Creative Cities, Technological Utopianism and Cultural Retrofitting.

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This chapter reviews academic literature and policies on ‘creative cities’ with a particular emphasis on the development of digital and media infrastructures in making such cities. It tries to understand what lies behind the evolution of the creative cities discourse in developing Asia. I argue that creative cities approach, focusing on global media corporations and smart technologies, is aiding westernised neoliberal governance rhetoric whilst sidestepping some of the core concern of progressive social reforms lies at the core of ‘creative cities’ proposal when it first appeared in post-industrial cities in the West. The emergence of this new breed of smart cities and intelligent cities in many East Asia nations (China in particular) are increasingly looking beyond culture as promises for a soft landing of a transitional national economy, but the soft lining of a pervasive cybernetic urban environments.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRe-Imagining Creative Cities in Twenty-First Century Asia
EditorsXin Gu, Michael Kho Lim, Justin O'Connor
Place of PublicationCham Switzerland
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9783030462918
ISBN (Print)9783030462901
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • creative cities
  • creative industries
  • cultural industries
  • media cities
  • cultural policy

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