, Volume 51, Issue 1–2, pp 129–133 | Cite as

The cityscapes of European capital cities

  • Herman van der Wusten


Capital cities are politico-administrative centers. They are command centers, they symbolize authority and also the unit that is governed. Primarily they are capitals of states, but other governance systems may also have capitals. In the European context there are now regional capital cities and at least the concept of a European capital. Particularly on account of their symbolic function but also for the uses made of its appearance in political life, the cityscape of capital cities is an interesting topic for research. There are different types of capital cities in Europe that give rise to different cityscapes. Existing urban networks and types of political regime are important in this respect. Although cityscapes are pretty stable, they are differently perceived over time and uses made of them also change. A research agenda for this intersection of historical, cultural and political geography should concentrate on the evolution of these cityscapes, their perception and the uses made of them in the acting out of politics.

Capital city cityscape urban network political regime 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Herman van der Wusten
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, Department of Geography and PlanningUniversity of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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