, photo elicitation and more formal member reflections. Hence, the versatility of the in-depth qualitative interview method afforded opportunities to co-create rich and diverse data and thus, further penetrate the research phenomena. Constructionist grounded theory methods guided the researcher’s approach to making sense of this variegated data. Crucially, these flexible yet systematic guidelines facilitated an intense, fine-grained and evolving data analysis approach tailored to developing increasingly abstract and comprehensive understandings of how people ‘interact’ with and simultaneously reconstruct city elements. Together, the conceptual, theoretical and empirical dimensions of the thesis advance marketing knowledge by enabling a more holistic view of city brand meaning-making processes also more attune to the complexities of everyday urban life. Delving more specifically into these latter entanglements, the empirical research findings illuminate the everyday meaning-making processes through which social actors meaningfully reify, animate and thus give symbolic ‘life’ to the city’s fundamental elements. These findings offer fresh and nuanced understandings of the particular processes through which people co-create city brand meaning by ‘doing things’ with social constructs. Additionally, the findings indicate that dominant assumptions about contemporary urban life frame (i.e. simplify and potentially constrain) everyday interactions with socially constructed city elements. Findings regarding dominant framing assumptions help to further tease out the roles of macro level socio-cultural factors (e.g. the media, cultural conventions, consumer culture) in more micro city brand meaning co-creation. Ensuing discussion of city branding as an intersecting macro factor that also ‘plays with’ assumptions about urban life enlivens debates around the ethical dimensions of the field. This discussion also probes into the notion and possibilities of more culturally resonant city elements that arouse dominant assumptions about how to ‘be’ in the city. More directly, with respect to advancing city branding practice, the thesis contributes additional momentum and constructive avenues for fostering common-ground between scholars and practitioners, facilitating city brand meaning co-creation and empowering more socio-culturally engaged practice. Further solidifying these contributions to marketing knowledge, the thesis opens up fresh research directions including opportunities to keep meaningful conversations about the city ‘alive’ by capacitating the socio-cultural resources of locally-rooted stakeholders (e.g. cafes, bloggers, microbreweries) who interactively stimulate social construction of fundamental city elements everyday.en_US
dc.languageEnglish
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherGriffith University
dc.publisher.placeBrisbane
dc.subject.keywordsSocio-culturalen_US
dc.subject.keywordsMeaning-makingen_US
dc.subject.keywordsUrban experienceen_US
dc.subject.keywordsCity brandsen_US
dc.subject.keywordsContemporary urban lifeen_US
dc.titleExploring City Brand Meaning-Making Processesen_US
dc.typeGriffith thesisen_US
gro.facultyGriffith Business Schoolen_US
gro.rights.copyrightThe author owns the copyright in this thesis, unless stated otherwise.
gro.hasfulltextFull Text
gro.thesis.degreelevelThesis (PhD Doctorate)en_US
gro.thesis.degreeprogramDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)en_US
gro.departmentDept of Marketingen_US
gro.griffith.authorGreen, Amelia J.


Files in this item

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record