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From industrial district to 'Urban Village'? Manufacturing, money and consumption in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jane Pollard



Cities now occupy a central role in economic regeneration. Literature on such regeneration has focused on the supply side, neo-liberal leanings of projects, the centrality of cultural production and consumption, and the undemocratic, exclusionary geographies being produced through such regeneration schemes. This paper explores how urban regeneration strategies, premised on promoting cultural production and consumption, are being experienced by one of Birmingham's oldest manufacturing communities-its jewellers in the city's historic Jewellery Quarter. The aim is to investigate how this repackaging of the Jewellery Quarter, moulded by Birmingham's broader urban regeneration strategies, is affecting the material and social networks that constitute jewellery manufacturing. The repackaging of the Jewellery Quarter highlights some of the contrasting, and contradictory, conceptions of economic development competing for space in the West Midlands. The paper argues that the greater stress being given to the aestheticisation of the Quarter may ultimately undermine the economic (and social) bases of the Quarter's jewellery manufacturing networks.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pollard JS

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Urban Studies

Year: 2004

Volume: 41

Issue: 1

Pages: 173-193

Print publication date: 01/01/2004

ISSN (print): 0042-0980

ISSN (electronic): 1360-063X


DOI: 10.1080/0042098032000155731


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