Polycentric Urban Trajectories and Urban Cultural Economy

Cultural Industries in Dutch Cities Since 1900
  • Michaël DeinemaEmail author
  • Robert Kloosterman
Part of the Advances in Spatial Science book series (ADVSPATIAL)


This chapter traces the urban employment trends in cultural industries in the Netherlands from 1899 onwards and argues that a historical approach is necessary to understand economic geographical patterns in this post-industrial growth sector. Longitudinal employment data for the country’s four main cities, as well as case-study information on the spatial and institutional development of separate cultural industries in the Netherlands, reveal long-term intercity hierarchies of performance and historically-rooted local specializations. The effects of historical local trajectories on the inter-urban distribution of Dutch cultural production are weighed against more volatile factors such as creative class densities. Implications for the general outlook and development of these post-industrial urban economies are then explored, whereby the connectivity of the cities in international and regional networks is taken into account. The chapter concludes with identifying the evolutionary mechanisms at work in Dutch cultural industries and the value of a historical perspective vis-à-vis other geographical approaches to the urban cultural economy. As the four examined Dutch cities are all part of the Randstad megacity region, the dynamic Dutch urban cultural economy represents an unlikely case for stable inequalities between cities based on local trajectories. Consequently, strong implications may be inferred for cultural industry dynamics in other contexts.


Postindustrial urban economy Cultural industries Path dependency Competitiveness Megacity region The Netherlands 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Amsterdam Institute of Metropolitan and International Development Studies (AMIDSt) and University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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