Ordinary cities, extraordinary geographies: people, place and space

John R. Bryson, Ron Kalafsky, Vida Vanchan

Research output: Book/ReportBook


This insightful edited book explores smaller towns and cities, places in which the majority of people live, highlighting that these more ordinary places have extraordinary geographies. It focuses on the development of an alternative approach to urban studies and theory that foregrounds smaller cities and towns rather than much larger cities and conurbations. Comparative case studies from Australia, Cambodia, India, Korea, the UK and US provide a rich collection of theoretically informed investigations into smaller urban centres that are connected in complex ways to regional, national and international flows of people, goods, ideas and materials. The book further examines policy development and implementation in smaller towns and cities. Chapters analyse core societal challenges, including economic restructuring, urban decline and renewal, and ageing populations. This is a timely and important book for students of human geography, urban studies, planning, and economic geography, particularly those focusing on cities and economic development. It will also appeal to policymakers and planners seeking insights on current debates reframing urban theory to embrace more ordinary towns and cities.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCheltenham
PublisherEdward Elgar
Number of pages264
ISBN (Electronic)9781789908022
ISBN (Print)9781789908015
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2021

Publication series

NameCities Series
PublisherEdward Elgar


  • Ordinary Cities
  • Urban Theory
  • Smaller towns and cities
  • geography


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