Knowledge circulation in urban geography/urban studies

24th Jul 2017

Knowledge circulation in urban geography/urban studies, 1990–2010: Testing the discourse of Anglo-American hegemony through publication and citation patterns

A new paper by Lily Kong and Junxi Qian is now available online


This article approaches the question of Anglo-American hegemony in urban studies by examining publication and citation patterns. The past one or two decades have witnessed critical arguments about how knowledge production in social sciences is characterised by centre–periphery relations, and risks universalising US–American and European knowledge and epistemology. While not much systematic analysis has been done to address the extent to which urban knowledge has been shaped by Anglo-American centrism, it is not difficult to tell that the field is dominated by the Anglophone world in terms of authorship, institutional affiliation, the cities under scrutiny, and the urban theories arising. This article undertakes systematic analysis by collecting papers published between 1990 and 2010, in journals indexed by the categories ‘Geography’ and ‘Urban Studies’ in the ISI Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI) database. We develop a series of analyses by examining the sites of knowledge production, contributors, key research interests, and the circulation/impact of works. We also single out research on urban China to explore questions such as the place of research on non-Anglo-American contexts in international forums. In all, this article argues that the dominant position of the Anglophone world in the production and circulation of urban knowledge is clearly discernible. But the Anglophone dominance does not necessarily mean that other research interests and orientations have not found a footing. Instead, we suggest that the growing but still small niche of urban China research presents tremendous opportunities for generating cross-context dialogues. The potential has not been fully delivered, as yet.

You can access and read the full paper here

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