Community governance, critical cosmopolitanism and urban change: observations from Taipei, Taiwan

Raco, Mike; Imrie, Rob and Lin, Wen-I. 2011. Community governance, critical cosmopolitanism and urban change: observations from Taipei, Taiwan. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 35(2), pp. 274-294. ISSN 0309-1317 [Article]

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Urban policy agendas are increasingly focused on the mobilization of active citizens and the propagation of cosmopolitan identities. This reflects a growing convergence betweencountries in urban policy thinking and practice, and greater uniformity in the terms and concepts that are used in different countries. This article draws on empirical evidence from Taipei, Taiwan to explore the form and character of changing urban policy agendasand their impacts on urban environments and communities. Taipei has undergoneradical social, economic and political change in recent decades, and in the 2000s policymakers readily adopted the discourses of cosmopolitanism and communityempowerment to legitimate major redevelopment projects. We develop the argument that this turn to cosmopolitanism lies at the heart of a paradox. On the one hand it is presented by policymakers as a radical, emancipatory programme that reflects wider shifts in the aspirations and expectations of increasingly active and globally oriented citizens. On the other hand, the term is used to underpin reactionary or conservativeagendas that seek to sustain and extend existing power relations. The article argues that greater academic and policy attention needs to be given to the socially situated nature of cosmopolitanism and its characterizations in diverse contexts.

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3 April 2011Published

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29 Nov 2013 09:05

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07 Jul 2017 09:37

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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