Small towns in the metropolitan age: an introduction



In urban studies, the situation of small towns and their characteristic structures, and interdependencies are overshadowed by the much-discussed growth of very large cities. When analysing the development of metropolitan regions, we advocate taking effective account of smaller urban centres, and not just the largest ones. As an introduction to this special issue, this paper wishes to place small towns in recent debates about planning and governance of metropolitan regions. We explore three themes: functional relations and socio-spatial dynamics, spatial imaginaries and narratives, and the role of small towns in the governance of metropolitan regions. We then present a brief overview of the articles included in this special issue on small towns in the metropolitan age.


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Christophe Demazière

Sebastian Dembski - University of Liverpool

Divya Leducq

How to Cite
Demazière, C., Dembski, S., & Leducq, D. (2024). Small towns in the metropolitan age: an introduction. European Journal of Spatial Development, 21(2).